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  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines a controller as “a person in charge of expenditure esp. a steward or comptroller.”  According to Wikipedia “a comptroller is a management level position responsible for supervising the quality of accounting and financial reporting of an organization.” In Canada we often use the title Controller in a broader sense but I find that many businesses focus [...]

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    In an article on About.com, F. John Reh defines Key Performance Indicators (KPI) as “financial and non-financial metrics used to help an organization define and measure progress toward organizational goals. KPIs can … assess the present state of the business and assist in prescribing a course of action.” Informationbuilders.com describes KPIs as “high-level snapshots of a business or [...]

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    In our recent article on Cash Management, we briefly discussed the importance of payments in the cash flow cycle. The focus of this article elaborates on the importance of managing accounts payable and a number of key issues. In our recent article on Credit Granting Policies To Improve Cash Flow, we briefly discussed the cost of cash discounts in speeding up cash collections. In this article, we [...]

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    As the owner of your business, do you have a person heading up the accounting function who has limited or no experience managing an accounting and finance function?  Very few SMEs will have an accountant with a designation and strategic skills in that role, which for convenience I will refer to as the Controller (other common titles are Accountant, Office Manager, Accounting Manager, etc.) As a [...]

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    This article first appeared in CanadaOne, an online business newspaper and resource centre. As the owner of your business, do you have a person heading up the accounting function who has limited experience managing an accounting and finance function?  Very few SMEs will have an accountant with a designation and strategic skills in that role, which for convenience I will refer to as the Controller[...]

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    In our recent article on Cash Management, we briefly discussed the importance of inventory management in the cash flow cycle. The focus of this article elaborates on the importance of Inventory Management and a number of key issues. As with many cash flow objectives, there is an art in finding a delicate balance. Inventory management is definitely both an art and a skill that requires the [...]

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    In a recent article on Cash Management, by the authors, we mentioned that the best time to address how payment is to be remitted by the customer is when the credit limits and terms are agreed. Exceptions can always be arranged but it is helpful to agree on the payment terms up front. This article elaborates on the importance of this and some of the issues that should be addressed in managing the [...]

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    Strategically oriented Controllers/CFOs often ask me how to upgrade the quality of the Finance function, and even more important, it’s perceived value as an integral part of the business. Most of these financial leaders often realize that to enhance their role and value (both for the business and for themselves) they need to go “beyond the numbers.” The chief financial officer of a [...]

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    In a recent article on Cash Management by the authors, we mentioned the importance of credit granting policies in the cash management cycle. This article elaborates on the importance of this and some of the issues that should be addressed in managing the sales processes, to facilitate the cash management that will follow. Management of Accounts Receivable is significantly influenced by a [...]

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    Most businesses are constantly trying to reduce expenses but fail to go about it in a methodical way.  As a result, as with most exercises that are not well planned, insufficient focus leads to missed opportunities. One very valuable aid to reducing expenses is to utilize and frequently review checklists, on a regular basis and by more than one staff member. Five checklists covering different [...]

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