Keeping yourself and your team goal driven is a great way to maintain motivation, especially when you keep reaching those goals, reaping the rewards of the hard work, and moving forward onto the next objective with a positive mindset. Through SMART objectives – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time bound – and using the right tools to pursue them, you can do this, setting your business up for success with increased profits and an ever expanding customer base.
Regardless of the aim, SMART objectives alone are a powerful driving force for any business to apply to their operations, and today we are going to specifically discuss improving financial performance with the use of Pulse. By combining these two powerful tools, you can set yourself on course to achieve economies of scale, and start reaping the rewards of a greatly improved cash flow by capitalising on the financial insights produced by Pulse, and pursuing those actionable goals.
Going forward, we will establish what Pulse is and why it is such a powerful financial tool for your business, then go on to look at how we can apply it in tandem with SMART objectives to truly accelerate your brand’s successes by gaining a sharp edge over your competitors.
What is Pulse?
Pulse is a revolutionary fintech tool that simplifies and optimises financial planning across the board, standing out as an innovative solution for anyone between individual professionals and large business operations. Pulse uses the latest advances in financial technology to integrate with Open Banking and Open Accounting applications, safely and securely consolidating data from your banks and accounts to provide a comprehensive view of your finances.
Pulse has the ability to automate financial tasks, including transaction categorisation and cash flow forecasting, simplifying financial planning and ensuring that your budgeting is based on up to date, accurate data. More importantly than this, Pulse makes all that data work for you, especially when you are applying the metrics to SMART objectives. Through Pulse’s bespoke dashboard, you will receive actionable insights that are meaningful to you and your business, helping you to spot important trends and financial opportunities whilst simultaneously identifying impending challenges.
Let’s look forward now to all the benefits Pulse can bring to your business while applying them to the SMART objectives, to truly reap the rewards of pursuing and achieving your goals.
If your aim is to focus in on and complete an objective as effectively as possible, it is important to be specific about exactly what you are aiming to achieve. To simply have the ambiguous goal of increasing profits may sound great, but such broad goals often mean there is little to no niche plan to completion.
Instead of the generic objective of increasing profits across the board, businesses can hone in on specifics, such as aiming to increase profits by 10% in the next quarter. Coupled with Pulse, which is designed to help establish and achieve these kinds of objectives, you can begin to focus on such specific goals.
One of Pulse’s stand out features is its ability to present insights into turnover trends by analysing and presenting your open financial data, helping businesses identify patterns, understand growth rates, and ultimately set specific targets for future turnover and scaling. If a company notices a consistent 5% quarterly growth for instance, they can set a specific objective to increase their margin to 8% in the coming quarters.
Due to its ability to generate such actionable insights, Pulse proves not just to provide data, but also offer solutions that businesses can use to plan out clear and actionable financial objectives.
There is an old saying that goes ‘what can’t be measured can’t be managed’, and that is very true in business, especially where finances are involved. Setting objectives without a metric to measure progress and performance can often result in said goals never being seen through to completion. It is important that objectives are quantifiable, adjustable, and offer milestones that can be celebrated once achieved in order to maintain effort.
When pursuing financial goals, it is important to be able to grasp complex financial data in easily digestible formats, and this is where Pulse shines due to its user friendly visualisation. Let’s look at some of the key metrics Pulse let’s businesses keep track of:
P&L (Profit and Loss) Statement
Measuring profit is unavoidable, however all the numbers that go into it will typically require a number of professionals to keep tally, monitor, and produce statements for business owners to then go away with. With Pulse, entrepreneurs have access to a tool that tracks their revenues, costs, and expenses, producing frequent and consistent data to measure profitability objectives. Should your SMART objective be to increase net profit by 10% within the next year, Pulse can provide the metrics to keep track of this.
Customer and Supplier Performance
Through the measurable metrics Pulse produces, businesses can also keep track of customer retention through the buying patterns and profits made available through open banking and open accounting access. This data also sheds light on supplier costs, meaning expanding enterprises can monitor incoming and outgoing funds to keep a detailed measure of their finances.
Pulse also grants businesses insights into their cash flow through statements and balance ratios, granting the opportunity to set up reliable and realistic objectives concerning healthy cash flow reserves. Integrating Pulse with your open source bookkeeping will ensure that every objective remains measured with up to date actionable insights that are guaranteed to help maintain financial stability.
The next important metric of ‘SMART objectives’ is that they are achievable and realistic. While ambition to achieve goals should be the fuel that pushes individuals and teams towards completing them, it is vital that the objectives you set are actually grounded in reality. Having visions of grandeur is important, but not at the cost of impossibility. Unattainable goals will ultimately lead to lost motivation, degradation of teamwork, and a negative impact on finances.
Inline with the other metrics of our SMART objectives, setting achievable goals relies on a clear and accurate detailing of a business’s current monetary health, and Pulse shines in producing these all important measures. By gaining real-time insights into the following, entrepreneurs across all industries can create realistic and achievable financial objectives.
Cash Flow Problems:
Without a positive cash flow, nor any planned SMART objectives to ensure one, a business will quickly fall into negative equity and fold. With the actionable insights Pulse produces via its easy to understand dashboard, business owners can accurately monitor their cash flow and frequently create obtainable, achievable objectives that gradually increase turnover. Be it through reducing payment cycles, or negotiating new terms with suppliers, Pulse can help identify and offer solutions to financial problems.
Debtors and Creditors Ratio:
Debtors and Creditors ratio gives businesses an image of the funds owed to them versus what they owe. Naturally, a higher debtor ratio will indicate customers are taking too long to pay and will affect liquidity, whereas a higher creditor ratio might suggest solvency problems. Pulse can help identify these issues through the third-party data it is granted access to, meaning businesses can set achievable goals to improve their debtor-creditor balance, helping to maintain a healthy financial equilibrium.
Relevance is important in all aspects of life, and certainly for creating focused financial objectives to help propel your business ahead of the competition. Setting objectives that hold no bearing to your brand’s pursuits, or lack any long term aspirations, will, similarly to the importance of making objectives measurable, leave your team without motivation, or in some cases, lead to wasted time and valuable resources.
There needs to be a cohesion in strategy, and every SMART objective should be a step towards achieving your brand’s mission, whatever that may be. If a company is aiming to be the most sustainable name in the industry, and it is a part of their ethos, they can build their objectives based around this, ensuring they remain relevant and obtainable, while complimenting their efforts to achieve financial success.
Alignment with Business Strategy:
The detailed financial insights Pulse produces allow companies to monitor their financial trajectory, and ensure relevant resources can be aligned with the broader business strategy. If, for example, a company is aiming to expand their market, but the financial data produced by Pulse shows stagnant growth, it means business owners can take the info and alter their objectives, shifting towards market penetration and increased revenues before returning its focus to expansion once their first relevant issue has been resolved.
Pulse’s insights into areas like customer and supplier performance can help businesses set objectives that align with their strategic priorities. If a company’s vision is to provide top tier customer service, then objectives for optimising supplier relationships in efforts to ensure timely product delivery become highly relevant.
Due to its cash flow forecasting abilities, Pulse gives business owners the ability to anticipate future scenarios that may affect their brand both positively or negatively. Taking advantage of this foresight, objectives can be created that are not just based on current numbers, but designed around the projections Pulse generates. Such an advantage grants clarity for future successes, and helps ensure objectives remain relevant to your company’s vision.
The final part of our SMART acronym carries just as much importance as the other metrics. Objectives without a clear timeline can result in them never being achieved, as deadlines can be perpetually delayed, and teams can lose all sense of urgency to see them through to the finish. This is why making objectives time bound should always be a non-negotiable aspect of effective goal setting.
Pulse’s monthly snapshots offer businesses a regular and consistent overview of their financial health. These snapshots serve as monthly checkpoints, allowing an enterprise to assess its progress towards objectives. For instance, if a business has set a quarterly objective to increase its gross margin by 10%, the monthly snapshots from Pulse will provide clear data on whether this objective is on track to be achieved. Once the benchmark for performance evaluation has been set with Pulse’s help, businesses can continue to assess if they are on track or if adjustments are needed.
The integration of Pulse, with its innovative capabilities, offers businesses a dynamic approach to set, monitor, and achieve their financial objectives. It amplifies the potency of SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound – objectives, acting as a great frame to build any goal upon.
With its emphasis on user-friendliness, actionable insights, and forward thinking features, Pulse empowers businesses to not only aim high but to precisely target and efficiently reach their financial goals. As we’ve delved into the many ways Pulse enhances the SMART approach, one thing becomes clear: In the pursuit of financial success and stability, employing Pulse as a cornerstone tool is a great decision. So, as you move into the financial future of your business, let Pulse and SMART objectives be the tools you choose, ensuring your efforts are both strategic and successful.
Registering for Pulse is both free and effortless! Once access to your accounting package has been granted, you can anticipate receiving inclusive data analytics and financial metrics on a monthly basis – all geared towards enhancing your business’s success and gaining an advantage over competitors. Take action now and join the Pulse revolution today!
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