A guest blog by Sam Jones of NGI Finance 

All small businesses will set themselves the same goal, provide an excellent service or product and look to generate profit as soon as possible. There is no set pattern for business growth. Some businesses might take 5 years to achieve their potential whilst others could be hitting impressive profit margins within just 5 months of trading. Both scenarios can come with their own pitfalls but there are certainly added pressures when a business starts to grow rapidly.

Cashflow

Often the balancing of cashflow can be a real challenge. Pushing for higher sales can require more stock, more supplies and even new staff to fulfil client demands. All of which result in a drain on cashflow as money is normally required upfront before anything can be recouped from client sales. Businesses need to secure a cashflow safety net to ensure that their growth is manageable.

Inefficiencies

Any growing business knows that in order to achieve success they have to offer their clients what they want, as soon as they want it. For example, if you are a manufacturer whose product is in high demand you must hit shipment deadlines. The issue is that if demand increases too quickly operational inefficiencies could start to show and as a result quality standards may drop. These types of inefficiencies can have a negative impact on the customer and cause complaints or bad product reviews.

Staff

Often the first thing that is overlooked when business growth is excessive is the employees. A business is only as good as the people behind it and when extra demands are put on them issues start to arise. They can start to feel pressurised; they are often asked to work additional hours and quickly can become stressed. The last thing a fledgling business wants is a large turnover of staff, consistency is key and keeping good reliable staff is vital.

Space

Business growth will often mean the need for additional space. This could be to accommodate more staff, office equipment, manufacturing equipment, new machinery or increased stock levels. A business might not always find the right premises straight away so when they do grow, they might need to invest in new space, looking at a second facility or even consider purchasing their own building.

The one common solution to helping to ensure a growing business does not suffer from any of these pitfalls is finance. It might seem strange, but business finance is one of the most valuable resources available. For example, if a business needs to increase its headcount then they can rely on some invoice finance to bridge the gap of paying new employees and waiting for clients to pay their invoices. Or short-term business loans can be sourced to enable the purchasing of new stock. It could also be that a commercial mortgage is required so that new business premises can be purchase.

In summary yes, there will always be some pitfalls of growing too fast but if you have the right infrastructure in place and the access to appropriate business finance then these pitfalls can be very quickly overcome.

NGI Finance is a family-run Independent Finance Broker that works with all sizes of UK business customers to provide access to a wide range of flexible financial products.

NGI Finance is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is a member of the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers (NACFB).

Sam Jones joined NGI Finance as Business Development Manager in February 2018 and supports business owners achieve sustainable growth by raising funds.

If you need advice and business financial support, get in touch with Sam at NGI Finance on 01993 706403 or email sam@ngifinance.co.uk

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