Newpoint Advisors is a turnaround consulting firm dedicated to improving troubled and financially underperforming businesses with revenues of $1 to $50 million. “We find ourselves working more and more with companies on the smaller end of that scale,” says Ken Yager, president of Newpoint. It’s easy to understand why: Those firms need the tools and guidance to get their arms around their growing small businesses that aren’t so small anymore.
When you’re trying to turn a company around, Yager says, you can’t just make a general observation and go with your gut. You have to have some science behind it. To that end, Newpoint Advisors has created a couple of tools.
Structured process identifies the problem(s). One is called TAME, Turnaround Action Matrix Evaluation. This provides a structured framework to help businesses identify, evaluate and address immediate issues that threaten the success of their business. TAME also provides clear benchmarking, identifies fundamental infrastructure problems, identifies critical operational elements, and positions the company for tactical execution. “In most cases, TAME finds that the solution is not about investing in something, such as people, software, etc.,” Yager relates. “The solution is often about changing habits. TAME helps identify what those habits are.”
The problem is usually cash flow. In many instances, a major threat is poor cash flow—especially for those in seasonal businesses. That’s why Newpoint has created a second tool called Cash Flow Launcher. “It’s a simple to use, easy to understand cash flow model that looks 13 weeks out,” Yager says. That’s important, because 13 weeks (or one quarter) is the ideal length of time for business managers to see potential changes in cash flow and working capital. This allows for proactive action to help manage through those various cash flow spikes that happen over a period of time.
Cash Flow Launcher includes instructions, video and webinar support, and excel-based workbooks. “It is so easy to understand and use that we give it away free on our website,” Yager says. “There are also three levels of affordable paid services for those who need a Cash Flow Coach to help them get started or figure out certain cash flow challenges. With each pay level increase comes an increase in support. That said, the tool itself is the same regardless of whether they use the free version or one of the three paid levels.”
Accessible 24/7 from Newpoint’s, Cash Flow Launcher provides 13-week dashboard reporting, sales and collections information, purchases and disbursements data, and a liquidity analysis. For those individuals who are not numbers-oriented, clean charts and graphs are designed to help make the data easier to understand. “Cash Flow Launcher also simplifies the accounting document gathering process,” Yager adds. “We only require 13 common accounting documents, which most companies keep up with.” Once that financial data is entered into the system, Cash Flow Launcher basically does the rest.
Yager says Cash Flow Launcher will help companies:
- Forecast revenue and tie revenue to collections
- Forecast staffing and expenses, and tie expenses to disbursements
- Determine the timing difference between receipts and disbursements
- Measure the liquidity gap from timing differences
- Determine how much liquidity is needed to cover these gaps
- Gather metrics, which will provide time to be proactive vs. reactive
“Positive liquidity if what you’re after as a business owner,” Yager says. “You want to keep your net cash flow above zero, which is the difference between inflows and outflows over a given period. Cash Flow Launcher is designed to make this easier to do.”