Starting a business

All the support you need to get your business off the ground

Starting a business is a hugely rewarding experience. You can be your own boss, pursue your passion and grow it into something you can truly be proud of.

If you’re reading this page, we’ll assume you’re already committed to the idea and are looking for guidance on how to get a business off the ground. Firstly, congratulations! Secondly, you’re in the right place.

Starting a business is the beginning of an exciting and challenging time in your life. Suddenly you’ll find yourself immersed in a whole new world of insurance, accounting, marketing and taxation. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed.

Marsh & Partners is here to make your life easier. We’ll do everything we can to support your business and goals because we’re as keen as you are about having a vision and making it happen.  

For everything you need to know in one comprehensive guide, we recommend you download our Starting a Business Guide. In this free guide, we’ve put all the information in the one place to save you from endless googling. We’ll take you through each step of starting a business and help you understand what the road ahead looks like.

Where to begin on your business journey?

Before you conquer the business world, there’s quite a few jobs to tick off to ensure your new business is set up for success.

To begin with, you’ll need to choose the right business structure to operate your business from. This is where a specialist business accountant is invaluable because the right business structure for you will depend on your individual circumstances.

You’ll also need to get all your ducks in a row with bookkeeping, record keeping, taxes and regulatory bodies such as ASIC and the ATO.

We help with all these practical steps that turn your concept into a real, functioning business. We’re also here to guide you along the way – whether you need someone to bounce ideas off, someone to solve a problem or business improvement strategies. If this is your first business venture, there’s a lot to learn and great guidance right from the start is invaluable.

Read some of our client stories below to see how we’ve been able to help.

We first met Tim when he’d been referred to us to help get his business off the ground. He’d had so much conflicting advice from friends, family and the internet that he was overwhelmed and confused about the best way to set it all up. It’s a common dilemma and can lead to inertia.

We were able to guide him through the process of setting up a business in Australia, which included choosing the right legal structure, developing a business plan, cash flow forecasts and budgets, and generally being a sounding board for his ideas.

Through this process, Tim acquired much-needed knowledge and confidence about building a business. Once he was up and running, our quarterly meetings helped keep him on task and on track.

How much money do you need to start a business?  We get asked this a lot and the answer is…it depends on the type of business. A general rule of thumb though is about two to three months of expenses including all your start-up costs.

We advise anyone starting a business to do a comprehensive budget and cash flow forecast.  This will help you monitor income and expenses when cash is tight in the early days.

Peter had always worked for someone else so it was a huge learning curve when he decided to go out on his own. We were able to help him with the business’s finances by creating an accounting toolkit which included: a breakeven analysis, a budget, pricing strategy, cash flow forecasts and identifying his key numbers to monitor and manage.

When Angela started out in business, her biggest concern was that the accounts were not right.  We were able to set up her accounting software and bookkeeping processes to clean it all up and put in place some safeguards for moving forward. She employed an internal bookkeeper to take over that function and we are now overseeing that function to give her the confidence that the numbers are right. Angela reviews her numbers regularly and is on track to make a profit.

We understand you may not want to be an accountant, but you do need to understand and take control of the numbers side of your business. Keeping a close eye on your cash flow, budget and profit and loss is the minimum. If you don’t know what it all means, get your bookkeeper or accountant to sit with you each month and explain your financial position.

The purpose of planning is to work out how to spend your money, time and other resources effectively. Without a plan, you can find yourself spinning your wheels or jumping from one priority to the next.

We started working with Fiona when she needed some help to build momentum in her start up. She wasn’t sure if the business was financially sound or heading in the right direction. Our first action was to create an easy business plan. After documenting her goals and objectives, we identified focus areas and prioritised action plans to help her reach those goals.

With a realistic business plan to guide her, Fiona is now able to:

  • step back from the day-to-day issues and assess what’s working and what can be improved,
  • prioritise her activities
  • monitor and assess progress, and
  • anticipate problems before they arrive.

Note: Names in client stories have been changed to protect their privacy.

Your Guide to Starting a Business

Find out everything you need to know to get your business off to a flying start in this free downloadable guide.

How we set you up for success

Set up your ownership structure

Sole trader, partnership, company or trust? Each has pros and cons when it comes to tax, liability, succession, ownership and disposal of the business. We help you choose and establish the best structure for your individual needs.

Attend to all registrations

We take care of all your legally required registrations such as registering a business name and applying for an Australian Business Number and Tax File Number. You may also need to register for GST and PAYG withholding, workers compensation and more and we’ll let you know if these apply to you.

Set up your accounting system

We know the ins and outs of Xero, MYOB, QuickBooks and more. We can help you choose a package, set it up properly and get the most out of its features. Our bookkeepers also provide systems training and ongoing support. From a one-off session to an on-call basis, we’re available to answer your questions and make sure your systems are accurate.

Help with budgeting and forecasting

We can prepare simple to complex business budgets and cash flow forecasts that help you plan and manage your business. You may need these if you’re applying for finance, or you may just need them to stay on top of your finances. When you’re in control of the money side of things, you’ll have the confidence to develop and grow your business.

BAS and GST lodgement

We can take the headache out of lodging your monthly or quarterly BAS obligations. Our bookkeepers will make sure they’re on time and accurate, so you’ll never have to worry about getting behind.

Cash flow management advice

There are few things more stressful than a cash flow crisis. We can conduct a thorough analysis of your cash management processes then treat the contributing factors. As your accountability partners, we’ll make sure you stay on track in future.

Tax planning

Our accountants run tax planning sessions with clients each year to maximise the flexibility their business structures afford and minimise their tax position. You’ll have plenty of time to organise your cash flow around any tax liabilities and be certain you’re not paying any more tax than you need to.

Business coaching

Regardless of where you’re at in your business’ lifecycle, working with an experienced business coach will provide the support and sounding board you need to keep growing and working towards your goals.

Ready to get going?

Starting a business can be both exciting and daunting. Get in touch below and we'll do our best to make the process that little bit easier.

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New to business? Here's some resources you may find useful.
The 8 key numbers every business should monitor
The 8 key numbers every business should monitor

If you don’t monitor your key financial metrics, you may be missing out on valuable insights about your business’s financial health. In this article we’ll take you through the key numbers every business should monitor and manage each month. They will help you make better business decisions and proactively plan for the future.

Starting a Business Guide
Starting a Business Guide
Strategic Planning Guide
Know Your Numbers Guide
Business Growth Guide
We've helped hundreds of clients to fix, grow and future-proof their businesses.

"Marsh & Partners have redefined what we expect from an accounting firm. We're an SME business with a few companies and trusts. Although we liked our previous accountants, they simply did not have a refined process to help us grow our business and optimise our lifestyle. On top of the regular tax and compliance work, we have quarterly meetings. It's as though they are ex-officio directors. That's made a huge difference to us."

Jamie HayesHealthy Inspirations Franchising

"We have been a client of Marsh & Partners for almost 10 years now. The team has evolved with our needs and provide the most current advice available. Marsh & Partners make it their mission to be ahead of an ever changing industry. We would highly recommend Marsh & Partners to any business."

Lisa SaundersThe Fitout Studio

"Our family has enjoyed a successful partnership with Marsh & Partners for over 31 years. During this time, we have been provided with exceptional taxation and business strategies to help our agricultural and commercial interests and now leading into our second intergenerational transfer. It is also mutually beneficial that the partners and associates travel to our home and place of business to actually see and understand our operation and needs."

Scott SeisMungana Farming

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