"We created a Spotlight Forecast – then I met with the client and NAB. Ten days later, the client had a credit approved discussion paper for a facility of more than $11M to fund the project."
Hi Ryan, great to be speaking with you. To get us started, why don’t you tell me a bit about TNM Consulting and what you do.
Thanks. I’m a partner at TNM Consulting in Melbourne and I head up our advisory division. I built my career on tax and compliance, but transitioned into business advisory over the last five or six years. I’m passionate about helping small businesses and their owners achieve their goals.
TNM Consulting is a full service accounting and advisory firm. We're the centre of our clients financial and business advisory needs. We're proactive in identifying opportunities for our clients, communicating opportunities, and assisting to execute strategies to achieve positive outcomes.
"Our current business advisory efforts are focused on balancing the owner’s lifestyle commitments, which impacts the business owners beyond tax and compliance".
I hear you've just finished a trial with us – how did that go and what wins did you have?
The trial enabled us to start looking forward, rather than backwards by using Spotlight Forecasting. It also enabled us to present the financial and non-financial results visually which is something we haven't previously provided for our clients.
This lead to deeper conversations and enabled us to re-engage with some compliance only clients to introduce other advisory services.
Which of our features are saving you time, making you more money, or improving your productivity?
Regular updating at the click of a button to import actuals to Spotlight enables us to compare to forecasts on a three-way basis, including cash flow, which is vital to every small business.
Our consolidations have previously been done in Excel, so Spotlight has enabled significant efficiencies and improved data integrity in this space, particularly where there's a foreign currency component.
Scenario testing has also been vital to assessing different business strategies and comparing the financial outcomes of these scenarios.
What positive aspects of the Spotlight + Xero integration have you’ve benefited from so far?
One of our clients in the transportation industry has a depot in the South-East of Melbourne. The conversation was general in nature, as I was trying to better understand the logistical movements and the cost structure of the business. From this discussion, we were able to assess the key cost drivers in the business, improve the reporting in Xero, and create Spotlight forecasts for this business.
I continued my discussions with the client about the significant strategic and operational benefits of a new facility in the North of Melbourne, at a cost of $15M. Based on the forecast presented and our discussions, the client asked us to consider the funding model. I met with the client and NAB to show off the forecast. Ten days later, the client had a credit approved discussion paper for a facility of more than $11M to fund the project.
This positive client outcome (while we were using Spotlight Forecasting during a trial) is now the basis for an ongoing advisory engagement for which our current focus is on internal people, systems and processes to remove key person dependence on the business owners.
It's a rewarding body of work which demonstrated the improved profitability and capital value of the business, as well as the owner's comfort in the project. Our current business advisory efforts are focused on balancing the owner’s lifestyle commitments, which impacts the business owners beyond tax and compliance.
These outcomes were as a direct result of the integration between Xero and Spotlight and adding value!
If it’s applicable, how do you rate the customer support you’ve received from from us so far, out of 5?
We haven't needed to use Support yet, but after our discussions with Steve Kafritsas (Senior Account Manager) we've definitely increased our usage.
What would you say to someone who's looking for or shopping around for a reporting tool?
Spotlight ticks the boxes for dashboards, forecasting and management reports. With the added benefit of scenario testing, non-financial reporting, consolidations and future consolidated reporting, it is the ONE TOOL for any accountant, or advisor to integrate into their advisory offerings.