The impact of Covid-19 has shown us that even profitable businesses can go broke if they run out of cash.
Understanding and managing your working capital cycle frees up your cash and helps you build a cash war chest to get you through tougher times.
Your working capital cycle is the number of days your cash is tied up to take your goods and services through the sales process, simply put, how long your stock will turn into cash.
The formula for calculating your working capital cycle is: Stock (or work in progress) days + debtor days – credit days
Where stock days = stock / annual sales x 365
Debtor days = current debtor balance / annual sales x 365
And credit days = the number of days until you need to pay your suppliers
For example, if your stock days are 45, debtor days are 60 and credit days are 30, your working capital cycle is 75 days.
Assuming daily sales are £5,000, the business will need either cash on hand or access to a line of credit of £375,000 to stay afloat (£5,000 x 75 days).
To shorten your working capital cycle, consider the following strategies:
- Reduce your stock holdings.
- Invoice more often.
- Change your payment terms.
- Use a debt collector or credit controller.
- Negotiate more favourable terms with suppliers.
This is but a few ways to help shorten your working capital days, if you need more help planning for the future, we can help. We offer guidance to clients to ensure they stay afloat, just get in contact to find out more.