How to Account For VAT in the Netherlands?

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | How to Account For VAT in the Netherlands?

Expanding your own business involves looking for new markets. In order to obtain a satisfactory level of income, it is advisable to sell goods and services within the various countries of the European Union. One popular country is the Netherlands, which is preferred by many people for doing business and is even described as a tax haven. Regardless of colloquial opinions, it is worth finding out what the tax system in the Netherlands is really like.

BSN and VAT Identification Numbers

Doing business in the Netherlands for an extended period of time is linked to the need to obtain a BSN identification number, which is given to every person who wishes to live and work in the country. The BSN is a number used to process personal data and is required to use a wide variety of services in the Netherlands, including when registering a company. Another issue is obtaining a VAT number in Netherlands, which is necessary for the payment of turnover tax. All taxpayers who operate in the Netherlands are obliged to register, and are therefore also required to pay VAT.

New VAT Registration Numbers From 2020

The VAT number in Netherlands is also referred to as a BTW number. It is worth mentioning that new VAT identification numbers for sole traders in the country have been issued in 2020. Currently, a VAT number in the Netherlands consists of the country code NL, nine digits, as well as the letter B and two check digits, for example 123456789B01. To verify that the VAT number provided is correct, you can use a tool provided by the European Union called VIES or VAT Information Exchange System. This can be a basic form of checking and obtaining reliable information on companies. However, it should be noted that this system does not provide information on companies registered in countries other than EU countries and Northern Ireland.

Basic VAT Rates in the Netherlands

There are three main VAT rates in the Netherlands: the standard rate of 21%, the reduced rate of 9% and the 0% rate. The reduced rate can be applied to products such as medicines, food, books and magazines. The zero rate mainly applies to services related to the international transport of people or goods. In the Netherlands, certain products are also exempt from VAT. This is a group of goods and services related to healthcare, education, childcare, banking services, as well as trade in real estate. The list of VAT exemptions is long and covers many categories, so it is advisable to look into the specific regulations and tax rate reductions before starting a business.

Rules for Filing Tax Returns

VAT returns in the Netherlands are filed monthly, quarterly or annually. Quarterly returns are the most common, but this can easily be changed by sending a letter to the Tax and Customs Administration. This is the government organization responsible for levying, collecting taxes and also implementing various reliefs and schemes for Dutch residents. Some tax regulations may be unclear or you may be unsure how to apply them. For this reason, it is advisable to use the services of a specialized accounting office to take care of your comprehensive VAT settlement in the Netherlands. You can then be sure that everything you do will comply with the dynamically changing laws in this country.

5 Reasons Financial Record Keeping Is Crucial for a Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | 5 Reasons Financial Record Keeping Is Crucial for a Business

Financial recordkeeping is essential for entrepreneurs, corporate entities, and business organizations. It is a pivotal element contributing to a business’s expansion and sustainability.

Financial recordkeeping holds utmost significance regardless of the industry in which a business operates. Given that records and documents form the foundation of any enterprise, it becomes imperative to diligently store, preserve, and manage these records, ensuring their accessibility for future endeavors aimed at fostering business growth.

In this article, we’ll elaborate on why financial recordkeeping is important for a business.

1. Simplifies Tax Recording

Maintaining accurate financial records is vital, particularly during tax season. Failure to uphold proper bookkeeping practices can lead to arduous tasks when filing end-of-year taxes. This often entails spending extensive hours gathering essential financial information, such as income statements and expense reports. Inadequate recordkeeping may result in missed deductions, such as omitting mileage records for business trips or lacking receipts for significant purchases.

Moreover, accurate financial recordkeeping is particularly crucial for businesses operating as LLC partnerships. LLC partnerships often involve multiple partners, and maintaining detailed records helps ensure the proper allocation of income, deductions, and tax liabilities among the partners.

Additionally, LLC partnerships may receive a Form 1099 if they meet specific criteria, such as earning $600 or more in non-employee compensation or being taxed as a sole proprietor. It is also essential for LLC partnerships to issue Form 1099 to contractors or vendors.

Failure to maintain accurate records can result in incorrect reporting on Form 1099, potentially leading to penalties and compliance issues. Therefore, meticulous bookkeeping practices are essential for LLC partnerships to accurately fulfill their tax obligations, including Form 1099 requirements, and avoid potential legal and financial consequences.

For more detailed information about LLC partnerships and Form 1099 requirements, you can look at an LLC Partnerships and Form 1099 guide or seek guidance from a tax professional who can provide valuable support in navigating these obligations and ensuring proper compliance and reporting.

2. Effective Cash Flow Management

In the realm of financial management for a thriving business, the saying “cash is king” holds resolute significance. Particularly highlighted by the challenges posed by events like the COVID-19 pandemic, the ability to maintain a robust cash flow that can weather uncertainties becomes paramount for the long-term survival of any company.

Enter the crucial role of record keeping. By diligently maintaining accurate financial records, you can identify and comprehend the inflows and outflows of your hard-earned dollars. This practice enables you to obtain a precise assessment of your company’s financial well-being and aids in projecting its financial health in the future.

3. Informed Decision-Making Through Comprehensive Financial Analysis

When confronted with critical choices, it becomes imperative to perform financial analysis and comprehend the underlying financial information meticulously. This process empowers managers to discern patterns, identify potential roadblocks, and closely monitor real-time financial performance. By maintaining a vigilant eye on your financial records, you can equip yourself with the necessary insights to make prudent economic decisions when the time arises.

Regularly tracking your company’s financial performance is paramount, whether on a daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual basis. These financial records serve as a comprehensive reflection of your business’s operational outcomes and overall financial standing. In essence, they provide a panoramic view, allowing you to grasp the current financial state of your company.

How is your business faring? Do you possess sufficient funds in your bank account to meet your financial obligations? Without this vital information, your control over the trajectory of your business diminishes significantly. When operating a business, exercising command over various financial aspects, such as inventory levels and projected needs, becomes paramount. This control enables you to navigate the intricate web of financial intricacies and make informed decisions that propel your business forward.

4. Streamlined Loan Acquisition and Enhanced Funding Opportunities

In the pursuit of securing swift financial resources to acquire crucial equipment or bridge budget gaps, the importance of maintaining impeccable financial records becomes abundantly clear. When seeking the support of lenders or investors, it is customary for them to require comprehensive financial reports, including income statements and balance sheets, to assess your company’s creditworthiness.

By diligently organizing and maintaining these essential reports, you empower yourself to swiftly apply for loans or funding, allowing you to seize new business opportunities without hesitation.

Having your financial records readily available instills confidence in lenders and investors, as it showcases your commitment to transparency and meticulous financial management. This proactive approach not only expedites the loan application process but also positions your company favorably when it comes to negotiations and securing funding on favorable terms.

By keeping your finances in order, you are well-prepared to navigate the ever-changing business landscape and capitalize on emerging opportunities that demand immediate financial support.

5. Empower Effective Budgeting Strategies

Effective budgeting lies at the heart of prudent financial management for business owners. It serves as a compass, guiding decision-making processes and ensuring that expenditure and revenue-generating tactics align harmoniously with the predetermined financial expectations. Through comprehensive financial reports, owners gain invaluable insights that enable them to identify areas of over or under-budgeting, make informed staffing decisions, and pay attention to potential misalignments with industry-standard gross profit margins, among other critical considerations.

These reports serve as a compass, enabling owners to gauge the financial health of their business and make necessary adjustments to ensure long-term sustainability. By carefully analyzing financial data, owners can proactively identify areas of inefficiency, potential cost savings, and revenue optimization opportunities.

This proactive approach not only enhances overall financial performance but also cultivates a culture of financial responsibility and accountability within the organization.

Wrapping Up

Accurate financial recordkeeping is vital for businesses of all sizes. It simplifies tax recording, aids in effective cash flow management, enables informed decision-making, streamlines loan acquisition, and empowers effective budgeting strategies. Maintaining meticulous financial records allows businesses to navigate challenges, seize opportunities, and ensure long-term sustainability. Prioritizing accurate recordkeeping establishes a solid foundation for success, fostering compliance, transparency, and financial growth.

Don’t underestimate the power of organized financial records in propelling your business forward. As companies navigate the dynamic economic landscape today, ensuring accurate financial recordkeeping is crucial to ensure growth, resilience, and prosperity.

How to Choose an Australian Invoicing Software for Your Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article |How to Choose an Australian Invoicing Software for Your Business

In the modern business landscape, efficiency is paramount. Streamlining operations can significantly enhance productivity, and one area where this is particularly evident is invoicing. The right invoicing software can revolutionize your business, saving time and reducing errors. But with so many options on the market, how do you choose the right one? 

As businesses strive for greater transparency and efficiency, the demand for advanced invoicing software is growing significantly. In the context of Australian businesses, choosing an invoicing software that also enhances security, aids in fraud management, and provides complete control over the invoice approval process becomes even more critical. The right Australian invoicing software can cater to specific local tax laws and business practices, making your operations smoother and more compliant. 

This article will guide you through the process of selecting the ideal invoicing software for your Australian business.

Understanding Your Business Needs

Before diving into the sea of available software, it’s crucial to understand your business needs. Are you a small business owner looking for basic invoicing functions, or do you run a larger enterprise with complex invoicing requirements? Identifying your needs will help narrow down your options and ensure you choose software that aligns with your business operations.

Features to Look for

When selecting an Australian invoicing software, there are several key features to consider. These include automated invoicing, multi-currency support, other business software integration, and Australian tax laws compliance. Additionally, consider the software’s user interface and customer support. You’ll want software that’s easy to use and backed by a responsive support team. 

Transitioning to the next point, it’s also essential to consider the software’s scalability.

Scalability and Flexibility

As your business grows, your invoicing needs will change. The software you choose should be able to adapt and grow with your business. Look for software that offers flexible plans and features that can be customized to suit your evolving needs.

Security Measures

In today’s digital age, data security is paramount. A survey conducted in 2020 revealed that a staggering 74% of businesses faced either attempted or successful cyberattacks. Among these, wire transfers were targeted in 39% of the incidents, while ACH debits accounted for 34%. 

Your chosen software should have robust security measures to protect your business and customer data. This includes encryption, secure data storage, and compliance with data protection regulations.

Pricing and Value for Money

Finally, consider the pricing structure of the software. While finding a solution within your budget is crucial, don’t compromise on essential features for the sake of cost. Remember, the right software is an investment that can save you time and money in the long run.

Exploring Software Options

Once you’ve identified your needs, it’s time to explore available options. There’s a wide range of Australian invoicing software on the market, each with unique strengths and weaknesses. 

For instance:

  • Xero: a popular choice among small businesses, offering features like automated invoicing, integration with other business software, and compliance with Australian tax laws.
  • MYOB: provides a range of features, including multi-currency support, customizable invoices, and robust security measures.
  • QuickBooks Online: while not Australian-specific, it is used by many Australian businesses due to its comprehensive features.
  • Reckon One and Saasu: are Australian-based software options that offer invoicing features tailored to the needs of Australian businesses.

Don’t rush the process. Take your time to research, read reviews, and even try demo versions if available. This will give you a feel for the software and help you determine if it fits your business well.

Ease of Use

A software’s user interface can significantly impact your productivity. You don’t want to spend hours learning how to use a complicated system. Look for software that’s intuitive and easy to navigate. This will save you time and make the invoicing process more efficient.

Integration Capabilities

Your invoicing software shouldn’t exist in isolation in today’s interconnected business world. It should be able to integrate seamlessly with your other business systems, such as your accounting software, CRM, and inventory management system. This will streamline your operations and ensure consistency across your business

Customization Options

Every business is unique, and your invoicing software should reflect that. Look for software that allows you to customize invoices with your branding, add personalized messages, and adjust the layout to suit your needs. This will give your invoices a professional look and make them more recognizable to your clients.

Automated Features

Automation can be a game-changer in invoicing. It can save you time, reduce errors, and ensure timely invoicing. Look for software that offers features like recurring invoices, automatic reminders for overdue payments, and automatic calculation of taxes and discounts.

Customer Support

Even with the most user-friendly software, you may encounter issues or have questions. That’s where customer support comes in. Choose a software provider that offers reliable, responsive customer support. This could be through live chat, email support, or a comprehensive knowledge base.

Software Reviews and Recommendations

Don’t just take the software provider’s word for it. Look for reviews and recommendations from other businesses. This will give you an unbiased view of the software’s performance and help you make an informed decision.

Trial Periods and Money-Back Guarantees

Many software providers offer trial periods or money-back guarantees. This allows you to test the software before committing fully. Use these offers to ensure the software meets your needs and expectations.

In Conclusion

Choosing the right Australian invoicing software for your business involves carefully evaluating your needs, thoroughly exploring available options, and considering factors such as ease of use, integration capabilities, customization options, automated features, customer support, and value for money. By taking these steps, you can find a solution that not only simplifies your invoicing process but also contributes to your business’s overall efficiency and success.

Discover the Latest Accounting Technology Trends for 2023

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | Discover the Latest Accounting Technology Trends for 2023

The accounting sector, traditionally known for its manual processes and paper trails, is currently standing at the precipice of a significant transformation. This metamorphosis is primarily driven by the formidable digital revolution, a phenomenon that’s leaving no stone unturned across many industries. The ramifications of this revolution have been particularly profound in shaping the trajectory of the accounting domain.

As we embark on the journey into 2023, the landscape is teeming with various innovative accounting technology trends. These are not merely temporary disruptions but defining and reshape conventional accounting practices’ blueprint. They’re shifting paradigms, pushing boundaries, and challenging the status quo, making it imperative for businesses to adapt and align with these changes.

In this evolving scenario, Managed Service Providers (MSPs) – the entities that offer essential IT services – are finding themselves at the heart of this transformation. The responsibility on their shoulders is immense. Yet, they are the bridge that can connect businesses to these emerging trends, enabling them to navigate the waves of change successfully.

Leaning Into the Potential of Artificial Intelligence

Standing at the forefront of 2023 accounting technology trends, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming how businesses operate. By integrating AI into their systems, MSPs are assisting businesses in automating mundane tasks such as data entry and invoice processing. How does this work? AI employs machine learning algorithms to sift through massive data, recognise patterns, and generate predictions, thereby minimising human error, speeding up processing times, and facilitating informed decision-making.

The Expanding Horizon of Cloud Accounting

As an emerging trend, cloud technology is reshaping accounting practices. By offering cloud-based accounting services, MSPs enable businesses to access their financial data anytime, anywhere. The advantages are two-fold – companies get real-time insight into their financial performance, promoting informed decision-making, and they can also minimise the need for in-house IT infrastructure, leading to cost savings and improved data security.

The Influence of Blockchain Technology

While blockchain is usually linked with cryptocurrencies, it’s carving a niche in the accounting domain. The technology offers a secure and transparent transaction recording method through a decentralised ledger, thus minimising fraud and error risks. MSPs incorporating blockchain in their offerings empower businesses to refine their reconciliation processes and enhance audit trails, resulting in more reliable and accurate financial reporting.

The Advent of Robotic Process Automation

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is another transformative trend. By using software robots or “bots” to automate repetitive tasks, MSPs adopting RPA are helping businesses improve their accounting efficiency and accuracy. As a result, RPA is revolutionising the industry, allowing accountants to concentrate on strategic tasks rather than routine administrative work.

Prioritizing Cybersecurity in Accounting

In today’s digital age, where data breaches are alarmingly frequent, cybersecurity has taken centre stage in the accounting sector. MSPs are vital in providing secure IT services and shielding businesses from cyber threats. In addition, implementing stringent security measures, such as multi-factor authentication and end-to-end encryption, can drastically lower the risk of financial data breaches.

Wrapping Up

The accounting sector is undergoing significant technological evolution, creating avenues for businesses to streamline operations, increase accuracy, and make data-driven decisions. By collaborating with MSPs in tune with these trends, companies can stay at the forefront of change and maintain their competitive edge. The accounting sector is poised for a bright future, and it’s time for businesses to leverage the opportunities.

4 Ways Small Businesses Can Benefit From the CARES Act

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | 4 Ways Small Businesses Can Benefit From the CARES Act

As a business owner, you’re probably always searching for ways to keep your business running smoothly. However, with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it’s not as easy as it used to be. Small businesses have been hit particularly hard, with many struggling to stay afloat. Thankfully, the CARES Act offers several benefits that can help small businesses navigate economic challenges.

Signed into the law in March 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES ACT aims to provide economic relief to individuals and businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The act includes several provisions that are aimed specifically at helping small businesses.

Small businesses are vital to the US economy. In fact, they account for 99.9% of all enterprises in the United States and employ more than 47% of the private workforce. However, many small businesses are struggling to stay afloat due to the ongoing pandemic. The CARES Act can help ease some financial burdens small businesses face.

If you’re a small business owner, it’s important to understand the benefits of the CARES Act and how you can take advantage of them. To help you get started, the ERC Today has created a CARES Act Eligibility Guide. This guide can help you determine which benefits you’re eligible for and how to apply for them.

In this article, we’ll look at the benefits of the CARES Act for small businesses and how you can use these programs to keep your business afloat during these challenging times.

Paycheck Protection Program       

As a small business owner, navigating the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has likely been a major challenge. Fortunately, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is one part of the CARES Act that can help ease the burden.

PPP was established to help small businesses keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 crisis. The program provided $349 billion in loans to eligible businesses to cover payroll and other operating expenses to maintain employment levels. Loans can be partially or completely forgiven if firms meet certain criteria.

To be eligible for a PPP loan, your company must have fewer than 500 employees and have been in existence on or before February 15, 2020. Some other eligibility requirements include the following:

  • You must use at least 60% of the loan amount for payroll expenses for full forgiveness.
  • Sole proprietors, self-employed persons, and independent contractors

The Payment Protection Program (PPP) in the CARES Act offers the following benefits:

  • Provides small businesses with forgivable loans to cover payroll and other essential expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Allows businesses to keep employees on payroll and avoid layoffs.
  • Offers a streamlined application process with reduced paperwork requirements.
  • Offers loan deferral for up to ten months, with interest rates capped at 1%
  • Provides additional funding for minority-owned and rural businesses through set-asides and dedicated funding.
  • Supports independent contractors, sole proprietors, and self-employed individuals who are eligible for loans based on their payroll costs or net income.

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)

The EIDL program offers loans of up to $2 million to eligible small businesses and non-profit organizations affected by a disaster, including the COVID-19 pandemic. These loans are intended to cover operating expenses that the company could have covered if the tragedy had not occurred. Here are some benefits of EIDL for small businesses:

  • Low-interest rates of 3.75% for small businesses and 2.75% for non-profits
  • Repayment plans that can last up to 30 years.
  • For loans of up to $25,000, no collateral is required.
  • The money can be utilized for various business needs, such as rent, utilities, and payroll.
  • EIDL advances of up to $10,000 are also available, which do not need to be repaid.

To apply for an EIDL, you must have been in business as of January 31, 2020, and meet certain eligibility criteria. You can apply directly through the Small Business Administration (SBA) website.

It’s important to note that EIDL loans are not forgivable like PPP loans, meaning you’ll have to repay the loan amount and interest. However, the low-interest rates and long repayment periods can make it a manageable solution for businesses struggling during the pandemic.

Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC)

The ERTC is a refundable credit that can be used to offset certain employment taxes. The ERTC aims to motivate firms to retain employees throughout the COVID-19 epidemic.

To claim the ERTC, your business must have experienced either a partial or full suspension of operations due to a government order related to COVID-19 or a significant decline in revenue. Additionally, businesses must have fewer than 500 employees to qualify.

To claim the ERTC, you must report the credit on your quarterly employment tax return. If the credit exceeds the amount of employment taxes due, you can request a refund of the difference.

There are several benefits of the ERTC for small businesses, including:

  • The credit is worth up to 70% of eligible wages paid between March 12, 2020, and December 31, 2021.
  • The maximum credit is $7,000 per employee per quarter, making it a substantial financial relief for small businesses.
  • The credit can be applied retroactively to 2020, meaning businesses that did not claim the credit in the year can still do so on their amended returns.
  • The ERTC is available to businesses that received PPP loans, meaning businesses can take advantage of both programs to help them through the pandemic.

Flexibility with Retirement Plans

The temporary flexibility offered to retirement plans is one of the CARES Act measures that might help small enterprises. This provision is designed to provide small business owners and employees with greater financial flexibility during the pandemic.

One of the key changes to retirement plan rules is the increase in the loan limit. The CARES Act allows eligible participants to borrow up to $100,000 from their retirement accounts, compared to $50,000 from the previous limit. This higher loan limit may provide additional funding to small business owners and employees to help them withstand the economic effects of the pandemic.

In addition, the CARES Act also includes provisions that allow for penalty-free distributions from retirement accounts for individuals affected by the pandemic. Eligible individuals can withdraw up to $100,000 from their retirement accounts without incurring the 10% early withdrawal penalty that typically applies to distributions made before age 59½. These distributions can be spread out over a three-year period and can be repaid within that time to avoid tax liability.


In conclusion, the CARES Act can significantly benefit small businesses facing economic challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s important to explore all options and take advantage of the assistance available. By utilizing the CARES Act benefits, small businesses can overcome financial hurdles and continue to contribute to the