In December, we often find ourselves thinking about making changes to improve our well-being for the new year. However, the festive period is also the perfect time to review the health of your business and reflect on what direction you’d like it to take in the coming months. Here, we’ve put together 6 tips to help you do just that!

1. Check in with parents

The end of the year presents an ideal opportunity for you to get feedback from parents as to how they thought you performed, whether they’d recommend you and what you could be doing differently to improve the service you provide. There are lots of free online questionnaire providers like Survey Monkey to help you collect and review the information you get back.

2.Reflect on your business growth

Try to understand how your business has fundamentally changed over the past year. Ask yourself: is your occupancy trending up? Did any expenses over the past year cause you concern? Has your business grown? If what you uncover worries you, get professional advice from an accountant to set you on the right track for next year.

3.List your main goals for the coming year

Taking time over Christmas to relax will give you some space to focus on the bigger picture at your setting. Use the holiday period to make a list of your main business goals for the coming year. This could be: to increase occupancy, expand your setting or improve your partnership with parents. Having your goals written down in this way will help you keep them at the forefront of your mind.

4.Diarise important dates

Set up your calendar with the appropriate alerts and reminders for the coming financial year so that you’re always prepared. If you’re not sure what dates to flag, speak with your accountant to find out when exactly you need to file certain documents. Remember, tax legislation changes frequently so what’s required of you next year may differ to what you’ve had to do previously.

5.Keep a close eye on your financial pulse

Good quality nursery management software will allow you to run all sorts of financial reports from revenue right through to aged debt. Making sure you’re always able to quickly find the financial pulse of your business (without having to crunch numbers) will enable you to carry out strategic planning more easily.

6.Review the nursery software you use

As your business winds down before the holiday period, why not take the time to review whether the software you use is really working for your setting.  If the software you use is no longer meeting your needs, consider doing some research and booking a free demonstration of a system which will grow and adapt with your business over the coming years.

The holiday period provides plenty of time for you to reflect on how your business has performed over the past year and whether it has met your expectations. Jot down in writing what you’d like to achieve by the same point next year and keep reviewing your list every month to ensure that your business is on target for what you’d like to achieve in 2017.

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