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Top 10 things for practice owners to tackle in 2024 and beyond

Top 10 things for practice owners to tackle in 2024 and beyond

Synopsis
3 Minute Read

Prepare yourself and your practice for the future by digging deep into the top things practice owners can tackle to start the new year, and years to come, off on the right foot. From emergency planning to lease agreements and federal funding opportunities, consider how thoughtful consideration and planning can set your practice up for a successful future.

National Leader, Family Office Services
Regional Leader, Professionals

Your practice is unique and so are your needs and the challenges you face. As we head into this new year, it’s a great time to take a deeper look at your practice and assess areas where updates or more involved planning can be done to protect yourself, your practice, and your future.

Regardless of your situation and your level of preparedness on the items below, sitting down with an advisor to discuss room for growth in the coming months and years is a great way to approach 2024 and avoid pushing important tasks further down the road.

In no particular order, here are the top 10 things MNP advisors recommend all professionals look at and develop a comprehensive plan for in 2024 and beyond:

  1. Emergency planning

Individual emergency planning, such as wills, life insurance, disability, and critical illness coverage, etc., are often commonplace, but when you own a practice, planning for emergency scenarios that might disrupt operations are less common but just as important. Having a game plan gives you the peace of mind that whatever life throws at you, your practice and the people who help you run it will be taken care of and ideally, can continue to operate.

  1. Wealth needs

Have you considered how your family’s wealth translates to your estate, your goals, and tax implications throughout your lifetime and your practice’s lifecycle? Building a financial roadmap can protect your wealth and estate whether that means continuing to pay for staff or keeping up with family household expenses. It’s never too early to plan for transitioning your wealth and estate to the next generation and ensuring it’s protected from leakages wherever possible.

  1. Will and estate planning

Individuals and practice owners will often update their wills following positive life changing events such as the birth of a child or a significant purchase, but many forget that a will is meant to be adjusted often. In a five- or 10-year period, your wealth and family situation can change drastically, so it’s important to ensure your will reflects that. Consider your goals when updating your will. It’s not a process that should be done in isolation. Both from a legal and a tax perspective, you want to ensure you can maintain your wealth going forward. Where you’re at AND where you hope to go – including passing your practice on to the next generation – should be included.

  1. Debt considerations

With interest rates steady at record-high rates, debt is a huge topic of conversation and thoughtful consideration for individuals and practice owners across Canada. Revising your debt repayment plans, understanding the terms and agreements behind your debt, determining what your covenants are, and knowing if you have personal guarantees on corporate debt are vitally important to knowing where you and your practice stand financially.

  1. Tax efficiencies

Having an appropriate structure – both from a corporate standpoint and in your personal wealth management – is key to ensuring you’re getting the most out of your tax situation. Preparing your practice for a sale, through estate planning and isolating non-operational assets, can help ensure you’re positioned to qualify for the lifetime capital gains exemption. Wherever you’re at in your personal and practice’s lifecycle, planning ahead, especially from a tax perspective, will enable you to set realistic goals with a full understanding of tax implications.

  1. Efficiency and long-term needs

Saving money and boosting efficiencies has never been more appealing. Take the opportunity to review your operational costs and find areas to increase efficiency. Even if you’re not actively running a practice, there are costs incurred that can be streamlined with a unique approach that meets your needs. Perform a health check on your practice to locate areas where cost and time savings can be applied and identify your priorities based on your future goals.

  1. Technology and cyber security

Practitioners get so busy running their practice that things like technology updates and cyber security drop off on the priority list. Not only does the latest technology boost your practice’s efficiency but it is also the first and best defence against cyber-attacks and security breaches. In the rapidly changing technological environment, utilizing federal grant programs like the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) can give practices a leg up and provide them with the resources they’re lacking to make much needed upgrades. Not only does updated tech increase your operational efficiency but it increases the value of the practice for a potential buyer and will help you get more out of selling your practice down the road.

  1. Equipment considerations

When assessing equipment needs, it’s important to look at your priority list and decide what’s going to make the biggest difference based on your future goals. From big pieces of equipment like x-ray machines to something as simple as updating your computers, new equipment not only boosts your efficiency, but it can increase your clientele. Programs like CDAP can help in this area as well, with targeted funds enabling you to make those upgrades that might otherwise be out of reach.

  1. Lease and vendor agreements

Knowing the ins and outs of your lease and vendor agreements is critically important for all professionals to ensure you’re protecting yourself, your practice, and your employees. In addition to setting up the agreements appropriately and favourably, thorough, and thoughtful lease and vendor agreements make your practice more attractive for purchase down the road.

  1. Employee recruitment and retention

In any service-based industry, qualified staff are key to ensuring your doors stay open. Proper contracts help you maintain those key talented employees and protect everyone involved in the process. The staff you hold will help you grow the practice and providing an appealing place to work means you’ll attract the kinds of employees needed to accomplish your long term goals.

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Contact us

To learn more about the services MNP offers to professionals, visit our page and contact Laura Camara, Regional Leader, Professionals at [email protected] or Kerry Smith, National Leader, Family Office Services, at [email protected]

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