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Interactive Diagnostic


13 The Courtyard
Timothy's Bridge Road
Warwickshire CV37 9NP

01789 294484



7-8 Stratford Place

0207 495 0304


Investment v costs

There are two ways to consider the effects or benefits of business and personal expenditure.

The payment of rates or utility costs are an essential part of our daily expenditure, but it would be difficult to view them as an investment.

Whereas the cost of building a new online sales platform for your business may open up the prospect to win additional sales for your business or additional income for your family finances. But the costs of the build are a real expense.

Any costs that you undertake that will have a direct impact on improving your financial situation should be considered an investment rather than an expense.

Having made this distinction, it makes sense, when you are considering cost cutting or planning your finances, to protect investment costs and see if you can reduce those costs that are not going to have a direct, positive influence in 2024.

In certain cases, the two distinctions may rub shoulders with each other. For example, investing in solar technology, while not impacting your ability to earn more, may help you reduce your ongoing electricity costs.

If we are to recover from the economic challenges of the past few years, we must address a more considered reclassification of our planned outgoings.

Be wary of reducing investment expenditure.

Other aspects of your expenditure that will also need consideration in this exercise could include:

  • Will an investment in a new piece of plant really have a positive impact on your sales or could the expenditure be deferred until trading conditions improve?
  • Do you really need to change your car? It may get you from A to B more comfortably, but it will likely use financial resources that may be more profitably employed in improving productivity and sales/income.

Trimming costs or expenditure that will have little impact on your future financial prospects makes sense.

Trimming “investment” costs that could have a positive impact makes less sense.

We recommend that your take this distinction into your planning for 2024. And if you need help creating plans, pick up the phone. We can help.

Grenfell James Technology Adoption Index

How does your business perform against others adopting financial tech? Find out with our interactive diagnostic:


How does your business receive invoices?


Invoices are mainly received in paper form


Invoices are mainly received by email


Invoices are emailed then automatically forwarded to a designated mailbox


How are purchase invoices processed?


Invoices are entered manually


Invoices are attached to manually raised invoices


Automated software (e.g. ReceiptBank, 1Tap, HubDoc etc) collates invoices


How are accounts processed?


Using Excel/paper-based


Using Computer-based, offline software


Using cloud-based accountancy software


How often is business data revised?


Data is updated annually


Data is updated quarterly


Data is updated monthly or more often


How is banking updated for your business?


Banking is updated manually


Banking is updated by imports


Banking is updated via a live feed


How are bank payments made?


Bank payments are manual


Bank payments are made using bulk imports


Bank payments are made directly via accounting software


How are bank receipts reconciled?


Receipts are chased and reconciled manually


Receipts are chased and reconciled automatically


A third-party platform is used to chase debts and collect fees


How often are management reports produced?


No reports are provided


Reports are provided but often too late to be valuable


Reports are automated with real-time information

Score 8-12:

Curious Exploration

Your financial technology phase is Curious Exploration

% of respondent businesses are in this phase too.

Switching accountancy systems may seem like an upheaval, but can be much more straightforward than most businesses imagine. From talking to our clients, they have found moving from paper invoicing and desktop-based accounting software to the cloud and apps quickly makes the transition process a worthwhile investment of time. Digital accounting solutions bring in streamlined processes, up-to-date business data and greater confidence in the accuracy of information when making financial decisions.

Grenfell James works with your team to fully assess the needs of your business and minimise the impact of any transitions for solutions we recommend.

Find out more about App Advisory


Score 13-19:

Measured Discovery

Your financial technology phase is Measured Discovery

% of respondent businesses are in this phase too.

Once cloud accountancy software is in place, there’s still plenty of scope to improve your accountancy processes and make sure your business is maximising the benefits of adopting a digital accounting solution. Grenfell James assesses each business to understand how any implemented solutions are being used, identify areas for improvement and the needs of the business overall to support your business goals and achieve success.

Our team of experts can discuss a range of time-saving automation and get different apps and cloud-based solutions talking to create and manage a digital accountancy eco-system to help your business grow.

Find out more about App Advisory


Score 20-24:

Bold Innovation

Your financial technology phase is Bold Innovation

% of respondent businesses are in this phase too.

You know the benefits of accounting technology and the impact it can have on your business goals. If you want to take it a step further, our team can conduct a systematic review of your processes, apps and business goals to ensure your digital accountancy ecosystem is keeping pace with the changing needs of a growing business.