“If you want to achieve it measure it”, is an oft used cliché that has relevance here. You compare year to year to determine whether the enterprise is moving forward, sideways or backwards. The essential ingredient in measurement is to consistently use the same metric. When the enterprise matures the accounting period is usually one item that is tweaked to better reflect the fundamentals of the business. This enables better year to year comparisons and aids in the ongoing business planning process.
There are a variety of fiscal periods divided into a Jan –Dec calendar year. The most prevalent divide the year into quarters with a 5-4-4, 4-4-5 or 4-5-4 combination of weekly periods. The advantage is that you will be able to compare week 21 of one year with week 21 of another year and they represent the same Monday – Sunday weekly period.
Restaurants weekly periods can also shift. An example would be a café in a downtown office building is probably closed on Saturday and Sunday, so a Monday – Sunday fiscal week is perfect. A tourist restaurant which has high weekend traffic would choose a Wednesday – Tuesday fiscal week.
As the sun sets and blends into night, the fiscal periods for many are ending as September Wanes!