Top Tips to Keep Your Bookkeeping in Tip Top Shape—Series #4

No matter the size of your business, it is unimaginable how it would properly function without a solid bookkeeping system in place. It serves a great purpose for tax preparation, succession planning and financial reports for making business growth decisions. Also gives a concrete indication of your company’s success and sustainability. But to maintain your books, keeping them accurate, timely and reliable is one of the biggest challenges. After all, you got into business to sell a product or provide a service, not to do bookkeeping. Let’s get it in shape and keep it that way.

  1. Invest in a Quality Document Management Solution
    Managing a business’ finances, organized documents that are necessary to keep, is the key to maintaining accurate and reliable books. Don’t skip steps in this area. Search out a quality document management solution, which doesn’t have to cost a lot in order to do an efficient job. Investing the needed time to learn and develop your system, this is where the real investment is. Learn the program and how it works with your style of organizing. This will help streamline and simplify the process of managing financial documents, such as day-to-day expenses, payables, receivables, receipts, and invoices. This will significantly help you minimize the ‘search and seek’ time when reconciling each month. It also allows you to exchange and share files with your accountant—from receipts to invoices to tax forms.

  2. Shared Expenses Between Business & Personal
    If you use something for both business and personal purposes (such as a cell phone), you can deduct a percentage of the expenses on your tax return based on the percentage of business use, but you’ll need detailed call logs and other documentation to back that up. If you use your car for your business, keep detailed records and include your mileage log in your bookkeeping so you can deduct a percentage of your vehicle expenses on your tax return. Your home office has similar guidelines. Be sure to your CPA or tax preparer is aware of these shared expenses and discuss the options you have for allowing the deduction on your tax return.

  3. Use Apps to Support Your Cloud-Based Accounting Software
    QuickBooks is a very commonly used software that does a lot of work in a few clicks of a button. Cloud accounting software is connects to your bank daily, retrieves the transactions that line up in the queue to be assessed and addressed. This eliminates the old-fashioned manual entry. By using cloud accounting software along with apps, your manual work will be cut significantly, helping to align with your time management goals.

QuickBooks has approved Apps that work to minimize manual work, such as retrieving documents, specialized reporting ability, invoicing right within Gmail, even connecting PayPal to your bookkeeping. Finding approved, and well-reviewed Apps will minimize your manual work, thus avoiding human error and allowing better time management.

Hubdoc is another well-known App. Connect your bank accounts, utilities, dues, and subscription accounts and let Hubdoc fetch those documents daily. You will no longer have to fetch the statements, copies of the checks, and bills. You can also download reports and documents when you need them, then save them in your cloud-based document management system.

 This fourth in the blog series, assists in developing procedures that maximize efficiency for you and your customers. Efficient processes are cost effective, making a positive impact on your bottom line. If you follow my series, and implement these changes, you will soon be in tip top shape, ready for changes, growth and more. You will be better prepared for a tax planning session in the 4th quarter, helping you to make the most tax advantageous decisions for your business. See you next month!