The day-to-day schedule of a small to medium-sized business owner is a hectic one. Growing your business means wearing all the hats, putting out all the fires and keeping a smile on through the whole thing to get your customers the products and services they need.
Modern businesses require the ability to navigate the social media landscape, the in-person face-to-face customer interaction and everything in between. And then there are the time-consuming accounting and bookkeeping tasks that are part of all business endeavours. There must be a way to alleviate some of the workload somewhere… right?
Choosing Where to Streamline Your Business
Of course, there are always ways to make your life as a business owner a little easier. That is why streamlining your accounting processes is a great way to improve efficiency and take some of the weight off your shoulders.
Changing your habits and the processes around your accounting are often cost-free or relatively inexpensive and have outsized impacts, especially when you consider what you get in return. What exactly are the benefits of streamlining your accounting process?
What are the Benefits of Streamlining Your Accounting
- Reduces Human Errors
Human errors are the leading cause of errors in accounting, particularly when it comes to tax time. Streamlining your accounting processes won’t eliminate all errors but it will make them easier to spot and fix before they become real problems.
- Better Time Management
Spending your time more wisely through more efficient methods is always going to increase the ROI on your time, making a streamlining campaign well worth the effort. Better time management will allow you to focus on the other parts of your business and create positive changes elsewhere in your organization.
- Better Organization
Disorganized parts of your life are known to cause problems in concentration and reduce efficacy. Better organization will lead to easier access to information, less error and misplaced documents, as well as give you peace of mind in knowing that everything is taken care of and easily accessible.
How to Streamline Your Accounting Processes
Knowing why you should be streamlining your accounting processes is a great place to start but practically speaking, you need to have concrete steps to take to create long-lasting and positive change.
All businesses are different and have varying levels of needs when it comes to their accounting systems. A small business with 10 employees will need solutions that differ from the company that has 40 employees, as will companies that are based online as opposed to a physical location. These tips are universal enough that they should lend themselves to most companies looking to streamline their processes. What are some steps you could take?
- Have a Proper Filing System
The only thing worse than pulling out a cardboard box full of receipts at the end of the month and trying to organize them is not having any clue where any of them are yet still knowing you need to get your books done. A proper filing system, whether that be an old-school, physical filing cabinet or a digital filing system, is vital to keep those records organized for easy access and retrieval.
- Use Accounting and Management Software
You are great at running and growing your business, whatever that business is. The accounting part is, for most business owners, a task that they must endure. That is why you should use accounting and management software to help you do it properly.
These programs are developed by professionals whose passion is bookkeeping and accounting. Leverage their expertise and use software to help keep you organized and on-point. As these technologies continue to improve, they can play an important role in streamlining your accounting systems.
- Automate Your Accounting Processes
Automate as much as possible! Have any credit cards or purchasing accounts send statements to the same email address and physical locations. Have automatic bill payments and invoicing for regular clients if possible. Everything that can be automated, should be automated. This reduces the probability of human error or forgetfulness.
Automated data entry is an exciting new technology that allows you to extract data and have it automatically entered into its proper place, removing the need for you (or someone else) to do it.
- Have Standard Practices and Procedures
Standardization allows for consistency and predictability in your accounting records. The way you pay your bills, log your finances and keep your books should always be the same. Your standardized practices should be available to all employees through some type of checklist and all employees dealing with accounting issues should be properly trained and briefed on your procedures.
- Use Apps that Compliment Your Accounting System
There are so many apps that can be leveraged to complement your bookkeeping that it shouldn’t be hard to find the right one for you. The beauty of this is that with all the different options available, you are bound to find an app that can help you keep your finances and accounting organized that matches your budget and your tastes.
- Delegate Accounting Tasks to Others
Not everything has to be done by you! Understandably, handing off a task as important as your finances and accounting to an employee can be difficult to do but by delegating tasks to those you trust, you free up time and mental space for other tasks.
Find a task that you are willing to delegate, train someone to do it properly (and your way) and check back to ensure they are doing it right. Once you have found someone that you feel comfortable delegating tasks to, you can off load some accounting responsibilities that are keeping you from other parts of your business or life without worrying or stressing too much.
Streamline Your Accounting Processes Today
The other option available is to outsource some or all your accounting tasks to a third party. They can ensure that you are in compliance with all applicable laws and create a foolproof system for you and your accounting program.
Whatever you choose, streamlining your accounting processes has all benefits and no downsides so don’t wait and get your accounting processes streamlined today.