Time is Money – Stop wasting your time and save money with your bookkeeping
Do you hate doing paperwork? Paperwork takes us away from making money – right?
You are certainly not alone. We rationalize leaving these mundane tasks on our to do list because we could be making more money, furthering business growth or even having some fun. No matter what your business is; a restaurant, retail store, service company and even nonprofit organizations, good paperwork control will lead to a better bottom line.
A huge way to save time is to handle pieces of paper and your email only once. You might have an admin assistant, an in-house bookkeeper or outsource your bookkeeping to a qualified accountant or accounting firm. When you multiply the number of times different individuals touch the same piece of paper or emails, costs begin to soar.
If you have no one to delegate this work to, then consider how you achieve efficiency with your paperwork. Do you complete each task as it comes in or set a time each week to do these mundane tasks? Depending on the size of your business and the number of transactions you have each week, you may only need to plan on 30 minutes a day or even a week to stay on top of this work.
Week 1 Tip – Organize Receipts
As a Bookkeeper for small businesses, there are countless stories of how business owners have relinquished their “books” to me. And I am not kidding! I have received:
- Years and years of papers and receipts in a garbage bag.
- Boxes full of papers not all applicable to the work, such as six issues of Cat Fancy magazines with IRS notices mixed in the pages.
- Receipts for cash spent…….receipts for credit card purchases…..receipts for debit card purchases, etc….
You could spend hours of time organizing a pile of little scraps of paper matching these to bank statements and credit card statements. Keeping these organized throughout the month or separating them before giving them to your bookkeeper can save you between $50 and $150 in your billable time or payroll each month.
Methods to Handle Receipts:
- Eliminate Staples – they are a bane to my existence. If you have an opportunity to ask the sales clerk to not use a staple, that is a great first step.
- Write Notes on your Receipts – Another thing you can do with these little scraps of paper is write on them. Write who you had lunch with, which vehicle you filled with gas, which job the expense is for, etc. This information will be put in the memo field of your accounting software. This will help you in the event of an audit by the IRS, it will help your accountant find errors when doing your taxes and if you do use a bookkeeper, it will help the expense correctly.
- Paper clip all receipts together (if you are not entering them into your accounting software yourself.
- If you are entering them, NOW IS THE TIME! Put each receipt into the computer with all corresponding information:
- Expense Category
- Notes/Memo (as in #2 above)
- The best next step is to file the receipts into your computer by scanning them. A good scanner will handle the receipts in their original paper slips. Just make sure there are no staples! Once they are scanned, you can shred them.
- Otherwise, file them into your folder filing system. I file mine by vendor in an alphabetical accordion file. You might do it by month in your Receipts folder. Either way, if you are not scanning them, you want to put them away in an organized method.
If you need more clarity in anything I have mentioned above, email me and I will help you out. Next week I will talk more about bringing home the bacon (getting paid for what you do.)
Ronda Lane – In the Black Accounting ~ In the Black That’s the Point!