Blog|6 min

The Top 5 Accounting Tricks

Ever hear the saying “Work smarter, not harder?”  

Accounting represents an area ripe with this opportunity. Yet, many business owners still prefer to stumble through stuffing envelopes and data entry.

It’s time to evict inefficient processes and bring in their worthy technological counterparts. Items like ACH transfers, EFT payments, and bookkeeping automation let you convert manual accounting labor into free time. After all, what business owner has ever said they want less time in their lives?

Trick #1: Digital payments

Did you hear that? It’s the death knell for paper checks.

For centuries, checks have served accounts payable and accounts receivable admirably. They facilitated the exchange of money in a controlled manner. But that was when paper was the only option available for payments.

Now, digital payment types are resplendent. Vendor ACH, EFTs, credit cards, QuickBooks bill pay and more all exist with one purpose: to efficiently transfer money from one entity to another.

Want to compare?

Here’s the paper check process for bill payments:

  • Receive mailed bill.

  • Review it and move it to the next approver by putting it on John’s desk.

  • John takes a week to review it and eventually passes it on to Maria.

  • Maria approves it immediately but puts it on the wrong desk.

  • You stumble from desk to desk looking for it.

  • You finally find it (thanks, Maria) and send it through for payment.

  • It sits on another desk before it’s time to print checks.

  • Cue the supply and money drain via check stock, printer cartridges, stamps, and envelopes.

  • Then the next game—find the check signer.

We could go on for a while, but with digital payments you can nix the entire print, hunt, and stuff process. Payment starts online. Payment finishes online. No need to play hide and seek with the only person authorized to sign checks. And no need to mail them out and wait to reconcile them after they’ve cleared.

Easy. Efficient. And you’ve just saved yourself a ton of time.

Trick #2: Automation

No one has time for paper.

With bookkeeping automation:

  • A bill enters the system. It evaluates it against your corporate guidelines and automatically selects and begins the review process. John already has it. He reviews it.

  • The solution moves it to the next reviewer. Maria has it. She’s a little slow because she’s landing a gigantic account for the company. Guess what? The solution automatically reminds her to look at that bill.

  • Maria finishes, and it goes through the final person for authorization to pay.

That whole process that used to take weeks, and involve mind-numbing work, distills into an efficient, online process.

Automation helps AR as well. It creates and sends invoices as directed. It even deducts recurring payments from client accounts on a regular schedule. (Your cash flow will thank you for that one.)

And here’s another benefit of bookkeeping automation: It tracks every single activity. One click and an authorized user can see who reviewed a bill. If there were notes, when and how it was paid? When was it delivered to the vendor? This saves you an amazing amount of time when vendors call to ask about a payment status. It also means that, when it’s audit time, you’re no longer wading into the paper ocean of bills, check stubs, and scrawled notes.

You’re no longer tracking down a status and calling people. You’re taking that time back!

Trick #3: Integrations

What’s the purpose of bringing in efficiency for AP and AR if it means manual data entry into other systems?

It seems odd, but if you don’t integrate solutions, then that’s what you’re facing—printing data out of one system and then manually entering those figures into another system. What a waste.

You must integrate so that your systems automatically share appropriate information. For example, integrates with accounting systems such as QuickBooks Online, Xero, Intacct, and NetSuite. Vital information is exchanged between the systems, meaning no more data entry (and data entry errors) and a real-time, accurate picture of your financial performance.

Trick #4: Mobile apps

These days, it’s borderline offensive if software doesn’t offer a mobile app. If a system is tied only to one computer and location, efficiency is doomed.

Here’s what bill payment looks like without a mobile app:

“I can’t leave the office until this is done. AND I get to stay late to stuff checks into envelopes.”

It also looks like this:

“I have to make a special trip to the office JUST to sign checks.”

No one is happy in either of these scenarios.

Here’s what bill payment looks like with a mobile app:

“I have a solid five minutes while I’m in the airport waiting for my flight. I’ll open the app, review bills, and be done.”

Same goes for check signing. The app lets you complete all the necessary bill payment tasks from the palm of your hand. No more special trips to the office to sign checks. No more late nights.

Just more time for you.

Trick #5: The solution releases you from accounting drudgery by providing these features—and more. Reclaim your valuable time now.


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