The whole is greater than the sum of its parts
Accounting and book keeping is to all intents and purposes about attention to detail and dealing with large amounts of data. Ever since double entry book keeping emerged in 14th century Italy (with some claims that it originated in Muslim states in the 7th Century), accountants have been using pen and paper to record entries and balance the books. See here for a brief history….
Computers and accounting software systems have made a huge impact on productivity. However many accountants and book keepers still enter a large amount of data by hand, whether that be logging invoices received, bank transactions, setting up new clients, raising sales invoices etc.
Sage, Quickbooks, Xero or any of the many cloud based accounting programmes all now have functions where you can import and export data and record transactions through excel (or csv files).
Some examples of Importing data:
If your company takes payments using a card terminal, you should receive a report from your merchant payment provider with details about the individual transactions. You can use this report as the basis for which to import transactions to mark the relevant invoices as paid and reconcile match it with the equivalent transactions in your accounting programme. All you need to do is format the file to make it ready for upload into the relevant accounting package.
Examples of Exporting data:
You can export data, nominal codes, P&L statements etc and use excel to format, rework, check and analyse your financial information. If you find that you are doing the same actions each time, consider using excel macros and formulas to automate these tasks. It’s amazing how much time can be saved by automating steps you do daily, monthly or quarterly.
Data entry by hand is probably one of the most boring tasks, and ensuring typos and errors don’t creep in can be time consuming. If someone has already entered information electronically, why not use their work to build on, instead of duplicating it.
So, next time you sit in front of your accounting programme, say to yourself ‘surely there’s a quicker way…’. If you suspect the answer is yes, I can help you find that way. Contact me for a free consultation.