Does the owner need to be involved in the bookkeeping process? YES. YES. and YES!
I know what you’re thinking – the whole reason I outsourced my bookkeeping is to not have to deal with it.
I’m sorry. That’s a hard NOT GONNA HAPPEN. You may not be an bookkeeper but you must be involved in the bookkeeping process because you know your business best.
As a business owner, ultimately you are responsible for your numbers. You outsource to save time, but you must..repeat MUST…be part of the bookkeeping process. There is still an administrative component that falls under your TO DO list.
Here are 5 Tips to Make the Bookkeeping Process Better for the Owner
1. Provide the detailed bookkeeping support
You need to provide
- receipts for your expenses
- invoices for your sales
- Bank statements and credit card statements
In addition to the actual documents, you need to provide details for anything that is not obvious. That invoice has a whole story for you, but to the bookkeeper it’s just a piece of paper. This is especially true for any out of the ordinary transactions that you may go through – document document document so that when we need to do the bookkeeping we can follow the chain of events. A “simple” transaction may not necessarily equal a simple bookkeeping entry!
2. Keep it Simple S*****
The more complicated you make your transactions, the more complex the bookkeeping, the more prone to mistakes you are. Chart out your systems – what does a customer process look like? What are the key points that will trigger a possible accounting entry. Same with your expense cycle. Then document anything that falls out of this ordinary process.in
These processes should also be reviewed with your bookkeeper so they understand your business.
The first year of working together will be a learning curve for you both as sometimes the bookkeeper will require something from an accountant perspective, that you the business owner wouldn’t have thought of generating. Communication is key!
3. Don’t borrow from Peter to pay Paul
Don’t use multiple bank accounts, credit cards and mix business and personal – especially if incorporated. You need to account for every dollar and the more money being passed around the messier the bookkeeping becomes. There are ways to keep it simple even during cash crunched moments. This is where you need to chat with your accountant and bookkeeper about best practices.
4. Review Review Review – on a timely basis!
You must review the account balances with your bookkeeper. This is easier to do it monthly because the transactions are fresh in your mind, but at the latest quarterly. When you do a year’s worth of business in one shot, it’s very hard to remember what happened months ago.
Did you, as a business owner, find the bookkeeping process frustrating? Have an honest open conversation together – what were the issues you faced in the process? What can be done to make life easier ? If the documentation was clear and the bookkeeper was making mistakes then perhaps it’s time to find a new bookkeeper. However, if there were issues in understanding the transaction because of <insert reason here> then those are issues that can be fixed for the next bookkeeping cycle.
Your numbers tell the story of your business and without proper bookkeeping you won’t know what’s working and what’s not. Timely bookkeeping will eliminate many issues because it’s fresh in your mind. Keeping detailed notes will help you remember any transaction that fell out of your normal system process.
Ultimately you need to find a system that supports you as a business owner but you will have a role in the bookkeeping process! You will always know your transactions best!
Interested in outsourcing your bookkeeping? Let’s chat – book a time here