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accountants and bookkeepers

5 reasons why you should automate your practice

Rather than switching to a paperless practice, aim to develop an automated routine that increases work efficiency, time management and focus. Taking this step also helps to ensure that your clients receive value for money. Here are five actions you can take to streamline your firm.

1. First, automate as much as you can

Automating your practice is essential to operate a successful accounting or bookkeeping business. This will support your growth trajectory and make your life easier. 

This was the message delivered by Denise Twigger, founder and director of BAS and Balances, at the 2022 Get Connected event hosted by Intuit QuickBooks.

2. Change your mindset when switching to paperless

Every bookkeeper and accountant has a preferred way they like to work and process data. That said, it’s important to continually embrace new technology to support your ongoing business growth.   

“It's about changing that mindset for you, your clients and your future clients. Because they want to work with bookkeepers who can save them time,” Twigger said. 

“A lot of bookkeepers are still doing manual entry and driving around to a client’s place to pick up paperwork and bring it back to the practice, where they will process it. This just takes time. So, challenge this way of operating,” she said.

3. Record the details behind transactions

There is always a story behind a transaction and it’s important to record this detail to make sense of the accounts. Simply putting a figure in the debit or credit column won’t help make your practice more efficient, assist in understanding spending patterns or identify the firm’s biggest clients. This is why recording the details is so important. 

“You have to start with a transaction, because without that, what have we got? How does an accountant do the end of year stuff? What do we tell the ATO? If you don't transact, you've got nothing to go by,” Twigger said. 

“We need to know the transactions. I have a rule in my practice, every transaction has to be recorded, whether it is for one cent or a million dollars and our clients have to provide the details behind the transactions,” she said.

Additionally, proper coding for transactions enables a practice to function more efficiently and gives you invaluable insight as an accountant or bookkeeper helping your clients plan.

Take the stress out of managing your firm

4. What a paperless practice really looks like

Being able to scan receipts using software such as Dext means there is no need for paper boxes clogging up your study with printed material. Also, having everything stored electronically means there is less chance of you losing printed data by accident.

“We have been paperless now for more than seven years. Everything is stored in the cloud. We use document storage system SuiteFiles as electronic storage capture. It’s a really beautiful system for producing client engagement letters that require signatures,” Twigger said. 

“It’s all about educating your clients. Start by encouraging them to take photos of receipts so we can create clean files for them online that won’t fade like shoebox receipts,” she said.

5. The right software makes everyone’s lives easier

There are many different digital tools that integrate with Intuit QuickBooks to make accountants’ and bookkeepers’ work so much simpler.

For example, Dext allows clients to upload invoices and receipts into Intuit QuickBooks, eliminating the need to physically store receipts. Another great tool, Employment Hero, automates pay runs, award calculations and superannuation payments.

These systems are just some of the options available to accountants and bookkeepers to automate their work. Other options such as LodgeiT, which helps to automate tax compliance, are other pieces of the paperless practice puzzle.

All these tools seamlessly integrate with Intuit QuickBooks.

Next steps

Having all your clients’ accounting needs taken care of online is an intelligent way to optimise your time and help your clients run their business better. Take the chance to review the five lessons we set out in this blog and how these apply to your practice. It might be time to make some changes if you’re not already going down the automation path.

Intuit QuickBooks automates a huge range of different accounting and bookkeeping tasks. It makes everything from preparing clients’ BAS to year-end tax filing streamlined and systematic. It’s a one-stop shop that supports accountants and bookkeepers to manage their practice, run their clients’ books and meet their compliance obligations.

Contact us today to find out more about how Intuit QuickBooks can streamline your practice so you have more time to spend working on your practice.

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