There are two types of businesses: those that have had tough financial times already, and…
Ease Your Financial Stress With These 5 Apps
Not so very long ago, bookkeeping meant hours of data entry, reconciliations and headaches.
It meant waiting for the monthly bank statement to arrive in the post, daily visits to the bank to deposit cheques and often manual systems to keep track of who owed you money.
I love technology and the massive changes that now eliminate so many of these old tasks, or if not eliminate, massively save time. The first app that significantly changed these processes was Xero. Although, not first to the market, it has been the leader in disrupting the old desktop accounting software systems and the base from which so many more efficiencies have been developed.
My number 1 app – Xero.
Xero automates the data entry by importing the business banking transactions directly into the system. It auto matches receipts and payments against invoices already in the system. I’ve seen time savings of up to 75% of the time in this area alone. Not only that, but many businesses can quickly reconcile their bank transactions in less than 10 minutes a day thus keeping their records up-to-date every day.
My number 2 app – Receipt Bank.
Receipt Bank takes the automation one step further by using character recognition systems to automatically extract the data from invoices. You simply scan your receipt or send invoices received on email directly to Receipt Bank and the system extracts the name of the supplier, the date, the description, the total amount, the GST and so on. No more need to keep those pesky little receipts, just take a photo on your phone, send it to Receipt Bank and you can through away the receipt.
One client who was using MYOB was paying a bookkeeper to come to the business four hours per week to keep the records up-to-date. Once we converted the information into Xero and set up Receipt Bank, they now have a bookkeeper in a different city who averages one hour per week to do the same work.
My number 3 app – Deputy.
For businesses with staff, Deputy provides a complete online human resources and employee management system that keeps track of time records and is particularly useful for rostering with a time clock built in.
Whilst Xero does the payroll calculations it has a very basic timesheet reporting functionality. Deputy provides the extra capabilities which can be handy even for a small team.
My number 4 app – Cin7.
Cin7 is an inventory system but so much more than that. Cin7 has developed integrations with multiple online store systems, including Amazon and major retail outlets. It does all the inventory management you could want, and although their target market is the fashion industry, I’ve seen it used successfully by a building supply business.
My number 5 app – MyProsperity.
MyProsperity is like a Xero for your personal bank accounts. But then it does a lot more too. It will keep track of the value of your investments, allow you to budget your household income and expenses, provides storage for your important documents like your insurances and wills. This system is only available through a professional advisor.
I recently saw someone post on social media that Xero was expensive and whilst all things are relative; I disagree completely. Every one of these apps I’ve described will save you more time and costs than the investment in the apps. If you are doing the bookkeeping yourself, consider how much money you could be making if you were out promoting your business, selling your products and services, or working on your business. Alternatively, if you are paying a bookkeeper, think about how much money you could save in bookkeeping costs.
And more than the time and cost savings, which are considerable, there’s the benefit of having real-time data at your fingertips whenever you need it. The ability to look at the numbers and make a decision and to seek advice from your advisors who have instantaneous access to the same data that you have. These apps are gold.
One of my clients, Michael, resisted changing for two years. I’d regularly talk to him about the benefits, but he just didn’t want to change. His accounting software was on his laptop and when the hard drive died, so did his accounting information. Whilst he did do back-ups, he hadn’t done one for about six weeks which meant that he had to re-create the data, not only that but he lost all his other records too. That was the catalyst for him, he finally changed to Xero and within a month rang me and said to me, “That he wished that he’d listened to me when I first suggested he change and changed over then.” He had been fearful of change and having to learn a new system, but he told me he was delighted as it was just so easy to use and he was saving hours of time.
Don’t be like Michael. If you’re not using online systems for your accounting, make the change today. I promise you won’t regret it.
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