How to automate your small business bookkeeping systems

how to automate small business bookkeeping

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Xero Bookkeeping Systems Automation

A lot of people dream of starting their own business and making money doing what they enjoy. Unfortunately, establishing a new business takes a lot of work. And for some, it can quickly take over their lives and turn their dream into a nightmare. They knew they’d be spending long days working in the business to make as many customers (and as much money) as possible. But what they didn’t count on was spending many more hours at night sorting out the admin and paperwork. And it isn’t long before the lack of sleep has them doubting themselves and asking questions like:

  • “Am I actually making any money?”
  • “Are we even going to survive?”
  • “How can I grow this business without it consuming every waking hour of my life?”

Accounting systems for small business

At Level we often talk to small business owners about the three pillars they should build their business on: numbers, systems and customers. And provided their business isn’t completely new, the one we find has the biggest impact on both their business and their lives is systems. In simple terms, systems describe how you perform certain tasks — what you do, when you do them and, most importantly, how you do them.

Often used to explain admin- and paperwork-related tasks, systems are designed so the same steps are performed in the same way every time. Which makes them perfect for a computer.

Technology to the rescue

We’re big fans of using technology to automate manual processing as much as possible. Imagine having your bookkeeping updated automatically every time your business made a sale, took a payment or spent some money. How much time would that save you? Instead of spending your nights doing the paperwork you could take your partner on a date, spend time with your kids, go to the gym or whatever else you enjoy doing in the evening.

why we subscribe all our clients to Xero, the online accounting system that’s easy to use. Once it’s set up, Xero can automate a lot of the bookkeeping tasks that have been keeping you awake at night. Best of all, by using various add-ons you can connect Xero to other systems. And with so many add-ons available, the possibilities are almost endless. Here’s how we’ve use add-ons from our trusted partners to take some of our clients’ businesses to the next level.

How Xero helps our clients

A trade client based in Wigan can now send invoices straight from his iPhone as soon as the work is complete. All he needs to do is tap a few numbers and it’s done. Not only can his customers pay the bill online immediately (so he gets paid quicker), his books are also updated automatically. The business can even take service bookings online, which then automatically updates the schedule on his iPhone. Another client who runs a hair salon in Bolton does a similar thing, although obviously in their case it all starts with the appointment.

Because each sale is automatically processed in Xero, their figures are always up to date. That’s means that at any time they can track what each customer spends, and see what products and services are (and aren’t) making money. These examples show why we’re such big believers in accounting systems for small business’. They’re both efficient and effective when implemented properly.

How Xero can help you

You may not think you have the time or the money to implement an online accounting system such as Xero in your business. But once you start using it you’ll see how it can give you more of both. With Xero doing your bookkeeping for you automatically, you’ll have more time to work on the business rather than in it. Because Xero is incredibly scalable, you’ll be able to grow the business without having to worry about the administration getting out of control.

As we mentioned earlier, one of the three pillars you should build your business on is numbers. With Xero you’ll always have up-to-date information so you can make decisions based on what’s actually happening rather than what you think (or hope) is happening.

And thanks to Xero’s add-ons, managing your customers will become a lot easier. You’ll have fewer cancellations, and spend far less time dealing with issues. If have any other questions, or would like more information about how Xero can change the way you do business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

Dan Ryder
Dan Ryder

Dan is the founder and managing director of Level Accounting. He's a specialist in helping individuals and small business with all things tax and accounting.

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