1. KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid):
Most small businesses do not need a Chart of Accounts 3 pages long. How many services/products do you provide? How many expense categories do you have? Write these lists down and make sure you are not over complicating your life with accounts and journal entries that are not necessary to create actionable data from your accounting system. Oh, and be consistent! Make sure you understand what goes where within your accounting system. Make a Chart of Accounts definition spreadsheet to ensure consistency.
2. Cash flow is king:
Stay on top of your receivables. One of the main reasons that businesses can’t sustain themselves is due to poor cash flow management. Late payments can damage your cash flow, making operating your business more difficult. Set up a consistent receivable system that allows you to keep track of outstanding invoices that are 30, 60 and 90+ days overdue through an AR aging report.
3. Be a boy scout:
Be prepared and PLAN! This may sound simple, but planning ahead will help a business in the long run. Think of upcoming expenses and deadlines that the business will have to prepare for in the near future. Schedule specific times during the work week to focus on organizing the income and expenses as well as planning for what lies ahead. Being prepared and organized is a must in business today. As the saying goes, “If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.”
4. Think like a doomsday prepper:
Many small businesses work on a shoestring budget, but the unexpected will happen and you need to be prepared. Sync your online credit card accounts with your accounting software to reduce time, but also to keep a close eye on your available credit.
5. Call in the cavalry:
If bookkeeping is not for you, finding someone to do the job efficiently and quickly can be an easy and cost efficient task. You can find a bookkeeper or outsourced service that can make quality use of your accounting software to get exactly what you want from it. You can work closely with your bookkeeper to stay on top of all of the important information about your business.