It's That Time of Year

03 March 2020

At last – we’ve reached the end of February, the days have started to draw out, we might even get some respite from the weather. Spring is in the air and a new financial year is on the horizon. Why not take the time to start planning for the year ahead? Maybe revisit some of the software solutions you are currently using in your business, and have a spring clean of some old practices. Here are just a few suggestions for areas you might like to consider: 

Document Capture 

You may already be using a cloud-based accounting platform, but are you really getting the full benefit of all the functionality associated with it? One of the areas which can significantly improve your processing, both in terms of time saved and accuracy of data being processed, is by the adoption of a document capture app.  

What does this mean? With document capture, documents are received electronically into the app, the software then extracts the data from the document and makes a suggested posting to your accounting software. You can review and approve the posting but it removes the need for manual data entry, which can not only give significant time-savings but also gives increased accuracy – the software will learn from your postings and apply this to future transactions, thereby reducing the risk of inconsistent posting of expenses. Furthermore, as the image of the document is captured this is also available to view from any device, making it easier to share information with colleagues, approvers etc. 

There are various document capture apps available, and Xero have announced that their own document capture app, Hubdoc, will be included with Xero subscriptions from March. The decision as to which to use will depend on the functionality you require, and at AAB we can help guide you in making the choice. 

Expenses 

Maybe your business is still using a spreadsheet-based expense claim system, with all the delays and frustrations that can go along with that; whether waiting for approval processes to be completed, chasing missing credit card receipts or receiving claims for expenses incurred some time previously. There are a variety of solutions available which are not necessarily dependent on using one particular piece of accounting software, and can be used with desktop accounting systems as well as those based in the cloud.  

Employees can snap their receipts and fill in their claims on the go – look around any coffee shop and see how many people you can spot taking photos of their receipts, you’ll see how widespread the adoption of this technology is. Employees can also complete mileage claims, tracking miles travelled and allocating to projects where necessary for recharge to clients. Multi-stage approvals and approval delegation can also be set up for more complex organisations. 

Payroll 

If you have changed your accounting software to Xero but kept your payroll on a different platform now is a good time to make the switch to Xero payroll. Xero payroll offers an easy-to-use solution for both paying employees and managing time. From workplace pensions to timesheets, managing time off and expense approvals, and sharing payslip information. Xero Payroll also seamlessly integrates with your accounts, so you can save time on data entry, as well as making HMRC and pension submissions for you. 

Systems review 

If you’re in full spring-cleaning mode why not take the opportunity to do a complete review of your systems? It is very likely that you will find inefficiencies, frustrations and maybe duplications of processes. So often systems will have evolved over the life of the business but with the changing face of technology, what was once a problem – well, there’s now an app for that. Inventory, purchase approvals, credit control, reporting, cash flow – the list is endless. And because it’s endless it can seem intimidating.  

With a well-planned approach, a systems review will break your business down into operational and financial functions, focusing on existing practice and pain points, and identifying a solution. At AAB we have a Cloud Team who are skilled in – and enjoy - helping our clients find solutions. We engage with the leading app providers to ensure we match the best solution to a client’s needs – there is not one size that fits all – and we will be on hand to advise as you develop your system requirements. 

Whatever your needs, at AAB our Cloud Team can help you with that spring clean, replacing tired cumbersome processes with efficient, cost-effective solutions, and finding the best-of breed technology to work with you in your business.  

For more further information please contact Lynsey Taylor (lynsey.taylor@aab.uk) or your usual AAB contact. 

 

For more information on Lynsey and the Cloud Accounting team, click here.

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