If you are having issues with your accounting processes and if these processes are not running efficiently, you should always try to address these issues. Your firm’s financial department plays a vital role in the organization’s efficiency and therefore should not be neglected or overlooked. The best accounting departments share common traits in the ways that they utilize the employee’s skill sets and minimize needless operations. Below you will find some of these practices and why they are important for any team.
1. Process in batches
Processing transactions in batches will greatly improve your accounting department’s time management. Sometimes accountants are eager to process every transaction and every check right as they come. While this is a good way of having a high response rate, it is highly inefficient. Processing checks or other specific transactions at periodic dates (once per week or twice per week) will result in less time spent on processing tasks and more time spent on organizing and chiseling your books.
2. Learn all of the tricks and shortcuts that your accounting software has to offer
Most accountants do not mind manually crunching numbers and processing their work. However, your accounting software most likely has a ton of tools to automatically do a large portion of the work for you. If you are not sure of what your accounting software can do for you then do not hesitate to contact us and receive consultations from our qualified specialists. Also, most of the accounting tools commonly used have a ton of material online on how to best utilize them.
3. Optimize the inter-departmental processes
One thing that has always frustrated accounting departments is when other departments are untimely with their invoices and requests. It is important to establish clear and strict deadlines for the submission of files to the accounting department. This goes the other way as well! It is important for efficient work-flow that your firm periodically reviews their processes and see whether some steps are redundant or too time-consuming.
4. Invest time in creating your optimal chart of accounts
Your chart of accounts should be more than just the required accounts for tax purposes. It is highly recommended that you invest time and even hire experts to best optimize your chart of accounts so that your accounting tools are not only used for compliance but they also serve as the fundamental tool for cost accounting.
5. Download transactions and reconcile bank statements consistently
Balancing your bank should always be done in a timely manner. If you allow your bank statements to pile up, issues and errors are very likely to occur. By reconciling your banks periodically and consistently, you reduce the chance for mistakes to happen and you ensure that the team has enough time to spot and resolve any incorrect transaction.
6. Back-up your records
While most of the currently used accounting software are cloud-based, it is still a good habit to create back-ups. These backups can either be physical copies of your books and details, or have them stored in a hard drive. Although this process may be time consuming, but having both a physical and an electronic back-up is the best way to protect your firm from electronic and physical breaches.