We recently asked our friend Soonah Walkom from Astute Administration services to give us some tips for small business owners to help them stay on top of their business administration.
This is what she had to say.

As your business grows so does your day to day transactions! You have double the clients, double the transactions, double the paperwork!  (and half the time to do it in).

In this blog I wanted to share some tips, tricks and software programs that can help to simplify and even automate many of the bookkeeping functions of your business.


Tip 1: Jump into the cloud

Cloud-based software programs are great! If you have not made the move – this is a must. These programs allow you to quote, invoice and have access to your database on any device. But the big time-saver of these is the ability for ‘bank feeds’ which allow all of your bank accounts transactions to automatically feed into your program for you to reconcile – no more data entry.

Astute Assist –Our pick at the moment for price and features would be Quickbooks online starting at $10 a month.

Tip 2 – Software Set-up

Now that you have a cloud based program that allows for bank feeds you must automate your reoccurring transactions. What does this mean? Those expenses or income that are the same each month for example your rent expense. You can have this expense automatically reconciled (called bank rules) to the ‘rent-expense’ account without you having to do a thing – well other than set it up in the first place. Once you get going you will be amazed at how many transactions you have that are reoccurring.

Astute Assist – If you have regular monthly invoices set these up as an automatic invoice that can then be emailed directly to your client each month without you having to do a thing. Bonus, You can also have overdue invoices emailed out once they reach 7 days overdue!

Tip 3 – Get Photographing

Is that pile of receipts in the glove box piling up? Is the shoebox overflowing? NO longer do you need to keep them, you can use your software app to take photos of your receipts that will feed into your software program. The bonus is you then have access to them online. Lets say you go to Bunnings when you sit back in the car before you turn the key, grab your phone and take a photo, this will be uploaded and coded in your bookkeeping program before you arrive at the next job!

Astute Assist – While each program has their own product they do come with limitations, Receipt Bank would be the front runner and has great tools for extra automation.

Tip 4 – Cash is King

For small to medium sized business, CASH-FLOW is king, it will make or break your business especially at times of rapid growth. As yourself these five questions

  1. Do I know the difference between profit and cash flow?
  2. How much does my business expect to earn in the future?
  3. What proportion of my earning is liquid?
  4. How much do my outgoings amount to?
  5. Are there any areas of the business not making money?

Astute Assist – Spend some time writing down your business goals and turn these goals into budgets. You can then monitor these budgets to your actuals each month and make adjustments accordingly.

Now that you have the business transactions side of things under control! Lets move onto the payroll. There are no many business around these days that can afford to have a full-time admin staff let alone someone who is qualified in payroll processing. The great news is that there are also some things that you can do to help systemise this part of your business.

  • Timesheets – convert them from the paper version to an electronic one. Your bookkeeping packing will have the ability for you staff to log their times electronically through an app. These timesheets can then be signed off by you at anytime from anywhere ready for processing.
  • Outsource – Don’t be afraid to outsource this part of your business. You can advise them of your own unique set of pay rules such as penalties allowances, overtime and rostered days off. Or if you are paying staff under an award, remove all your manual calculations and pre-fill one of the modern awards which will automate the pay rates, allowances and accruals – Astute Assist – check out Keypay.

I hope that you have picked up a few, or at least one, simple tool that you can implement into your business to simplify your bookkeeping. Of course if it all seems like too much we can tailor and implement a Business Bundle that suits your business needs!


Soonah Walkom is the Owner and Director of Astute Administration Services you can look her up here www.bookkeepergoldcoast.com