Eight tools for a happy new financial year in Australia
Accountant & Bookkeeper Guides
4 min read
Do you find the end of financial year a hassle? A lot of those frustrations are unnecessary. Modern accounting tools allow you to sidestep many of the usual holdups. Consider introducing them in the new financial year.
The same old new financial year resolution
At the end of every financial year, most accountants say the same thing – next year’s got to be different. The hectic run up to tax season is a minefield of incomplete ledgers, missing paperwork and unfocused clients.
Many accountants spend hours helping business owners dig for missing data. It’s not fun at the time – and even less so when it comes time to pass on the cost. Clients are often surprised how much basic disorganisation can cost.
Swearing to make next EOFY better
Many EOFY headaches are a result of the systems that clients use for bookkeeping rather than the ones accountants use. But that doesn’t mean you have to give up on a better EOFY.
Managing clients is a fact of life for most businesses. Helping them meet their tax reporting obligations in a timely manner is a big part of any accountant’s job. When you succeed at it, you’re improving their lives as much as yours.
Avoid that sinking feeling when you find coding errors in client data.
Eight tools to make things run more smoothly
Online accounting makes it much easier to keep clients organised. As a bonus, it slashes data-handling within your firm. Here’s how it can change the new financial year.
1. Take away data entry
Once you link a client's business bank accounts to online accounting software, their transaction data flows straight through to the ledger. At least now the data’s in there, which is half the battle. You can also sync POS, inventory and expense-processing apps to the client’s online ledger.
2. Make bank rec far less gruelling
Clients hate bank rec – and you can’t train them to like it – but you can make it far less daunting. With bank feeds on, they can categorise transactions daily. Now it’s a 5-minute job that they can do on their phone over a coffee, rather than a punishing ordeal at the end of each month.
3. See who’s running behind
You need to coax most clients to stay on top of their books. Online accounting makes it far easier. Instead of waiting till the end of the quarter to see how far they’re behind, check their ledger whenever you like, and encourage some action before there’s an EOFY emergency.
4. Spot key expenditure
Busy clients can forget to tell their advisor about business purchases. Checking online accounts will alert you to significant activity. Then you can ask your client to send along the paperwork for insurance and filing purposes.
5. End EOFY data double-handling
Transcribing spreadsheets or desktop ledgers into your practice’s tax software is tedious and unnecessarily repetitive. With the right online software, the ledger data can be pulled instantly into the tax program. That’s a massive time, cost, and sanity saver.
6. Fix mistakes faster...
Avoid that sinking feeling when you find coding errors in client data. You don’t have to spend hours checking all similar entries yourself. Instead, you can pull them up in an instant and set a rule to recode them all.
7. ...and fix them once
When correcting client data using an online system, your edits are copied immediately to their ledger too. That saves you the hassle of manually duplicating edits, and it means you don’t have to stop clients from going into their software while you make updates.
8. Lock data down
Once you’ve processed a tax year, it’s nice to put it to bed for good. Get online software that allows you to lock down the data when you’re done with it. That prevents people from accidentally adding new income or expenses, which can cause a nightmare next EOFY.
Have a happy new financial year Australia
Once accounts are set up online, tax preparation becomes much simpler. Data entry goes away, allowing clients to focus their effort on bank reconciliation, which also becomes much easier.
As their advisor, you can see a client’s ledger at all times and help manage them through the process. If you see they’re constantly falling behind, you could offer additional bookkeeping support.
Meanwhile your tax workload will reduce as you find you spend far less time transcribing data between ledgers. Start thinking about how to transition your clients to online accounting and make every new financial year better than the last.