04/01/2020

Simplification via Automation

Like individuals, there is no reason as to why businesses don’t have New Year resolutions. This is a great opportunity for business owners to introduce targets and milestones for their business, or aim to change the way they do things.

Speaking to business owners, we are hearing that many of them want to spend more time in 2020 building their business and increasing sales, but don’t know how to go about it as they are already spending all their time running their business.

Finding more time in a day is difficult, we all suffer the tree through the forest syndrome where we can not see how we could possibly do more in our day. The key to this is to split the tasks we do daily into value added, which drive increased business, and those which we should look to simplify via automation.

Automation is the process of introducing technology to help simplify the process and reduce the manual nature of the task. There is a whole marketplace of applications which work in simplifying tasks, and more importantly integrate with the top accounting applications.

Having spent extensive time with small to medium businesses who are time poor, we have found that management of jobs when having employees / contractors, and management of supplier invoices, are the most time-consuming manual tasks in any business owners’ daily tasks. These tasks consume valuable business owners time and in some cases are seen as “must be done” and not value-added. By identifying technology to help business owners with these tasks, it frees up their time to allow it to be invested in their business.

Job management applications allow for business owners to organise their work tasks and what needs to be done for each one. These jobs are raised for each client and outline what work needs to be done by whom. The more advanced job management applications then allow for location management of tasks, completion of jobs via capturing of photos and then followed by providing clients the ability to pay real time via payment services like Stripe or PayPal.

Due to the manual nature of keying of data, supplier invoices are generally not entered into accounting applications and the expense simply allocated when the payment has been made. Automation of supplier invoices has come a long way in the past couple of years with invoices now digitised and information extracted including supplier information and values so that they can be easily integrated into leading accounting applications. Copies of the invoices are also maintained in the accounting application for future reference removing the need for paper to be kept. Invoices can be sent to these applications through forwarding of emailed invoices or capturing a photo of the invoice through smart phone applications.

These two automation technologies, as examples, have been found not to only simplify manual tasks and give back business owners valuable time, but also reduce the amount of paperwork maintained by businesses reducing costs and footprint required in offices.

There are endless tools and applications that can assist in the simplification of tasks and each business should be looked at individually to see what solutions suit their needs, with broad experience across multiple industries we can help review and identify applications which will simplify and automate tasks and most importantly give business owners back valuable time to work on their business and grow.

 

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Posted in: Bookkeeping