Cloud Accounting – give your accounts a Digital Detox

Cloud Accounting – give your accounts a Digital Detox

The pace of change we’re seeing in the world of bookkeeping and accounting is staggering and this blog is all about how your business can make the most of the cloud accounting digital revolution.

Say goodbye to the old ways and give your business a Digital Detox!

In this blog I’ve referenced several apps that work for us and our clients – but shop around, there will be something new by the time you read this!


Digital detox – why and how?

The main benefits are:

  • cost savings from making bookkeeping more efficient
  • going paper-free without losing documents
  • getting paid more quickly
  • collaboration within your business and with your accountant
  • improved productivity and profit

The main building blocks are:

  • adopting a cloud accounting solution (we recommend QuickBooks Online, QBO)
  • utilising the impressive app ecosystem growing up around cloud accounting
  • being prepared to change some of the habits of a lifetime


Sales and getting paid

Raise your sales invoices within your cloud accounting system and email them straight to your clients. If you have recurring invoices to the same client for the same amount then you can set up your invoices to recur each month and go straight out, on time, without you needing to do anything.

If your sales invoices are already produced in another system then import them into your accounting software using an app such as Transaction Pro. There’s no need to enter data twice and certainly no need to have paper copies!

And once you have raised your sales invoices get them paid by direct debit. We’re using GoCardless which integrates with QBO.


Suppliers’ invoices and receipts

Use an app! We’re using Auto Entry but also check out Receipt Bank. These services read suppliers’ invoices and receipts, learn what the accounting entries should be and post them to your cloud accounting software.

You can send the invoices to these services by email, upload them from your computer or take a photo on your phone and send it from the phone app – ideal for the coffee receipt!

This is the most impressive area of automation we’ve seen and it saves hours of work. But more than that, when the transaction is sent to your accounting package a PDF of the invoice or receipt is sent as well so you don’t need to keep the piece of paper.

Useful per se. More than useful if you have a VAT enquiry!


Bank accounts, PayPal and Credit Cards

Link them all to your accounting software and download new transactions whenever you wish.

It can be overwhelming when the first download of bank transactions appear and it’s important to learn the best way of dealing with them. But once you get used to it the accounting for receipts and payments is really simple and you can keep your bookkeeping records reconciled to your bank and credit card accounts all the time.


Improve productivity, improve profit

Getting the computers to do the work saves time and money. People (the largest overhead for most businesses) are more productive and accounting work is less dull, less prone to error.

We access cloud accounting services from anywhere so more people can access the bits they need for their job and can work from home as easily as in the office.

Much of our work with clients is now done using screen-sharing in Skype. A short review with a client whenever we need it keeps things ticking over correctly without needing to meet.

Time saved, problems solved.

And do you really need any paper any more? We’ve been paper free for several years thanks to working in the cloud. Documents and files are available to everyone, we can all work at clients or at home and we need less office space.

What’s not to like?  Efficient workflow saves you time and money.


Can we help you with your Digital detox?

We’re helping businesses benefit from the digital world all the time. Can we can help you? Please give me a call on 020 7125 0270.






A business is either registered for VAT or it’s not.

If it’s VAT registered then it needs to add VAT to its sales invoices (with one or two exceptions) but it can reclaim the cost of VAT it pays to its suppliers. This is done on a VAT return.

A useful summary of VAT is this – Tax Donut VAT overview.

Good bookkeeping is the key to keeping on top of VAT but also it’s a good idea to keep a separate bank account for tax savings so you know the money is in the bank to pay the VAT (and corporation tax) when the time comes.

Download our free Bookkeeping EBook here.

HMRC has several VAT schemes to help ease the burden of VAT on smaller businesses and both the Flat Rate scheme and cash accounting for VAT are worth looking in to.

To learn more about how we help businesses with VAT and Making Tax Digital, visit our VAT Services page.

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Jack and Jill have run their company for fifteen years and by and large they have been successful. It’s a tech business with some large, international clients and some smaller ones closer to home.

However, over the last two years they have seen:

  • outsourcing of work to India
  • pressure on prices from all clients and prospects
  • greater demands from clients

All of which have eroded margins and reduced sales.

And taken away much of the enjoyment of running the company.

In the last year they have closed their office, said goodbye to their staff (amicably) and retrenched to just the two of them working from home. But even then they’ve decided that the work they are doing is neither profitable enough nor enjoyable so they’ve put their business on PAUSE!

They’re not seeking new clients and when the contracts currently underway have come to an end their business will stop.

For a while.

Unburdened by work they don’t really want to do at prices they can’t make a living from, Jack and Jill can regroup, think again and they will come back at some stage with some different business ideas that they can both enjoy and make a decent return on.

In the meantime, their quality of life has improved, the business is not all-consuming and they’re in a better frame of mind to figure out what the future holds and how to embrace it.

Good for them!





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Effective – do the right things

Efficient – do things right

It’s your business so make sure you’re doing all the right things your business needs to do to be successful, profitable, sustainable.

But doing the right things in the right way is where systems come in.

Being organised, using the right technology, making sure everyone knows how to do their job properly and knows what’s expected of them – your business should purr like a well-oiled machine.

And the systems / process that are put in place should be scalable, easily coping with more and more transactions so you can grow without falling over.

We’re keen to help businesses make the best use of technology to improve the quality and lower the cost of accounting. We’re paper-free and totally in the cloud ourselves and we can help you to get there as well – giving you easy to manage bookkeeping and management information.

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