Money Matters

How to spend less time on accounting and payroll

Discover how you can make your life much easier when it comes to dealing with the accounting and payroll for your business.

Some of the most compelling reasons to start a business include wanting to have more control and flexibility, the desire to use your skills and knowledge to make money, and having an idea that can solve a problem for a certain customer.

Maybe you picture working on your craft, guiding your own team, or striking a healthier work-life balance.

But there’s one aspect of running a business that’s easy to leave out of that vision—and that’s looking after the finances.

Let’s face it, not everyone is a numbers person.

The good news is you don’t have to become an accountant yourself to manage money effectively. You simply need quality software, and some knowledge of basic accounting and payroll concepts.

So, we’ve created an actionable guide that brings you up to speed on both.

It covers all the essential topics, helps you decide on software, and gives you 10 tips on how to get the best start.

In this article, we pull out some of the highlights:

About the guide

The guide, Where to start with small business accounting and payroll, will serve as your go-to for mastering the fundamentals of managing finances.

Whether you’re yet to start your business or it’s already established, the guide provides everything you need to know to keep your business on the right track, pay your people correctly, make insight-driven decisions, and save time with software.

To make this as simple as possible, we’ve split it into four levels.

This helps you get an idea of priority, and what you should be focusing on first. Each level covers not just what to do, but why you need to do certain things. Then we include actionable advice on what to do next.

Here’s a quick overview of each level.

Level 1: Keep clean records

The first level is all about bookkeeping.

This means accurately recording all the money that enters and leaves your business. We cover why this is vital from a legal perspective and the five most common tasks you’ll need to complete:

  1. Record all transactions
  2. Backup files and records
  3. Bank reconciliation
  4. Tax returns
  5. Invoicing.

Level 2: Perfect payroll

Making sure your people are paid accurately and on time is absolutely essential.

Here, we explore the true impact payroll can have on your business and define fundamental concepts like Pay As You Earn (PAYE) and deductions.

We also provide five tips on how to perfect the pay run:

  1. Start the pay run early
  2. Keep employee details up to date
  3. Make sure you always have enough cash
  4. Help your people understand payslips
  5. Use payroll software.

Level 3: Go further with reporting

Once you’re keeping clean records and paying your people properly, you can start to surface insights from your financial data.

In level three, we run through the key financial reports that give you a new level of understanding about your business.

This, in turn, helps you make more confident, informed decisions, and boosts your chances of keeping your business profitable.

Though there are dozens of types available, we break down the four most essential reports and reveal how they support your business:

Level 4: Power up with software

As a business owner, your time is extremely valuable. You should be spending as much of it as possible doing what you do best.

The final level is all about how to significantly cut down the hours you spend on accounting and payroll, which you can do with dedicated software.

To help you make an informed decision about potential new software, we break down the top benefits that today’s most advanced solutions provide.

These include:

  • Real-time insights
  • Efficient automation
  • Simpler compliance
  • Manageable digital records
  • Real-time clarity
  • Accounting and payroll sync
  • Simplified pay run
  • Payslip creation and reporting.

Final thoughts

This article has given you a taster of how to manage accounting and payroll as a small business owner. In the full guide, we dive into everything in much more detail and bring you 10 extra tips that’ll help you get off to the best start.

Apply the lessons in the guide and you’ll take control of the financial health of your business, meet compliance demands, and start making confident decisions.

You’ll also spend less time, energy and headspace on financial tasks, and more on focusing on what you care about most.