You decide to become a stronger business owner and dive into your financials. You pull up Quickbooks Online and….this may take some time.
Maybe you have 100+ transactions to review, bank accounts that have been disconnected for far too long, heck - maybe you don’t have Quickbooks Online and you are still using Excel.
First, know that you’re not alone! Being a business owner is tough and we all get busy, so it is understandable if this falls behind from time to time.
Second, you need a clean-up!
A clean-up for your books makes sure everything is as up-to-date as possible.
Typically these happen when business owners need financial statements but it is good practice to simply keep your books updated.
If you aren’t sure whether you need a clean-up, here are some signs:
1. You’re Still Using Excel
There is a time and place for excel…in fact, bookkeepers use it a lot!
But if you own a business and are using it to keep track of all your income and expenses you need to know -> there are so many better options!
Yes, you need a clean-up but you also need to set up your entire QuickBooks Online file, which a bookkeeper can help you with!
Depending on how long you have been in business and how complex your current setup is, it can be a relatively easy process.
2. You Have Too Many (or not enough) Tailored Accounts
One of the biggest mistakes made in Quickbooks Online is not knowing when to add another account to your chart of accounts (also called an expense account on your financials).
Sometimes it is needed but other times Quickbooks Online already has features to help clarify the information you are trying to show in your reports.
For example, don’t add another account for every new project or client. Instead, work with a bookkeeper to use job costing with classes. This will give you the same results without crowding your financial statements with too much information.
3. You Don’t Find Your Financial Reports Useful
It is important to note if you don’t find your financial reports useful you only *may* need a clean-up.
Financial reports are intended to help you make decisions! If you, the business owner, cannot follow the information, it seems incorrect, or you do not get any value from it, a bookkeeper likely needs to step in! That may look like education but it may also look like:
Making the accounts in your financial reports more tailored to your business
Reviewing transactions that have been sent to the wrong category
Reviewing reconciliations for any missed transactions
One of these may be the reason you are not getting any value from your financial reports.
4. The Information Just Seems Wrong
No one knows your business better than you do.
If you are looking at your financial statements and the information does not seem right or clear, you may need a clean-up.
For example, does the rent seem inflated? Are you really spending that much on materials? Why does it seem like some of your income is missing?
You know your business and your reports should help you get to know your activities even better.
5. Filing Your Taxes is a Nightmare
Financial reports are used to complete your annual tax return and the information needs to be clear!
For example, if you have personal expenses showing up in your financial statements your preparer will need to separate these expenses to avoid some hefty penalties.