All things cloud

Shortest month of the year, don’t lose any time…

A lot of our clients are family run businesses working every hour possible in order to make a success. The current climate and the B word are making people anxious. People are finding making decisions even harder with the fear of the unknown, which is fully understandable.

One question that I do know the answer to is would you like more time to focus on your business? Yes. Tools with cloud accounting software and other ‘apps’ can truly save time for you in both personal and business life. Here are a few that you could adopt in 2019 (there are loads out there on the market, below are just a few to get us started).

Within most cloud accounting packages, the bank feed feature alone will save you time! This pulls through your statement electronically… typing required. Rules can be applied so regular transactions can be automated and it will automatically match transactions to sales and purchase invoices. Not only does that help with your bank reconciliation but how often are their mistakes when manually entering data? Nobody is perfect, despite our very best intentions.

Cloud has other time saving techniques such as recurring invoices for regular purchases and customers. You can create a list of products and services to enable consistency and speed when generating sales invoices. You can also use the software on your phone so you can actually invoice as and when you need to, meaning that debtors days can be reduced as you can invoice on the day rather than at the end of the week or month. It will populate your VAT return at the point of entry, so that when the VAT return is due it becomes a dream rather than dread! You can access it from anywhere, so you don’t have to always be office bound to run your business.

There are tools out there (and new ones currently being developed within the cloud accounting software) that can extract data for you from paper copies. It means that no longer are you required to type in purchase invoices, bank statements and copies of sales invoice (for example if you prepare these outside your accounting system). It will extract the net, vat and gross values as well as the description and supplier/customer etc. A lot of the software can integrate with cloud accounting so they will arrive straight into you accounts. Tools like Receipt Bank and AutoEntry are available. If you want a demo of these, please do let us know and we’d be happy to show you.

Remembering to record your mileage for business can be hard. If you miss some mileage it could mean more tax to pay if you are self-employed. There is an app called MileIQ that records mileage automatically as it runs in the background of your smartphone. You swipe right for business, and left for personal. If you swipe and hold you can categorise e.g. between offices, to clients etc. So you can deal with your mileage claims through the app and send them into your accounting system straight away. There are other expenses tools out there that can also deal with your mileage, but these require you to press the ’start’ button at the beginning therefore I prefer MileIQ as it records in the background so you’ll never miss a claimable trip!

I am a sucker for a list, losing the list and re writing it again! Software is out there that will allow you to have the same list on multiple devices e.g. on your computer at work and your phone so if an idea springs to mind whilst you’re at home or out and about, you can add it no matter where you are so you’ll never forget anything again, unless you forget to write it down of course! One of the tools I use for this is Wunderlist, which is a tool that allows you to create lists, share them with anyone whether colleagues, friends or family. Attachments and future details can be added to the list too, and best of all, it’s free to use!

Anyway, I’ll stop there, but I hope this provides some insight into what’s out there to help you in everyday life, whether business or personal. As ever if anyone has any questions or topics they would like me to discuss in my upcoming blogs then please email me at

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<Aug 2019>

Aug 18

No events today
I just wanted to say thank you for the meeting yesterday. I have been in the practice for 20 years now and I have to say that your time with us has definitely been the best support we have been given, both in terms of actual "numbers" but also in personal service, support, explanation and confidence. I have seen a real increase in my partners understanding of their accounts and a reduction in their anxiety etc since you have been our accountants. Just wanted to thank you for this.
-- Dr Andrew Dearden