When you’re just starting out, all the needs seem immediate: initial investment, branding, marketing, sales leads, brick and mortar or digital premises. But the most important thing that small business owners often forget is the one thing they absolutely shouldn’t: the books.
From automated tools and basic bookkeeping to full-on strategic advice, it’s hard to know what you need when you’re building from the ground up. We totally get it, which is why we asked the tough questions and got the right answers direct from our expert Acuity team. Dive below for the essentials you need when you’re looking at your books and wondering: Is this how my finances should look?
1. Why does my business need a bookkeeper?
It can be easy to get behind on your financials when you’re running your own business. From remembering your expenses to recording your deposits, small business owners often need an extra hand to keep the accounts in order. With a bookkeeper, problems in finance reporting can be immediately red flagged, which will give you the security you need for peace of mind.
2. How will I know I need a bookkeeper?
If you’re growing, that’s the first indication. But there are other ways to know you need a bookkeeper: if your records are managed poorly, you don’t know your current cash flow, or you’ve got books that haven’t been reconciled in months. But ultimately, if you feel like you’re running out of time trying to do it all — that’s how you know.
“We are a member of your team – we may not be sitting down the hall, but we are available to provide reports when needed and answer questions.” – Tricia Briggs, Acuity Accountant
3. What are the risks of not having a bookkeeper? What’s the worst that can happen?
There are many risks of not having a bookkeeper, including overdrawn accounts, missed payment, penalties owed to banks, taxes, etc. You could also find yourself in a position where you can’t pay your employees or your income taxes. These are the kinds of problems that keep great small businesses from growing, and they can hurt in the short and long term.
4. How should I approach bookkeeping if I didn’t start my company with a bookkeeping or accounting team?
To get started, automation software like Quickbooks or Intuit can be a useful tool for organizing what you already have. But if you’re ready to bring on a bookkeeper, you just need all of your necessary financial records. At Acuity we work with automation bookkeeping tools, so we’ll be able to pick up your financials where the tech drops off.
“Acuity offers expert bookkeepers who aren’t just looking at the numbers but also reviewing your monthly and annual trends as well as ensuring you are in line with best practices.” – Fara Habib, Acuity Accountant
5. How would Acuity ensure my success with taxes and bookkeeping? What can I do to help you?
Communication is the most important thing a business owner can do for ensuring that their taxes are accurate and their books are up to date. For the Acuity team, that means answering our email questions and providing the proper documentation. As long as you keep the lines of communication open for questions, concerns, or requests, we can get your books reconciled correctly the first time.
6. How is Acuity different from traditional software?
We’re not just looking at your statements, we’re looking ahead. And that’s exactly the kind of mindset that’s going to prepare you financially for growth. We’ll streamline and automate your processes as needed, and then we’ll step in with expert advice to make sure that you’re making the best decisions for your business. As you move forward, we can grow with you, with dedicated accountants and CFO services as little or as often as you need them.
Think a bookkeeper is right for you? Check out all of the features that will help you get started with smart financials here. Looking for more insight? Our controller and CFO services are available as needed — a huge bonus for small businesses that just need a little boost as they head in the right direction.