Get a Real-Time Accounting Update for Your Business in 5 Minutes
So many numbers to track. It’s all a blur sometimes. Here’s a simple way to absorb your key financials quickly.
The CEO calls and say he has a meeting in 10 minutes where he has to present a snapshot of how the company is doing financially. Or you’re the CEO, and you want to start your day with the knowledge that there are no major money issues.
If you’re managing your accounting using paper and Excel, you’re in a tight spot. Which folders do you grab? Can you quickly transfer some numbers into a spreadsheet whose content will do the trick? Do you have a report that’s current and comprehensive enough to tell the story as of right now?
The truth is, unless you’re using a cloud-based accounting application, you’re going to be hard-pressed to please the boss, or to quickly gauge whether there are financial fires that need your immediate attention.
Counting the Ways
Accounting websites have numerous tools that can provide you with instant information and insights. One is what’s called a dashboard, a one-page summary of the most critical company data. Just like you’d quickly scan your vehicle’s dashboard to see things like your current speed and your fuel level, and to check for any warning lights, you can get a real-time update on your financial status via lists and charts that tell you, for example:
- What your account balances are,
- The total cash in and out of the company for the last several months,
- Who owes you money and which invoices are overdue, and,
- Where your bills stand. Is anything due? Past due?
If you’re the one manning the money controls, you can click on links within this information and either get more details, fire off a collections email, or make a quick payment.
Need to look up a customer or supplier, find a specific transaction quickly, or see details that will tell you why your expense claims have suddenly soared? Cloud-based accounting applications store all of that information in records and lists. Their user interfaces are built so that you can zero in on the most obscure details by doing a very specific search or by just browsing through tables of, for example, inventory or check or purchase data.
How did businesses compile financial reports before computers? There was no method that could come close to the speed, search capabilities, and comprehensiveness of a state-of-the-art accounting website. These applications come equipped with dozens of report templates. You simply choose one and customize it if necessary, and the site will pour your own company’s data into it in neat rows and columns. Need to know which items are selling the best? How well you’re adhering to your budget? How much money is tied up in unpaid invoices? You can find out in seconds.
Five minutes of research only scratches the surface of what these web-based solutions can do. But quick updates like these reveal what depth and insight lie within your company’s online accounting screens.