Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Bookkeeping Mistakes To Look Out For

Being a volunteer treasurer for a community organisation can be a stressful post for some. The responsibility of the organisation's continued operations and growth depend on the financial side being steady and well accounted for. While it is an important job to get right, there is no need to lose sleep over it. Many possible mistakes are easy to avoid by looking out for problems that have plagued others in the past. Keeping this useful list of “do's and don'ts” in mind can help you avoid common problems with your bookkeeping. 

Don't let your records get behind.

The best way to maintain accuracy in bookkeeping is to keep it up to date. Even when expenses seem straightforward, letting things slide for a week or two can create a lot of extra work when trying to verify expenditure and earnings.

Don't throw away receipts

It is important to keep receipts for a few reasons. Of course, they are useful to maintain accuracy in the bookkeeping, and they can also speed up answering any queries about the bookkeeping that might arise.

Don't connect personal and organisational accounts

Sometimes, particularly when a group is just starting out, the desire to keep things 'simple' at the bank will entice someone to use an account connected to a personal one. It is simpler only for a very short time, and we strongly encourage that accounts begin and remain separate.

Do reconcile bank accounts

Allocate time regularly, perhaps weekly, to make sure your records and the bank's records match up. That way, any discrepancies can be caught early, and figured out before other problems result.

Do share responsibility with other members

For everyone's benefit, making sure the financial matters of an organisation are overseen by more than one person is critcal. Let at least two people bear witness to records and account activities, so there is never any shadow of suspicion, or outright loss of money within your organisation.

Do use up to date accounting software

A system like Admin Bandit can make keeping accurate books simpler and more time efficient. It is a small investment to make for big returns, and can make the treasurer's job a lot easier,  perfect for volunteer treasurers, who do not always have an accounting background.

When bookkeeping procedures are followed routinely, with appropriate technologies and safeguards in place to prevent errors, theft or accidental loss, mistakes become minimal, often non-existent. Then, a volunteer treasurer's role becomes simpler and much more enjoyable.