If you are a small business owner, and something needs to be done, you may suddenly find yourself a master of DIY (doing it yourself). There are times when DIY makes sense, but there are other times when DIY means DIW (doing it wrong). DIW can lead to costly mistakes and penalties and, in some cases, financial disaster.
Here are some suggestions about when to do it yourself and when to get help.
- Simple accounting. Keep track of your transactions using one of the many small business accounting programs on the market.
- Approving invoices. As a business owner, you should review invoices and approve payments. You should also keep track of any new vendors.
- Depositing checks. You can make deposits from your desk using one of the many scan-and-deposit solutions offered by most banks.
- Setting financial goals. You need to be the one setting the agenda and determining high-level financial goals for your business. Get your team members involved in deciding how to accomplish those goals.
Paying taxes. Make sure you stay on top of all tax payments due. Outsourcing the responsibility for tax filing and payroll processing may be a good option, but keep in mind that the ultimate responsibility for paying taxes rests with you.
- Setting expense policies. As the owner, you need to determine expense reporting and reimbursement policies for your business.
Don’t DIY (Get Help)
- Preparing financial statements. Creating financial statements in the proper form can require special knowledge. If your financial statements will be shared with your banker or other external party, seek the help of an accountant.
- Writing checks. Don’t waste time writing, signing, and mailing checks. Automate payments using online banking or a cloud payment solution.
- Collecting from customers. There is a better way to stay on top of customer payments than spending time making phone calls to past-due customers. Try an automated solution.
- Creating budgets. Get members of your team involved in determining budgets for their areas and driving results from the ground up.
- Processing payroll. Let someone else handle this time-consuming and high-risk chore. However, make sure you are dealing with a reliable firm and that your funds are getting to the proper tax authorities on time.
- Reimbursing expenses. Use technology to take the pain out of expense reporting and reimbursement for your employees. There are applications and software that can simplify the process.
- Managing sales taxes. Don’t even think of keeping track of these taxes by hand. Use an automated sales tax solution.
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