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How to Keep on Top of Your Bookkeeping

Your business decisions can only be as good as the information they’re based on, so it’s vital that your bookkeeping is accurate. In this article we’ll break down the daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual bookkeeping tasks that will ensure you always know what your positions is, and help to keep your small business finances on track.

Daily bookkeeping tasks

Check your bank accounts

It’s a good idea to check the balance available in your business bank account on a daily basis, and investigate if it’s wildly different from what you expected. This process also helps you stay on top of expenses going out, and when you can make payment to your suppliers.

Open mail and emails

Ensuring your mail and emails are opened and read every day will ensure no bills or queries are missed. This will help you avoid missed opportunities or late payments.

Record and file money received

Payments received from customers should be recorded and filed against the relevant invoice. Doing this the day you receive payment ensures you get an accurate picture of your cashflow, and prevents you chasing invoices that have already been paid.

Invoice your customers

It’s good practice to send invoices out the day a job is completed. You’ll be less likely to forget invoices, and your customers are more likely to pay on time if they receive the invoice right away.

Weekly bookkeeping tasks

Pay your suppliers

It’s important to protect your relationships with your suppliers, and that means paying them on time. Supplier invoices can be paid electronically on a weekly basis. Ensure you raise any queries with your suppliers as soon as possible.

Send invoice reminders

Not every customer will pay their invoice straight away so it is important to send out invoice payment reminders to ensure you get paid on time. It is important to receive an invoice by the date it is due to manage your cash flow effectively and efficiently.

Update petty cash

If your business makes any small purchases with cash, it’s important to regularly update your petty cash system. Withdraw cash as and when you need to top up, and record the transaction.

Deposit cash and cheques

Each week you should record all cash and cheque payments and deposit them into the bank. Doing this regularly controls the amount of cash you hold in your office, which can create a security risk.

Monthly bookkeeping tasks

Reconcile accounts

Bank accounts, credit cards and business savings should be viewed and reconciled regularly to ensure all payments have been sent to and landed in the correct accounts. Doing this regularly with help ensure smooth cash flow.

Prepare payroll

If you have employees, including yourself, on monthly pay, you will need to prepare payroll each month. It’s good practice to review your records to ensure any updates to employee details and salary have been carried out before running your monthly payroll.

Review inventory

If you hold stock items either for sale or use, a monthly review of your inventory will you avoid storage and spoilage issues, as well as ensuring you don’t run out or important items.

Update your tracking data

You need accurate information you can use to measure your business performance and inform your business decisions. Keep your spreadsheets or accounting software up to date, so it’s as easy as possible to get the data you need.

Quarterly bookkeeping tasks

Meet with your accountant

Depending on your business and your circumstances you might want to do this more often, and you might be in regular contact, but if not a quarterly meeting with your accountant is a good idea. This will give them the opportunity to go over your financial position in detail, share expert insights that could inform your business strategy and point out any opportunities that you may be missing.

Quarterly VAT payments

If you’re registered for VAT, it’s likely that your returns and payments are due on a quarterly basis, and it’s important to submit them on time.

Annual bookkeeping tasks

Submit your annual accounts

If you’re trading through a Limited company, you’ll need to submit your full annual accounts to Companies house. If you’re self-employed your accounts should be submitted to HMRC.

File your tax returns

Depending on your business and situation, you may need to file a personal tax return and/or a company tax return, and you may have tax to pay.

Prepare profit and loss reports

For your own benefit, you may wish to prepare profit, loss, and balance reports to fully understand your business’s financial situation. Use this information to rebalance, improve, and maintain your financial transactions in the new year.

If all of this looks like a lot of work, you might want to think about investing in professional bookkeeping services, which could free up your time to focus on other priorities.

If you have questions or if we can help in any way, please call our expert team on 01296 468483 or email

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