Real-time accounting with Receipt Bank

Jun 01, 2018
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Bookkeeping productivity tool provider Receipt Bank offers solutions which increase efficiency for accountants whilst delivering business improvements for their clients.

Chartered Accountant, Stacey Price, can remember the point when manually processing the paperwork coming in from clients became too much. “I remember thinking, if I have to reconcile one more bank account, I’ll lose my mind,” says the owner of Melbourne-based Healthy Business Finances.

The huge amount of manual processing involved in bookkeeping has long limited the scope of accountants to grow this service line efficiently, but this is starting to change with the advent of new technologies to automate these processes.

The scale of the problem faced by accountants and their clients is illustrated by research carried out by accounting software specialist Xero, which found that 51% of accountants say they spend most of their time manually processing transactions while 30% say most of it is spent chasing missing information.

“Chartered Accountants spend an awful lot of time going back and forth to their clients looking for information, seeking clarification on information they already have and so on,” says Damien Greathead, Vice President, Business Development with Receipt Bank. “Poor information flow is a big friction point in the relationship between Chartered Accountants and their clients. The question is how to connect accountants with their clients to get data flow in near real time.”

This is not just a problem for accountants. Clients have to contend with issues such as paperwork storage, lack of timely data on which to run their businesses, and, of course, being chased by their accountants for missing information.

It is little wonder then that the Xero research found that 94% of business owners want their accountants to use the latest technology. “Practices that fail to modernise could risk losing business,” the Xero report states. “But there are better, more positive reasons to embrace accounting technology. Most notably, it automates labour-intensive tasks that traditionally monopolised staff time, which will lift the ceiling on practice productivity (and profitability).”

These issues have resulted in quite dramatic growth in the use of bookkeeping productivity tools such as those available from Receipt Bank. Today, more than 5,000 accountancy practices around the world are using Receipt Bank’s solution to automate the collection and data extraction of receipts and invoices from their clients. Every month, Receipt Bank processes over 4.5 million invoices and receipts from more than 100,000 businesses globally who benefit from effortless bookkeeping and real-time accounting.

Damien Greathead explains this growth. “We make all those problems go away for Chartered Accountants and their clients. We give Chartered Accountants the tools to digitise the information flow from their clients and speed up the whole process. The software enables clients to upload their items to the cloud by taking a photo with our mobile app, emailing it in, or simply uploading receipts and invoices via their desktop PC. The technology unlocks the value of accounting data, automates the bookkeeping process and helps build more valuable relationships between Chartered Accountants and their clients.

“This leads to happier clients and makes their books more up-to-date,” Greathead adds. “Chartered Accountants are able to deliver month-end management reports much quicker and this makes the information more useful and actionable for the business owner, ultimately leading to much greater levels of satisfaction.”

One Receipt Bank customer who has experienced massive productivity gains is Murat Kurt who operates as a sole practitioner with his London-based firm, Accountancy Assist. In March of last year, he had 50 clients. He started using Receipt Bank the following month and now, just over a year later, he has almost tripled his client base – all without having to take on any staff.

“I mainly work with city professionals, but I’d like to expand my portfolio. I used to use Excel for bookkeeping, but I rarely do now because of Receipt Bank – and in doing so, save a huge amount of time. All invoices and receipts from my clients come through Receipt Bank, and it’s so easy to publish them through to Sage under the right nominal code. That’s why I’m still able to work alone. Recording invoices one by one manually in a spreadsheet or directly in an accounting software takes a lot of time – and time means money.”

His business has grown dramatically over the past year. “When I became a Receipt Bank partner in late April 2017, I had around 50 clients. A year later, I’m still working alone and I have around 140 clients – way more than I expected to be able to take on in a year. I couldn’t do it without Receipt Bank to be honest. I think now I could even manage 200 or 250 clients by myself.”

Stacey Price saved her sanity at the same time as paving the way to business success. “In addition to losing my sanity, I started to lose clients. Because my time and energy were consumed by data entry work, I couldn’t offer more than basic bookkeeping. That’s when I found Receipt Bank. I initially adopted it for my own sanity. Today, I’ve gotten to the point where roughly 80% of my time is one-on-one coaching – which is the work I love. The result of our hard work is that I now love my work and my business is snowballing.”

Up-to-date information for clients was the key issue for Jessica Rachow, director of Australian accountancy firm, Be Accounted. “The only way I can help my clients is if I have real-time data”, she says. “I need up-to-date financial statements and current bank balances. I need to know where a business is every day, every week, and every month of the year. I won’t have those insights if I spend all my time going through bank statements, processing data and manually calculating receipts. Receipt Bank solved that problem for me.”

Better quality management information for clients, significant cost savings and productivity gains, and greatly improved information flows are just some of the benefits offered by Receipt Bank’s award-winning technology.

“These benefits allow accountancy firms to spend a lot less time on ‘run of the mill’ bookkeeping chores and much more on high value advisory services for clients,” Greathead concludes.

“Automated bookkeeping services like Receipt Bank give firms the chance to focus on these value-adding services while staff get the opportunity to do more interesting work than basic number crunching and chasing clients for information.”

Visit www.receiptbank.com for more information or call +44 20 3699 5006 to speak to a member of the team.