Hong Kong is home to around 340 000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs), constituting more than 98% of the business establishments in the region. These SMEs nestle in its busy business areas on Hong Kong Island such as Central and and Wan Chai, or on the Kowloon side and even out to the New Territories and Outlying Islands. You get the picture….Small businesses are everywhere in Hong Kong, and every business needs an automated bookkeeping workflow to stay on top of their accounts.

While SMEs pretty much make up the majority of Hong Kong’s business ecosystem, it’s no secret that almost all small business owners handle a heavy workload to maintain the operations of their businesses. 

When you’re running a small business, there are a million things to do and not enough hours in the day. With less than a hundred or 50 employees, small business owners might often find themselves falling short in their bookkeeping functions.

If you’re like most small business owners, you probably have a few different responsibilities on your plate: marketing, sales, customer support and more. And then there’s accounting which is often seen as an afterthought for small business owners who may not necessarily understand fully what it means to automate their workflow.

You might already have some sort of system in place for handling your books whether it’s spreadsheets or an online accounting program like Xero. The problem is that many people don’t have the time to manually enter data into their systems every day. Even if they do, it’s nearly impossible to remember everything that happened over the course of the month which means there are often mistakes and errors when it comes time to file taxes.

If you’re looking for ways to save time and improve efficiency, automating your bookkeeping workflow can be an effective way to do both.

Here are five words of advice for how to automate your bookkeeping workflow:

1 – Take A Look at Your Schedule

The first step is to take a look at your schedule and see if there are any gaps or times when you could use some help. Maybe there’s a day or two each week when you’re short on time or have other commitments that keep you from getting everything done. Or maybe there are days where the workload is lighter and it would be easier to handle everything yourself.

Look for these opportunities, then think about how you can automate them so they become more efficient and less time-consuming.

2 – Decide which tasks can be eliminated

Writing customized emails for each inquiry from a client may be your thing. Alternatively, you might like doing data entry, even though it isn’t the greatest use of your time. It’s now time to decide what you can let go after analyzing your schedule.

It might be difficult to let go of old routine behaviors or tasks you enjoy. In this phase, it is critical to make a detailed list of ways to improve, as well as to be as ruthless as possible when eliminating items. The following things can be considered:

  • Is this task essential to the running of my business?
  • Can this task be delegated to someone else?
  • Can this task be automated?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, then it’s time to let go of the task. This may mean hiring someone to handle it for you or investing in bookkeeping software that can automate the process. Whatever the solution, getting rid of non-essential tasks will free up your time to focus on more important things.

3 – Use Technology To Your Advantage

You will have to use technology to your advantage in automating your bookkeeping workflow. There are a number of software programs that can help you automate various tasks. By taking advantage of these tools, you will be able to streamline your bookkeeping process and save time in the long run.

For example, Xero is good at automating the bookkeeping workflow. It’s easy to set up recurring invoices, allowing you to automate your billing. Xero can also automate your payroll, meaning that all you need to do is input your latest employee data and it will do the rest. The software also has a handy inbuilt payment wizard which allows you to send invoices directly from the dashboard.

Xero’s automation software also allows users to set up automated payments. This means that when a customer pays an invoice, their account will automatically be credited and they’ll be notified of this via email or SMS. This is particularly useful if you’re doing business internationally – it means that even if you don’t have the time or resources to chase up payments yourself, your customers will be contacted on time and paid without further input from you!

4 – Don’t get overwhelmed by tools

Shifting your bookkeeping to automated ones might be a little challenging especially for those who are not technologically savvy. You might want to try out tools for your bookkeeping automation and just choose what works the best for you. It might be a little too overwhelming at times but you can eventually know your way around the platforms and tools that you have chosen—you just have to be patient in exploring. 

If you think it’s too much for you and it’s causing more hassle than perks, you can always consider outsourcing the functions that you find difficult for you or your team. 

5 – Be understanding and flexible 

Finally, it’s important to be understanding and flexible when automating your bookkeeping workflow. Things will not always go according to plan and there may be a learning curve associated with new automation tools. However, by being understanding and flexible, you will be able to make the necessary adjustments and ensure that your bookkeeping process is as efficient as possible.

By following these tips, you will be well on your way to automating your bookkeeping workflow. By doing so, you will be able to save time and energy, while ensuring that your books are always in order. Give it a try today! You won’t regret it!

Hong Kong Bookkeeping Automation

If you need to know more, you may contact me at vinod@pinetree.hk, call us on +852 3529 2328 or visit our website www.pinetree.hk to find out more about the services we provide through our Hong Kong accounting company called Pinetree, or our HK Secretarial Services company called Sun Secretarial Services.


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