How accounting workflows grow profit

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Workflow automation is all about streamlining simple, manual, and repetitive tasks and processes which take up valuable time and resources that could be better invested in growth-generating projects.


According to a Wells Fargo/Gallup survey, five percent of business owner respondents work six or more days per week, with 62 percent clocking up a minimum of 50 hours in the office every week. It’s not easy leading a company; The Secrets of CEOs author Steve Tappin says to CNN that being a CEO should come with a health risk.


If you lead a business as a CEO or CFO, you’ll know that the hours themselves are only part of the problem. Even if you worked 24/7 without any detrimental impact on your health, there still wouldn’t be enough time to do everything you want to grow your business.


Delegating, outsourcing, and employing the 80/20 rule are all frequently suggested methods for carving out more time to work on your business’s big-picture projects. Another important method we’ll focus in this article is automated workflow.

Automated workflow automation: The simple solution to saving time

With the right software, businesses can take routine tasks like lead management, email marketing, and data entry and place them all autopilot to improve all-round efficiency.


Automated workflows empower growing businesses to reduce the time and money they’d normally spend on processes, such as sending and paying invoices, transactional customer communications, and, perhaps most important, cash flow management.

How automation software improves cash flow

As a business owner, you likely know all too well that if there’s a risk to your progress, it’s probably cash flow, a factor that, if not managed carefully, can either drain your existing resources or potentially limit your opportunities for growth.


This is where workflow automation can come to the rescue, removing blockages that get in the way of your long-term success and releasing valuable resources that can be reinvested into revenue-generating work. Here are just a few of the ways that automation can make a major difference to your cash flow management:

Cut costs and eliminate fees

Taking a manual approach to your accounts payable is a time-consuming process, often creating problems that turn into frustrating time sucks. These problems can often lead to late payment fees or, at the very least, mean that your business misses out on any early-payment discounts offered by your suppliers.


Using the Automated Workflows features can eliminate this problem altogether, ensuring your payments go out on time every time so that you never have to pay a late fee again. And, with batch invoicing, you can save your team members’ time, freeing them up to work on high-level tasks.

Stop invoices from slipping through the cracks

Speaking of income, automated workflows can be used to ensure that customer invoices are sent out in a timely fashion, and that your team stays on top of every payment and status during busy periods.


Bill reminders can be used to automatically alert your team when they need to invoice your customers, as well as when those invoices are past due. Along with automated invoicing, bill reminders helps to ensure your business receives the payments you’re owed. and prevents past due invoices from being overlooked.


Eradicate errors


Accounting data entry errors are the kind of avoidable mistakes that cost your business in terms of time and money.


Duplicate payments, missed invoices, and incorrect billing statements can all have a knock-on effect on your cash flow, either because you end up paying out more money than necessary or because an inaccurate invoice means you don’t get paid enough.

Automation solves this problem by accurately capturing data from print and digital sources, and cross-checking to avoid duplications and other errors.

Improve cash flow forecasting with real-time data

Automated workflows enables your team to keep accurate records of your entire accounting and payment processes and presents key data in a digestible, easy-to-follow format.


This allows you to monitor your company’s cash flow in real-time and create accurate, comprehensive financial reporting that helps you prepare for short-term projects as well as long-term growth.

Stay on top of what matters most

Real-time data access proves that just because you automate your workflows, that doesn’t make them a case of “out of sight, out of mind.” You can check in at any time to see exactly what’s going on with your business and take action where necessary. For more important communications such as invoices, you can also automatically generate them but make sure they don’t go out without your approval.


And, if the multitude of day-to-day decisions demanding your attention means you’re likely to forget to check in, you can simply make sure that Advanced reminds you. With automated workflows, you can generate automatic reminders to do everything from simply glancing over the books to chasing up outstanding invoices and making bank deposits.

At last, the time you need to create real growth

Whether you use workflow automation simply for those helpful automated reminders, or as a method of completely streamlining your invoice processing, the process can make a huge difference to your company’s overall efficiency.


With routine tasks running automatically, your operational to-do list gets shorter. As such, the time you and your team spend in the office can be invested properly, not on those essential-yet-mundane tasks, but on the kind of work that really matters. Work that delivers genuine added value for your customers and produces tangible growth for you.




This article originally appeared on the Quickbooks Resource Center and was syndicated by


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5 tips for organic business growth


It’s no secret that startups have a prodigious failure rate. In fact, according to a recent study, the four-year survival rate for a startup is just 49%.

With demoralizing stats like this in mind, entrepreneurs may be tempted to grow their profits through any means necessary, including inorganic strategies like acquisitions or mergers. However, the truth is that business owners can achieve impressive growth through organic strategies as well, allowing them to retain control of the companies they built from the ground up.


Also known as “true growth,” organic growth refers to the process of growing a business by reducing costs and increasing sales, either by finding more customers or enhancing output to current clients. On the other hand, inorganic growth occurs when a company merges with or is acquired by a second business. Entrepreneurs should take the time to familiarize themselves with the advantages of organic and inorganic growth, as well as some of the top strategies for execution, so they can decide which is the best choice for their business.

As a new business owner, you’ll likely want to increase profits as quickly as possible. By employing inorganic strategies like mergers and acquisitions, startups can grow their businesses more quickly while taking advantage of resources such as stronger credit lines and expanded market resources. Additionally, joining with another company lets you take advantage of its expertise and experience in the industry to develop your own brand.


By merging with another business, you agree to hand over some of your control and equity to another company. Not only can your initial vision become diluted, but you may also be forced to take on new business and managerial challenges before you’re truly ready. In some cases, you may have to rush to grow your staff and production capabilities to keep up with demand.

On the other hand, organic growth techniques allow you to grow your business on your own timeline. Because you aren’t sharing control with another company, you can hire employees and expand sales at your own pace. Additionally, entrepreneurs who maintain their autonomy now can sell for a larger profit later when the company is fully developed.

While retaining control of your company offers many advantages over the long haul, it can make business growth challenging in the short term. Some entrepreneurs struggle to grow beyond their current marketplace, while others find themselves cut down by the competition. Additionally, new businesses must often fight to make ends meet from month to month. Fortunately, strategies exist to help startups grow their profits without handing over control to partners or investors.

Here are just a few of those strategies to help you grow your business organically:


Want to grow a business that will feed your family and employees for years to come? The first step on the road to entrepreneurial success is starting the right kind of company.

With home-based and e-commerce businesses, you can avoid expenses like rent and commuting during the early, lean years of your company. As an added bonus, working out of the home lets you write off parts of your mortgage and electric bill. You can then invest these savings back into the business to help you grow in the long term.


A common conundrum for new business owners is whether to take your full cut of the profits or invest the money back into your company. While you may be tempted to keep some of those hard-earned dollars for yourself, you should aim to reinvest gross profits whenever possible to help your business grow. Investing your own money shows prospective clients and lenders that you are confident in your company’s long-term potential.

Not sure where to put profits? When in doubt, invest in marketing, SEO and other tactics likely to generate more business for your startup. If your income permits it, you may also want to invest in employee training and technological improvements, as these can yield large profits down the line for your company.


No matter how happy your current clients are with your offerings, you will have trouble growing your business organically if you don’t put effort into finding new sales channels. If you don’t currently sell your goods online, you should definitely consider starting a website to expand your reach to other regions. Additionally, you can introduce new products, cross-market services to your existing clients and expand to different markets. For example, a company that specializes in SEO may want to expand its services to include social media and search engine marketing.

Finally, business owners should employ market segmentation to customize their strategies according to the specific channels they are leveraging and the specific markets they are trying to reach. This way, you can create unique campaigns based on customer location and demographics and watch your sales rates skyrocket.


As a new business owner, you may feel the urge to micromanage everything that happens at your company. However, the truth is that macro-management is a far more effective way of enabling organic growth for your startup.

To keep your company moving forward, you should train top employees to take over some of your daily responsibilities. While you may be tempted to keep costs down by hiring employees who will work for less, in the long run these staff members could end up costing you more if their efforts aren’t up to par. Find people you can trust to get the job done—even when you’re not around—so you can focus on growing and developing your business in the years to come.


From minimizing spending, to reinvesting profits back into the business, organic growth strategies help ensure that you will retain control of the company you worked so hard to build. Do your research, and consider all the growth strategies available in order to give your business the best shot at success.

Do you know how sales taxes are impacting your bottom line? Check out our sales tax calculator.

This article originally appeared in the QuickBooks Resource Center and was syndicated by


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