Automated Bank Reconciliation: An Instant Analysis for Your Business
- Jon Heath
How healthy is your business? It is important to perform timely cash flow measurements to assess your business’s health. The appropriate use of current technology allows automation of the bank reconciliation process, which gives real-time read-outs of fiscal status.
Cash flows are the core of a business; therefore, a clear view of income and outflow is critical. Can you afford to hire that employee, invest in that equipment, or sign that service contract? Accurate cash flow data—provided by your bank reconciliations—enhances analysis of these common questions.
Reconciling bank statements can demand an inordinate number of hours. But the usefulness of those statements for making business decisions is driven by the complete, accurate, and timely recording of the organization’s transactions.
Business owners have much to consider—marketing, sales, payroll, suppliers, and more. Too often, accounting is the last place that draws focus. If bank reconciliation takes valuable time away from running the business or leads to more confusion despite the hours invested, the natural response is to delay or avoid the task. But the lack of or delay in cash insights has the potential to be a significant problem.
The good news is that current technology provides an effective solution that benefits businesses and their owners. Many of today’s high-tech accounting packages sync with financial institutions’ feeds for seamless data integration. When a transaction comes through, the system automatically posts it to the proper account (e.g., utilities, vendors, office supplies) and updates the reporting.
In simplifying the process, automation frees up time for the business owner (or whoever handles bookkeeping). More importantly, it enables up-to-date cash flow reporting. Users can see reliably accurate figures without manually recording each check, credit, and debit card transaction—or visiting the bank.
Automated reconciliation makes it simple to see the money coming in and evaluate its progress. It only takes seconds to capture a real-time snapshot of daily, weekly, or monthly income and expenditures so you can analyze cash flow patterns and evolving trends. For example, do you spend too much in one area and need more in others? When reconciliations are no big deal, you’re less likely to get bogged down in the bookkeeping and can focus on the big picture.
There are other important benefits too. Automated reconciliation helps you flag unscheduled transactions, as well as those that don’t match the usual pattern. As a result, you can better catch unexpected, accidental, or suspicious entries to spot issues like internal fraud or bank errors more quickly.
Hitting your business growth targets requires leveraging financial resources for maximum advantage and making tough decisions. Automating the bank reconciliation process is key to creating a more accurate and up-to-date fiscal check-up, so you’re best equipped to choose wisely. Contact your CRI advisor to learn more about automated reconciliation and how it can help you manage your business’s cash flow effectively.
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