Member Since: 26th Sep 2017
28th Nov 2019
Whether you go for QB, Sage or Xero - ultimately -is down to what you are most comfortable working with. This is how we approached things a while back:
1/ Whatever product we used has to be in the cloud
2/ We would use just one - master it, become an expert in it
3/ Integrate where possible so we have one source of truth without exporting/importing and all that jazz
We started with Xero using products like TaxCalc. Now we are on XeroTax, we have been able to rationalise our "app stack" and are able to turn things around a lot quicker. So, this is what have
XeroTax for accounts prep and tax calcs
HubDoc to fetch online bills and to process scanned/emailed bills
ChaserHQ for Cashflow Management
Fluidly for Cashflow Forecasting
Spotlight for Management Accounting
Also, if not now certainly at some point, consider something like The Gap Portal for all sorts of advisory offerings and to give/add value to your clients. This includes an awesome onboarding tool as well which goes from prospect to new client
24th Oct 2019
Provided you have the PayPal feed going into Xero, this is very straightforward. PayPal loans have two features - the loan advanced with a fixed fee (instead of interest) and the repayments always go to PayPal Europe. So,
Step 1 - setup a PayPal loan account in which you record the money received from PayPal. Also, do a journal for the fixed fee, attaching the contract. Eg CR PayPal loan £2000, DR bank fees £2000. [Or, alternatively, put them in the receive money transaction
Step 2 - in the PayPal bank account, have two rules so payments to and from PayPal Europe come out of/go to the loan account
30th Sep 2019
1/ For minimum keystrokes, with no further manipulation, provided you are happy with
* always entering three or four digits
* having a format of 01-04-18, say, instead of 01/04/18
then use the format 00-00-18. Thus 104 would become 01/04/18. However, 114 would become 01-14-18, hence the need for four digits, in this example 1104
2/ Alternatively, use the text format "0000"; then, in the adjacent column use a formula. Eg with A1 having 104 formated as text to show "0104", the formula should be
whilst this formula could be streamlined, I haven't as that'll make it more complicated than it needs to be
Oh, depending on the version of Excel, the formatting as the formula would work for numbers
3/ A third alternative, but not one I would recommend, is - if you don't mind an extra keystroke and definitely want 01/04/18 - then use the format
BUT, this only changes the display of a 2019 date. Eg 1/4 would show as 01/04/18, but is actually 01/04/19
4/ Note those solutions I have seen which suggest then entering the dates then taking away 365 will cause problems if you apply them in the future when you have leap years to contend with as well as "normal" years
31st Jan 2019
You don't have to download Zoom to join the call. If you go to zoom.us in the top right menu there is "Join A Meeting". From there you can enter the meeting id. For example, if the link is https://zoom.us/j/957048819 you would enter 957048819
Now, having cleared that up, I thoroughly recommend Zoom. Having started on the free plan, we have a modest subscription which allows us to have meetings of unrestricted length. Crucially we can record them. Our clients love the fact that they can play back training sessions or of those of the "what have I done wrong" or "what could I do better" variety
23rd Oct 2018
First of all, there is a legal contract in place. At the very least implied by the email you received and the actions he took by supplying you the details you requested. You have not stated whether contemporarily you spoke to the client; but to all intents and purposes a contract is in place and, if you proceed to the small claims court via Money Claim Online, you should have a successful outcome.
Now, as regards the Letter of Engagement, of course, this should have been signed. After all, hopefully, it clearly defines the nature of the contract and gives both parties a solid foundation for their working relationship. While yes, there can be legal difficulties without a signature, the absence of signature does not necessarily mean a contract has been formed.
Best of luck!
20th Oct 2018
Sadly, in our practice, this is an all-too common discovery when we get retained by a new client. Here is our process.
Irrespective of the package used, start a new Xero account. Fresh start, no hidden horrors to find, fix or both.
Roll back to the start of the financial year and up load the transactions
Likewise, get Receipt Bank integrated and send to RB the receipts & invoices. Methodically looking at the "paperwork" there will help you understand the expenses and give you a feel of what's going out
Back in Xero, figure out who owes/might owe your company money at the year-end, as a likely conversion balance, and then prioritise bank receipts and entry of invoices issued since y/e. This too will assist in understanding "where the money comes from"
Send customer statements out, with a "due diligence" covering email; be prepared for some flak. For the most part we have had nice responses
Integrate Chaser HQ to automate the credit control process
...and (finally) start working your way through the mess. Granted, as Xero dedicated practice, with accepted proposal, we are in control of who does what, and thus we don't have to worry about external staff trying to hold sway. Simply, stand your ground and plod through.
Hope this helps!
Best of luck
28th Sep 2018
I may regret asking this, but why non-cloud based?
7th Sep 2018
Having been in the position of having a similar client, here are my thoughts.
No one client should take more than 25% of your income. If/when your rainy day fund can carry the business for at least nine months, you should have the courage to broach The Subject with the client. (I say nine months, simply for three to settle down and three to gear up, with three to hire more staff or, heaven forbid, let people go.)
When you approach the client try this tactic. Explain a core value, like one of excellence, and say how important it is for your practice to do its work well and to maintain its reputation. The ever moving deadlines are creating problems: the work for your other clients is suffering, but - crucially - the mad panics are compromising your core value of excellence for them, your valued client. Therefore you will be hiring extra staff to cope with this. Accordingly, your fees will go up by 25%. Unless you are underselling yourself and not charging a reasonable fee, the chances are the client will walk away or try to barter. Hold firm. Let him walk away.
If you retain the client, seriously look at outsourcing work (which we have done) to free up internal resources and so be able to take on new clients to get to the 25% max for one client. Also, when the client adds more work, like a new company, simply say yes, but increase the fee at the very least proportionately.
I speak from experience. Tough, but very much doable.
Best of luck
24th Aug 2018
As I have my own practice, there are two golden rules. Never work Sundays with at least two Saturdays off per month: being with family and recharging your batteries are important. Secondly, my working days are geared towards my clients who mostly work flat out in their own businesses... 9 to 5 (at least). Within reason, I schedule meetings to suit them and flex my working hours around them. The first challenges them not to work all hours to death; the second gives them respect and the wow factor of my practice
14th Aug 2018
If it helps, I find this regime works very well
1) Use Sanebox (sanebox.com) to sort out incoming mail, binning spam and the like, and putting emails into folders like "Read Later", "News", etc
2) Use Postbox (postbox-inc.com) as your mail client using features like organising incoming emails by moving them to special folders, or putting as high priority emails marked as "URGENT", and so on
3) Be ultra disciplined, even when you are on your own in the office, and pick up emails at set times during work hours
As an example, of how 1) and 2) work, my Sanebox has been trained for all client emails to stay in the inbox; Postbox then moves them into the relevant client folders. Thus, when I do read my mail, I can quickly and easily focus on the clients' correspondence first, then the rest follows as time allows - usually about 50 emails in less than five minutes, highlighting the ones I should read for when I have quality time to do so.