Thought Leadership from the Leaders in Virtual Accounting and Bookkeeping Services

Profits vs. Profitability: Why You Need to Track Profit Margins

Posted by Kris Merritt on Wed, Dec 17, 02014

You don’t need an MBA to know there are two basic ways to increase your profits: increase revenues or reduce costs. The smartest businesses implement marketing strategies and cost-cutting measures that do both, but far too many obsess so much over increased sales that they forget about the importance of trimming the fat, and end up actually reducing profits.

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Tags: accounting strategies, bookkeeping services, small business tips

The 3 Best Practices of Job Costing

Posted by Dennis Najjar on Mon, Dec 15, 02014

Job costing, particularly in the construction industry, is as much an art as it is a science. It's a careful balance between making sure your firm and employees are paid fairly and having a shrewd eye for remaining competitive in the marketplace. If you aren't getting the project bids your company deserves, you may need to look at implementing best practices for job costing.

1. Don't forget to factor in the small costs.

You want to account for all costs associated with a project, even if you are only giving the client a general estimate and not an itemized breakdown of the job costing process. The little costs add up quickly, and it's easy to end up with a project that is vastly over budget because you failed to consider these costs initially. You either eat the costs or end up with an unhappy client, and neither of these are ideal situations for long-term success. Keeping tabs on the actual project costs gives you an accurate financial base that will allow you to come up with a fair price for both you and your client.

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Tags: Bookkeeping Best Practices, small business bookkeeping, job costing

3 Tips For Implementing a New Time Tracking System

Posted by Bill Gerber on Fri, Dec 12, 02014

You have time sheets spread throughout your office, your human resources department is threatening to quit because figuring out who's taking vacation time is an impossible task, and your punch in system for employees belongs in a museum. You dream of aligning time spent on projects with budgets and forecasts but can't fathom how to get from here to there. Instead of putting yourself through more stress and complicating your accounting, consider implementing a new time tracking system with these 3 tips.

1. Talk to employees and the HR department to determine what features they want out of a time tracking system. Compare vendors to find a system that is as convenient and hassle free as possible to cut down on the amount of complaints that come from changing an integral business system. You want to have a system that works for the people who have to use it day in and out. Many time tracking systems also integrate with other software solutions, so look into options that work with your existing applications to streamline your business operation.

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Tags: bookkeeping services, accounting software, time tracking

3 Reasons to Use Time Tracking Even if You Charge a Flat Rate

Posted by Kris Merritt on Thu, Dec 11, 02014

Your company always uses flat rates for client projects. You don't want to deal with the hassle of time tracking, the push back from clients who think your hourly rate is too high compared to a flat rate and the extra accounting services involved. However, there are a few valid reasons to use time tracking even if you're a strict adherent to flat rate pricing.
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Tags: accounting services, time tracking, job costing

Job Costing for Construction Firms: How to Ensure Profitability

Posted by Dennis Najjar on Wed, Dec 10, 02014

More than 2.5 million construction firms in the United States, some big, some small, some successful, are struggling to stay above water, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. One of the reasons many firms encounter problems has nothing to do with construction; it has to do with finances. Seventy-five percent of construction companies said that job costing was a major concern in a recent survey by the Construction Research Corporation.

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Tags: bookkeeping services, accounting services, job costing

The 7 Deadly Sins of Bookkeeping

Posted by Bill Gerber on Fri, Dec 05, 02014

Accounting is a tedious and often stressful task for business owners. When working on the bookkeeping for a business, mistakes can occur if it is not completed meticulously. When a bookkeeping mistake happens, it provides inaccurate financial data about the company’s finances and may lead to poor business decisions. Accounting errors can also lead to serious budget problems. The guide below provides insight on seven common deadly sins of bookkeeping and how to avoid them.

1. Not Keeping Track Of Receipts

Business owners are sometimes not aware of the importance of keeping their business receipts for accounting purposes. Receipts are crucial evidence that can support tax write-offs to the IRS. Without a receipt, a business may not be able to claim an expense on its tax return. Consider scanning all receipts into the computer as well as keeping the original copy locked in a file cabinet for safekeeping.

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Tags: Bookkeeping Best Practices, small business bookkeeping, accounting tips

9 Top Sales Tax Tips for Small Businesses in 2015

Posted by Kris Merritt on Wed, Dec 03, 02014

As small businesses look forward to 2015, tax considerations may be looming on owners' minds. The sales tax implications related to owning your own business can be confusing, and failing to comply with regulations is often costly. Here are nine sales tax tips that small businesses can use in 2015

Make your prepayments.

Small businesses are often required to make prepayments on their sales tax as it is collected. If you fail to comply with this requirement, you could face hefty fines that add to the amount you owe. Remitting sales tax as it is due will keep you from facing a big bill that will impact cash flow. Be sure to check on the requirements for each applicable jurisdiction.

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Tags: accounting strategies, bookkeeping services, small business tips, sales tax

Convert Deltek to QuickBooks, The DCAA Way

Posted by Dennis Najjar on Mon, Dec 01, 02014

Recently we've received an increased number of inquiries from government contractors interested in transitioning from Deltek to Quickbooks and concerned with their overall costs as well as the performance of their  accounting services providers. Understandably, this led us to take a pause and consider what our government contractor clients' concerns were--and how we were addressing them. There is a massive amount of information and regulations involved in DCAA compliance, and we provide these DCAA accounting services for government clients, but if you're looking to understand your options and help digest an overwhelming amount of information, the following overview is for you.

The History of DCAA Compliant Accounting

The escalation of U.S. involvement in Vietnam after the Gulf of Tonkin incident led to a rapid rise in the number of government contracts awarded for military equipment. In his 1961 farewell address, when he used the term “military–industrial complex,” President Dwight D. Eisenhower offered a warning about the growing fiscal relationship between the defense industry and policy legislators.

The following year, in a study known as Project 60, Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara ordered an examination of the contract management and administration processes of all branches of the armed services. As a result of this study, many of the Defense Department’s contract administration responsibilities were shifted to the Defense Logistics Agency. The study also resulted in the creation of the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) in 1965.

Department of Defense spending continued to grow throughout the following decades. Incidents such as the $436 hammer scandal exacerbated public concerns regarding government waste and overspending. Although the enormously inflated cost of the hammer was later shown to be an accounting error and not an invoiced purchase price, similar stories of Pentagon waste led to another in-depth review of contract administration within the Department of Defense. In 1990, Defense Management Review Decision 916 resulted in the establishment of the Defense Contract Management Command (DCMC) within the Defense Logistics Agency. Cost-type proposals less than $100 million and fixed-type proposals less than $10 million are reviewed by the DCMC.

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Tags: quickbooks tips, deltek, dcaa, government accounting

Giving Thanks at AccountingDepartment.com

Posted by Andrea Boccard on Wed, Nov 26, 02014

Every year during the holiday season we reflect on all that the past year has brought. From excellent staff new and tenured to wonderful clients, company events and national awards, we always have so much to be thankful for. This year is no exception and may in fact be our most thankful year yet. In no particular order, the following are just a few of the many, many reasons we are especially thankful this Thanksgiving.

An Accounting Team Like No Other

It is pretty rare to find perfection in a company--and while we cannot swear perfection, we do strive for it. And with a team handpicked from the best the country has to offer, we can't help but be incredibly thankful for the opportunity to assemble the best accounting services team around.

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Tags: accounting services, accountingdepartment.com

Things to Consider When Choosing an Online Accounting Service

Posted by Bill Gerber on Mon, Nov 24, 02014

Choosing an online accounting service is not easy. You’re putting your trust and your company’s financial future in the hands of individuals you will probably never meet face to face. But when you finally make the decision to hire a virtual accounting firm, there are ways to make sure you’re getting the services you need at the prices you can afford. Selecting the best online accounting service begins with determining your company’s needs and then evaluating specific factors before making your choice.

Factor #1: The Virtual Accounting Services You Need

It’s important to determine the level of online accounting services you require. Many of our customers are tired of the high turnover rate with their in-house bookkeepers and require professional bookkeeping services but not on a daily basis. Some simply can no longer have a less-than-qualified employee managing their books. Whether you need daily, weekly or monthly online accounting services, we can customize a package that will meet your needs and budget. Then we provide you with a Service Level Agreement that is our guarantee we will provide the services we promise.

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Tags: outsourced accounting services, bookkeeping services, accounting services

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