Going paperless can save you time and money.

Going paperless can save you time and money.

Have you always been interested in “going green”—becoming more paperless?  Our Professional Learning Center, SMART-U, will be soon offering classes to help you develop your paperless system. Meanwhile, here are five ways to make your accounting a little more green.

Business Receipts

When you spend money on your business, ask for a receipt to be emailed rather than a paper copy—if you have an option. More and more vendors are providing this option, and it’s helpful to have the digital version in your workspace. When the receipt comes in your email, you can forward it to your bookkeeper for her to upload it to your accounting system.  Many accounting systems, including QuickBooks, allow you to attach digital copies of receipts and invoices to the payment mechanism.

Smile for the Camera

If the vendor does not offer an emailed receipt, do the next best thing:  take a picture of the receipt with your cell phone.   Some accounting systems allow you to upload the receipt right from your phone; and if you don’t have that feature, you can always email it or upload it to your PC.

PDF Invoices

If you invoice customers, send a PDF invoice via email.  More and more businesses are abandoning the snail mail and getting it to customers faster via email.  Almost all of my clients prefer a digital invoice sent directly to their email address. They’re paying faster, and speeding up my “green” is a good thing!

Online Banking

Many people adopted online banking about a decade ago.   If you’re still getting paper statements, you can get those stopped and download your statements once a month from your online account.  It’s better not to get your statement in the mail anymore; it reduces your risk of identity theft from stolen mail.  And, downloading the transactions makes manual data entry time-consuming and labor expensive. Most banks allow you to add a bookkeeper with specific controls and restricting most activities. Ask us how to set this up to protect yourself!

Software and Supplies

When possible, purchase your software online and download it rather than making a gas-guzzling trip to the store and purchasing a box.  You can also order your office supplies online and have them delivered.   As long as you buy local, it should be a green purchase, and it will save you tons of time too.

These five ideas will help your accounting become a little greener and help you move to a paperless office!