Fall

a time to harvest, reflect and prepare

There’s nothing like the crisp cool fall mornings here in the high desert of New Mexico. It is my favorite time of year. The nights are cool, the days are warm. The air sparkles. Hot Air Balloons are populating the early morning sky. Soon there will be hundred’s as the opening day of the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta draws near. A short drive north to our neighboring state Colorado and you will see the beauty of the fall leaves in a myriad of oranges, reds, and yellows against the stark white of the Aspen. I recall sitting with Dad and watching the huge leaves of a walnut tree tumbling in a fall breeze across his lawn last fall. They appeared to be a troop of gymnasts arrayed in fall colors turning cartwheels. Ah Fall! A time of harvest, reflection, and preparation for the coming winter. Soon it will be a new year. (more…)

HubDoc

Document Management System

We are always looking for solutions our clients can use that improve their workflows and address their pain points. Our favorite features address those pain points that seems so small and yet drive us crazy and take time out of our day. The return in efficiency, time and a strong workflow makes HubDoc an easy recommendation to clients. It is a good first piece in a technology solution stack. (more…)

Lessons from Starbucks

Reading the article “Howard Schultz hands the ‘keys to Starbucks’ to incoming CEO and tech veteran Kevin Johnson” last week, I was reminded of the journey of Starbucks and the many business lessons to be learned.

As an avid reader of business books and an accountant working with small business owners – I enjoyed Onward-How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul,by Howard Schultz and Joanne Gordon. My favorite lesson is where Schultz, having come back as Starbucks CEO, talks about his learning to look under the hood. We find that many business owners, large and small struggle with accounting as it is an area of the business they are not comfortable with or don’t understand well.

“…enlightened me to my own shortcomings as a leader: I hadn’t delved far enough into the areas of the business that I was not comfortable with or had little innate interest in. I should have looked under the hood more often.” Howard Schultz

 

What’s business lesson have you learned from Starbucks?

Data Tips – When More Is Less

With today’s OCR technology, software integrations, automation and bank feeds we are using data differently. Today, more is less.

No longer do we look to consolidate or minimize. I remember when we used ‘generic’ vendors in vendors lists so you didn’t have every gas station in the area in the vendor list.

A frequent question today, is “What should I do about all these names coming thru my bank feed? I recommend accepting and adding them to your contacts and creating a bank rule. Why? More data can mean less work and greater efficiency. (more…)

Butterflies & Change

Change is not always easy. Perhaps this is intentional as only after the struggle when the butterfly chrysalis opens is the true beauty appreciated.

Accounting continues to evolve and change. New software and new technology continues to advance at an incredible pace. It is changing the face of accounting as we know it. Our clients are changing software. Their needs are changing. They are looking at automation as a resource to fill gaps, reduce costs and enhance their current processes. They need new procedures. They need an Accountant; a Strategic Advisor.

We at SunDog Consulting are changing to help our clients meet these needs. Check out our new website. Subscribe to our blog to stay up on Small Business News, Solutions, Tips and Technologies. Let us hear from you on Facebook and follow us on Twitter as we embrace Change.

Bookkeeper or Accountant?

An often-asked question: “What’s the difference between a bookkeeper and an Accountant?”  

Often used interchangeably, there is a difference in the primary roles of bookkeeper and accountants that business owners should understand.

Bookkeeping dates back to the late 1400’s when the double-entry bookkeeping  system fort racking business transactions, codified by Luca Pacioli  in 1494 in his book Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria and Proportioni et Porportionalita was published. The system provides the techniques for which businesses can follow transactions, generate statements of the organization and gain financial understanding.  Arguably the best place to glean a better understanding and to differentiate these roles you can still purchase his treatise on Amazon today.  For those of you not as interested in history and bookkeeping as I am, the short answer is one ‘keeps the books’ and the other ‘interprets them’.

The bookkeeper is responsible for the accurate and timely recording of the day-to-day transactions and activities of the business; purchases, sales, receipts, and payments. Bookkeepers process the data of business. They ‘code’. The live in the details of your business. Bookkeepers deal with the day-to-day head on.

Accountants on the other hand are big picture people. They verify the data and turn data into information and reports which they analyze. Financial statements tell a story that an accountant can read, understand and interpret to inform business owners of margins, trends, forecasts, cash flow and growth opportunities.

Both bookkeeper and accountant are concerned about the accuracy of the data and use various processes to check for errors and validate the data.

With today’s technology, the roles are changing as automation enhances the day to day tasks of keeping the books. Automation relieves the bookkeeper of some of the mundane task of data entry into the accounting system and at the same time enhances coding of data for greater efficiency and fewer errors. Integration of various systems makes this data available across multiple platforms providing business owners and their bookkeeper and accountant reports at their fingertips in real time. Valuable information to any business owner.

Fitness

It’s that time of year when our thoughts turn from the holidays indulgences to getting fit. New Year’s resolutions are made to exercise more, get in shape, lose weight. If you were lucky enough to get a Fitbit for Christmas, you’ll love this.

The well-known App Integrator IFTTT recently featured Fitbit in its January newsletter along with other health-focused Applets to keep you accountable and help you reach your goals.

 

Speaking of being accountable, IFTTT helps enhance business workflows with Applets connecting Gmail , Outlook, Evernote, Box, Dropbox and beyond. Sync Outlook and Google Calendar so you don’t miss an appointment. Have routine email reports sent to Box for storage. Add a note to Evernote.

Whether for Fitness, Fun or Workflow Improvement; Find solutions for your favorite apps at IFTTT.

 

If This, Then That