Accounting Year End Tips…by ‘Ben and Me’

accounting-year-end-tipsI wanted to give you some tips that will help make year end a little less crazy. I decided to see if one of America’s Founding Fathers could give you some principles. (BTW: I loved the movie Ben and Me when I was a kid. I think I might even buy it when I finish this post.)

“Never leave till tomorrow that which you can do today.”

There are several items on the year end checklist you can do at any time. I, in fact, recommend that you beef up your month-end checklist and add the following:

  • Post all batches for the month you are closing. Use the Master Posting window to see all unposted batches for each company: Administration>>Routines>>Master Posting.
  • Delete unused/empty “Unposted” batches.
  • Always clear out Batch Recovery
    • (Administration>>Routines>>Batch Recovery). If you see something, write down the ID and type of batch it is or better yet, take a screenshot.
    • Click “Continue”. This will either complete the posting, or unlock the batch so you will be able to review and edit.
    • Print the Edit List if it didn’t post.
    • Fix the errors and post again.
  • Review GL Account Setup
    • Use SmartList>>Financial>>Accounts
    • If you don’t start your accounts with the Main segment, add this by clicking on Columns. You can sort by the segment and look for items that are setup incorrectly. (Use this tip learn how to save a SmartList Favorite).
  • Review 1099 Vendor Setup.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”

One of the most important items you should be doing month-to-month is: Make Sure Your GL Balances to the Subledger

Once you find the errors, use it as a chance to train the person that caused the discrepancy. Involve them in the research and documentation of the issue. Have them open the transaction via the Inquiry screens and have them write the note to explain what happened.

Most companies require that the folks in the warehouse do a periodic stock  count. Why not have your accounting staff double check their paper or electronic file folders or inboxes with open  AR and AP invoices/credits? Could they add those documents up and balance to the number that is listed on your financials?

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

The most time consuming painful part of year-end close is fixing all the wacky little problems that creep into your data all year. Prevent user mistakes by:

  • Prevent Journal Entries to “Control Accounts” by unchecking “Allow Account Entry” on the Account Maintenance window.
  • If you are doing Journal Entries directly to cash, please STOP now!! Use a Cash Clearing account so that you can Increase or Decrease the checkbook balance using a Bank Transaction. Then you can clear that clearing account and reconcile the Checkbook and tie the GL to the Checkbook Balance.
  • Close Fiscal Periods. I would much rather have someone come and ask you to re-open a period vs. having crazy wacky messed up transactions in a period you already “closed”. Much less stress to uncheck a box vs. explaining what happened to your boss or to the “board”. Use this tip to learn how to close specific windows in GP.

I have a few more tips for year-end coming soon!!

-amber j.bell

 

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