ScanSnap and Hubdoc are in #LOVE

By | App Review, Cloud Accounting Option and Reviews, Document Management, Procedures, ScanSnap
Hubdoc ScanSnap iX500

ScanSnap iX500 and Hubdoc – are now seamlessly integrated

We received a call today from a potential client; a law firm, looking for a new bookkeeper since their bookkeeper is retiring. Like with any other call, we asked them for the overview and a roadmap of the current process they have with their bookkeeper.

  • Currently using QuickBooks Desktop
  • Bookkeeper is working from their office
  • When she is not, they send her the documents via mail (not email!), she works on the files and send those back to the law office
  • They are using Bill4Time software (yay!) but it’s not currently linked to the QB file

Three years ago, I would have contemplated to take over the same workflow and would have thought that I am doing my clients a favor for not changing their rhythm.

Hubdoc ScanSnap Books LA Integration

Integration between ScanSnap and Hubdoc is what we were waiting for!

Instead, we have talked about what we can now do with the available technology:

  • We can move the company file over to the QuickBooks Online. We like QB Desktop a lot but are supporting QBO and Xero only because:
  • We can work offsite, not using their office space and being way more efficient by not ever being stuck in LA traffic.
  • Because now we can scan the files with one touch to Fujitsu ScanSnap and send it straight to Hubdoc – so no file will ever leave the office, but it would be accessible in cloud and searchable by CTRL+F
  • We would connect the Bill4time directly to QBO for a seamless and easy reporting.

Just a week ago, I wouldn’t be able to recommend this seamless workflow and offer such a convenience that we can offer today. Just a week ago, we used to scan all our documents to ScanSnap Cloud and then drag+drop the documents to Hubdoc. Now that has changed since ScanSnap and Hubdoc are in LOVE!

ScanSnap: We love our ScanSnap iX500!

A few months ago, we posted a blog on our website with a story of moving our entire HON 4 drawer lateral file cabinet to the cloud. Just imagine how much easier the life would be if you could search all your files with CRTL+F = ALL! Well, we can! And it’s an amazing time saver!

Yes, scanning the files with a regular scanner might seem like a good idea. However, scanning with a regular scanner will make your files readable. But could those files talk as well? No!

Using the ScanSnap scanner your files will talk! Yes, talk! With many, many programs and tools that are accessible now. How? Well, ABBYY USA Technology is now part of the Fujitsu ScanSnap

So files are scanned perfectly – regardless of the shape and size, and are easy to read!

Hubdoc: We love Hubdoc!

Hubdoc ScanSnap TOP 50 Books LA

Books LA was included in this prestigious list for the second year in the row

It is not a secret that we LOVE Hubdoc! Books LA is a hard-core fan, groupie even, of a Hubdoc. Besides the fact that the whole Hubdoc team is probably the best there is, with a super friendly and knowledgeable staff who are always super happy to help, Hubdoc SOLVED our problems

Since January 2015 using Hubdoc became a requirement for any of our clients.

If things could get better – they sure did!

 

Last week it was announced a ScanSnap and Hubdoc integration! AND IT’S A MUSIC TO OUR BOOKKEEPERS EARS!

 

ScanSnap is the best scanner out there: Review of ScanSnap at Lawyerist.com 

ScanSnap + Hubdoc = #LOVE

That law office client that called today, we can simplify the workflow.

By having a ScanSnap scanner, they can easily scan all the necessary documents over to Hubdoc – DIRECTLY! Because the scan quality is superb, the Hubdoc can easily OCR the whole document, and easily extract the name, date, amount, type… And Hubdoc will file the document in the appropriate folder; one vendor- one folder.

 

From Hubdoc we can easily ‘push’ the documents over to QBO or Xero. That way we can attach the PDF, .jpg to a transaction and have the backup readily available in the QBO or Xero, and email the backup along with the invoice.

And it’s that simple!

With ScanSnap scanners your documents will talk + Hubdoc will listen and understand = jointly both will seamlessly communicate with your accounting software ( Quickbooks Online, Xero, Sage. Intacct..)

This is a marriage made in heaven!

 

Setup is super easy!

 

Step One: During the Setup select Hubdoc from the offered cloud storage options

 

 

 

 

Step Two: Login to Hubdoc with your credentials

 

 

 

 

 Step Three: CONNECTED!

 

#Done!

 

 

Meal and Entertainment – Travel meals – Employee meals – Office parties

By | Dining, Procedures, Uncategorized

What is the difference? Is there a difference? Why does it matter?

Mike Russo, from Less Taxing Services, LLC wrote a good, entertaining and clear guide when in comes to meals and the deduction parentage.

 

“When I talk to clients about the need for professionals being involved in their finances, I describe a box of donuts.

That simple box of donuts can be coded 10 different ways (another group came up with 11 or 12, but I can’t find that list…some of them were WAY off the wall, though, so we’ll stick with 10). Once coded, the donuts could then show up on at least 7 different tax forms. (Schedule C, 1120, 1120S, 1065, 990, Form 2106 and Schedule A)

It’s never as simple as just buying a box of donuts.

 

– No Deduction – I buy a box of donuts and eat the whole thing while in town at my tax home. (Note, this would be 50% deductible if you were out of town traveling for business.)

– 50% Deductible Business Expense – I buy a box of donuts and share them with the 10 people in my first sales meeting of the day

– 50% Deductible Non-Reimbursed Employee Expense – Same as above, but now I’m an employee and my employer requires me to supply food in my business meetings but doesn’t reimburse me for it. (While this is still 50% deductible, it’s an itemized deduction and won’t even begin to count until you’ve crossed the threshold of 2% of your income.)

– 100% Deductible Business Expense – I buy a box of donuts, takes them to my first sales call and leave them in their lobby by the coffee for all to enjoy…even people off the street.

– 100% Deductible Non-Reimbursed Employee Expense – Same as above, but now I’m an employee and my employer requires me to supply food in my business meetings but doesn’t reimburse me for it. (While this is still 50% deductible, it’s an itemized deduction and won’t even begin to count until you’ve crossed the threshold of 2% of your income.)

– 80% Deductible Business Expense – I buy a box of donuts that I use as breakfast and lunch while driving my big rig across the country. (I’m subject to DOT rules.)

– 80% Deductible Non-Reimbursed Employee Expense – Same as above, but now I’m an employee and my employer don’t have any provision for meals while I drive. (While this is still 50% deductible, it’s an itemized deduction and won’t even begin to count until you’ve crossed the threshold of 2% of your income.)

– 100% Deductible Personally – I buy a box of donuts and donate them to the church bake sale. (This is deductible, but it’s only on the personal return…even if you did this for a Corp, it would still pass through to the shareholders and wouldn’t be deductible at the corp level.)

– 100% Deductible as COGS – I buy a box of donuts to resell.

– 100% Deductible as an Ordinary and Necessary Business Expense – I buy a box of donuts to use as a prop during a tax talk where I discuss the ways a box of donuts can be coded. 🙂

Now, who wants a donut? :)”

 

The 33 Best Donut Shops in America –Huffington Post

 

Are you ready to file W-2’s and 1099’s by the new deadline?

By | Procedures

Upcoming changes – Deadline to file 1099’s and W-2’s

Did you know that beginning with 2016 forms, the employees must file by a new deadline?
W2’s is to be filed by January 31, 2017 – e-file, mail, employee copy, agency copy… Regardless! The forms are now due by January 31, 2017. Simple as that!
Deadline to file 1099’s is changing as well, but not for all filings. If your business will be filling a 1099’s and reporting amounts in BOX 7 (Nonemployee compensation) – the new deadline is also January 31, 2017 – -e-filing, mailing, recipient – deadline for all is January 31, 2017. However, 1099’s with no Box 7 reporting are still due by February 28, 2017 by mail, or March 31, 2017 by e-filing

Solution:

– Have your books updated and completed by the end of the year, and be ready for the deadline in January 2017. It’s always a good idea to update the financials on monthly basis. By updating the books on the regular basis, you will have a way better understanding of your business performance and can plan your future success.
– Use payroll service. We highly recommend Gusto. With a very reasonable monthly fee your forms will be distributed and filed on time. No need to stress.

 

Intuit published and article on this subject :

Beginning 2017 IRS changes W-2 & 1099 filing deadlines

 

Tax season is upon us! Let’s get ready!

ScanSnap to the rescue!

By | Cloud Accounting Option and Reviews, Document Management, ScanSnap

Mission: HON 4 drawer lateral filing cabinet – to Scan Snap Cloud


Mission Accomplished!

ix100-model

ScanSnap IX100

I was introduced to a ScanSnap IX100 at the QB Connect ’15 in San Jose and was blown away by the quality, speed, simplicity and design of that small but mighty powerful scanner. And that scanner was the only thing I needed in the past year! If I was to receive any documents, or receipts, I would just push the document through the scanner, regardless of the size, and would get a quality document that would be easily extracted by PDF2XL software.

 

Earlier in the Spring of 2016 I was made aware that the building next door (or should I be more specific and say – 6 yards away) will be tearing down and the new and improved 5 stories high building will be built in its place. What that meant was that I will lose that little sunlight I had in my office. And that is if I am able to endure the contraction noise just a few feet away for at least 12 months.  That was the idea, I needed to be strong and tune out the noise.

c4577d84-7be1-42e9-859f-58521366cae4-jpg-_cb300907493_

ScanSnap IX500

Well, that is way easier said than done!  The office was located in the building that wasn’t soundproof /at all/ anyhow, and the vibrations alone became unbearable. The only option I had was moving! And that was not in my plan. The summer was supposed to be fun, my stepdaughter was coming for a summer, and that would be her first time to the US. I was all in the plans of what we will do once she is here. Moving wasn’t on the agenda. However, shortly after the construction started I released that NOT moving wasn’t on the new agenda either.

So, we quickly found a new place and were set to move last week of June 2016. My husband flew back to LA with his daughter just a few days before we were supposed to move. The new place was great except that my HON 4 drawer lateral filing cabinet could not fit into my new office. It was full of old papers and old documents that I might need some day. The files in the filing cabinet were there well before we implemented 100% could policy in Books LA.

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Those boxes look much smaller on the pictures! The boxes were huge!

 

One thing I had in mind was – ScanSnap!

In May 2016 I was at the Scaling New Heights Conference.  As the luck would

have it, I was a lucky winner of the #ScanSnap IX500 Contest!  Scaling New Heights Conference was amazing, but winning my new #IX500 was a cherry on the top! ScanSnap IX500 was coming to my rescue at the right moment.

 

My plan was, once we move to a new location, to have the scanning party time with my 13-year-old stepdaughter. And to scan the documents from the 4 drawers to my #ScanSnap cloud.

The plan was to have the whole project done in 4 weeks, one per each drawer.

That WAS the plan!

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ScanSnap Fujitsu Contest winning selfie!

 

Well, that didn’t happen! What happened was – I should have known that my step daughter would

rather watch Pretty Little Liars than help me (with pay – using #TSheets and all) in the office. OK, noted! #LearnedMyStepMomLesson!

 

So, I approached the task at hand and had a bit of anxiety at the beginning. I had 3 extra-large boxes of files, a will, and my ScanSnap IX500. All that and the goal of 4 weeks – start to finish

 

Fast forward 3 weeks later!

(yes, JUST 3 weeks!!)

 

Files- gone! Boxes – Gone!

ScanSnap IX500 – visible and sitting decluttered on my desk, getting some rest.

ScanSnap is the best scanner out there! Quality is amazing, the interface is super simple, and the design is really cool!scansnap

A month after I have finished my project, I was visiting a client of mine. Just the day before my visit, we were on the phone, and he was telling me how much he dislikes his regular scanner. Talk about scanning 26 pages of one bill, and scanning only one side of the document at the time, since the scanner they had in the office have had an issue with scanning double-sided documents. And then scanning the other side of the 26-page document, just to combine the two PDF’s in one! Ouch!

I was sure that they might have more bills and documents for scanning so I took my IX500 and went the next day to their office. That 26-page document was scanned within 35 sec – BOTH SIDES! And the quality was that good, the data was easily extracted by the PDF2XL Enterprise.  The rest of the bills were scanned within 10 minutes – ALL OF THEM! My client was that impressed that they immediately ordered one for their office. What a saver!

 

What have I learned from this project?

  1. Scanning can be fun!
  2. Scanning with ScanSnap IX100 is all you need for the cloud, BUT:
  3. Scanning with ScanSnap IX500 is way easier for the larger projects and offices!
  4. Scanning is not fun for a 13-year-old
  5. Shredding IS super fun project for a 13-year-old, and that is easily accomplished by finishing the:
  6. Task of scanning a HON lateral 4-drawer filing cabinet is so doable and easy!
  7. Life is way easier without the papers around!
  8. Bookkeepers life is way easier when the 4-drawer filing cabinet CAN be searched with CTRL+F
  9. And, I can’t wait for the ScanSnap + Hubdoc integration

scansnap_logo

Again, THANK YOU ScanSnap! Thank you, Fujitsu!

 

*Fujitsu has 3 other models – Comparison grid can be found here

What is Hubdoc? Why Hubdoc? And why are we so excited to be a part of their prestigious list?

By | App Review, Cloud Accounting Option and Reviews, Document Management

Hubdoc

For the past year we have been praising Hubdoc and thanking them for existing every step of the way. Chances are, if your company hired Books LA for your bookkeeping needs, you most likely know what Hubdoc is and how is it benefiting your business.

Hubdoc became a part of the everyday workflow and frankly, we don’t see that changing any time soon!

So, you might ask why Hubdoc and why are we so excited to be a part of the awesome group of TOP 50 accounting and bookkeeping practices for 2015 … well, here are few reasons why we LOVE HUBDOC and why have we made this great app A MUST in our bookkeeping process:

  • Instead of logging in into your bank and pulling one by one PDF of the bank statements, then going back and searching for the check, clicking on images and pulling the PDF to send it over to your bookkeeper.. or pulling the deposit images and checks and saving those by the date and not by the funky long string file name, or figuring it out how to name the file… Then sending the documents via email (please don’t) or sharing them over Google Drive, Dropbox, Box where its still very hard to sort them out…

Solution: Log into the Hubdoc, click on the account linked in Hubdoc sorted by the last 4 digits, click on the sub folder called checks, deposits, statements… All PDFs are there, in order, by date, just images.. and ready for viewing with just one click. Done!

  • Let’s say you are looking for an invoice for a purchase made through Amazon more then a few months ago. Or there is a Uber receipt that you would like to find, but there are so may of them and now its hard to filter them out. Or maybe there is a cell phone bill you would like to see. Well, most likely you would log in to the site in question, go through the recent purchases and receipts, try to locate the one, save as PDF and send it to the bookkeeper, or forward via email.

Solution: Log into the Hubdoc, link the Amazon’s, Uber’s… chances are, if you have a user name and password for the account, the accounts will link into Hubdoc. If the account is not yet available to be linked (recently I haven’t found one yet, but there still are few), let Hubdoc’s awesome support know which one account is missing and they will work on it to bring the account over. They are just awesome like that!

  • Let’s say you have  cash receipt for a parking, or have a restaurant receipt that you accidentally used personal account for. So usually you would have kept the receipt in your car for a long time, and the chances are the ink will fade or you will forget who where you with at the lunch or what was it for?

Solution: Open up a Hubdoc app, snap a picture of the receipt (maybe even write down a name of the business contact of the lunch or confirm the dollar amount for the parking that isn’t maybe that visible) an the receipt is there – accounted for!

Those are just few tips, and we didn’t even touch  how Hubdoc can push the PDF copies (backup) over to QBO or Xero.

The Hubdoc cost is just $20/month, but we gladly include a Hubdoc subscription for our Simple and Full level clients.

 

You Books LA Team

Why Xero?

By | Cloud Accounting Option and Reviews

Why Xero?

Xero is a new kid on the block in small business accounting, and it is becoming a staple in the industry fast! Accounting is essential for small businesses, but the past user interfaces has been less than desirable not to mention boring!

Co-founder and lead designer at Xero, Philip Fierlinger, stated that “Accounting used to be this thing that you did retroactively, “In the past, at the end of the year, your financial adviser could tell you ‘Oh man, things really went sour six months ago; This hindsight is nearly useless, but When you can do something about it as it’s happening–that’s the really important thing.”

Xero has revved up the user interface to make it easier and les monotonous. This is a web based “cloud” design that also keeps your data much safer from thieves and in the event of a fire or other natural disaster. Xero offers real time results, so you are not left wondering where you stand financially.

The web based approach that Xero utilizes allows the users that you have selected to view the same numbers all in real time. This means a lot less hassle. You set the privacy filters, so others only see what you want them too. Collaboration is easier, and it frees you up for other things too! This has made accounting easier and far more covenant.

A huge plus is that all of the bank accounts are viewable in one place! Not only your bank accounts, but your credit card balances too! This may seem like a simple change, but to anyone who has ever worked with the old desktop software knows this is a huge benefit.

You can now take pictures of your receipts and file them as expenses immediately. Invoices are also now able to be sent straight away. This amazing cloud software is working with map integration, so it knows the clients address so you do not have to hunt that information down. It makes contacting those who owe you money a heck of a lot easier, and it helps to prevent people from giving you false contact information too.

Like Co-Founder of Xero, Fierlinger, says “it’s all about cash flow.”

Security is top notch with Xero. Testing has been done to make sure that you information is never compromised. Everything is safely stored to the cloud, and only people with your log in information can access it. Again, you adjust user’s settings according to what you want them to be able to see. So this is customizable to meet your needs as a business owner.

The dash board id amazing, the entire platform is so user friendly and the real time collaboration beats Xero’s competitors hands down. Reporting is accurate, in real time and thorough. You simply cannot imagine the time this will save you to focus on aspects concerning your business.

Xero has also focused on being compatible with a number of different business software programs. You will not run into the compatibility issues that you have in the past with Xero, because it is user and program friendly. It is also leaning towards a more mobile friendly interface.

Trying Xero for your small business accounting needs just makes sense, and when you think about the affordability it is the best and only choice!

And here is one important detail. Xero and QBO are both improving daily, mostly because they both listen to the consumers and are working very hard to have you or gain you as a fan and a client. The competition is very healthy, but the clear winner is YOU!

 

 

Cloud Accounting with Xero and QuickBooks Online

By | Cloud Accounting Option and Reviews

Cloud Accounting with Xero and QBO (QuickBooks Online) 

If you have been struggling with balance in your business then maybe cloud accounting software is right for you.

Using accounting software should not be a dreaded chore. In the past it has not been uncommon to find yourself frustrated and dealing with a tedious issue within your accounting software. With cloud accounting software it is far less hassle and a lot easier to use. Your business runs faster, and your days go a lot smoother too.

This is software that is meant to simplify your life while amplifying your business. When you work with the cloud it is offering you a more comprehensive view of all of your finances. Cloud accounting software offers you a better understanding of where you are at financially, as well as what is working and what isn’t. Ultimately, it offers you far better communications with the rest of your team.

The crazy thing is that though small business seems to have been the ones needing comprehensive cloud software the most, it was unavailable. Not anymore. Xero and QuickBooks Online work wonderfully for small businesses.

Please note that QuickBooks online is not the same as QuickBooks Desktop. 

Cloud accounting software is not like the desktop programs that literally sucked your energy and time from the workday. Cloud accounting software makes it all far more effortless saving not only frustration, but also saving you money and time.

Take internet banking for an example; each time that you remotely connect to the data you are in fact using a cloud. It is so simple you do not even think about it, and it is so dependable that you know at the click of the button the information you are looking for or commend you need to execute will be done. Then you move on about your day. All of the complication is removed and you have peace of mind. That is much the same concept as QBO and Xero. Hassle free peace of mind that is what you have with the cloud.

Security, Security, Security! 

You do not have to worry about your information being compromised. The security within the cloud is top notch. Your data is safely stored, and there are layers of security in place protecting it. Unless someone has your log in information this information is 100% safe. Nothing is stored on your hard drive, so it is impossible to access your date for someone without the information to do so.

If there is a fire or some natural disaster all won’t be lost as it would being stored on your desk top. There is no downtime. All of your information will be neatly and accurately stored in the cloud for the next time you need to access it from your mobile device or computer. All you need is an internet connection and you are good to go.

Another nice feature is that you can control what other users see. Once you approve another user you get to set the privacy levels. That is added peace of mind for many small business owners who would not otherwise be able to allow access to the accounting platforms. Now these owners can get the help they need with accounting so that they can attend to the things that make their days more productive.

This software offers you flexibility, and it is always in real time. Updates are done a lot faster, and you are able to do more remotely hence freeing up your time.

Both Xero and QBO are great for small businesses. Both have several different size and feature variations so that you can customize your cloud accounting to your business’s needs. Both are relatively inexpensive and very dependable.

Your business can work faster and smarter with the utilization of cloud accounting software. When everything is considered it is an investment that just makes sense.