THE BOOKS Virtual Accounting 101
Steps in Detail
Book a Free Consultation
What gets scheduled, gets accomplished. To get things started, schedule a Free 20 Minute Zoom meeting with us. Add the event to your calendar. Feel free to forward the invite or Zoom link to your assistant or business partner if you want them to join as well.
After booking your consultation you will be directed to our questionnaire form. This questionnaire will gather more information about your business, goals, and current challenges. We will review this information before and during your consultation to get a better idea as to how we can help.
Free Zoom Consultation
During your free consultation, we'll share more about our team and how we can help. This will also be a chance for us to learn the ins and outs of your business and discuss what our working relationship might look like. Bring any partners, assistants, or team members to the meeting to help weigh in. We'll discuss where your business is now and what you are trying to accomplish so we know where to go from here.
Retainer for Discovery
If you want to move forward with the process, we'll send you a retainer invoice which you'll accept and pay online. This retains our services as we only consider taking on a small number of clients each period. This ensures we have the capacity to look after all our client's needs. During the discovery process, we will do a thorough job to determine the Scope of the work and map out a schedule for execution. The Discovery process allows us to collect the info we need in order to offer you the right plan for setup, cleanup, and/or ongoing services based on your specific needs. Skipping over this process tends to lead to misunderstandings. By getting expectations clarified at the start, we all win together. Part of the Discovery fee is then applied to any plan & ongoing service we recommend.
Invitation to Portal
After your retainer invoice is accepted and paid we will send you an invitation to our client portal. Inside the portal, you'll see some assigned To Do's. Some will include granting us access to your current financial systems, uploading information to the client portal, and answering additional questions. Work through the To Do's and ask questions along the way. Be sure to watch the video on our portal works so you'll get familiar with our process. We will communicate in the client portal and send the odd text message when we need a quick question answered. We will also set up a custom email address for your team to forward documents to us (HubDoc system). We realize that logging into a portal to upload a document to us can be less convenient than just forwarding it to us via email. So we give you both options to get us data.
One of your first To Do's is to invite us to your current system/s. Then we can take a peek under the hood of your accounting software, review your current processes, and uncover any outstanding issues. We will communicate in the portal and post questions and files to collaborate on. You'll receive a report from us documenting what we've found after a very thorough review. Our review process includes an analysis of your transaction history, income statement, balance sheet, settings, 3rd party apps and day-to-day accounting processes. During your Discovery we'll ask you to book 3 x Zoom meetings for us to connect and go deeper into all aspects of your business. In the 3rd and final meeting, we'll review the Strategy Plan we've put together and walk you through the scope.
Strategy Plan Meeting
Your final Discovery meeting will be the Strategy Plan review meeting. In this meeting, we'll review the customized quote and schedule we've made with milestones that address all of your accounting project needs. This can include any cleanup work, software setups and systems development projects as well as ongoing bookkeeping and accounting services. The cost to do your initial set up or clean up will be set as a one-time fee, but can be further discounted if you choose to purchase ongoing services. Ongoing services are offered at a fixed fee so you won't get surprise bills. This helps with budgeting and cost control.
Implementation, let's go!
Once you've approved the scope of work and signed our engagement agreement, we're ready to get started! Our team will get going on your project right away and post updates in the portal. At this point we will really step in to take over the reins of your project. We'll work closely with you and your team to get things set up in the background so you can stay focused on running your business.
Question: How do I send in my information before, during, and after I sign up?
You'll be given 3 ways to securely send us information.
1) 🔗 You can upload files to us anytime using our secure share link here. This link is on our website and in our email signatures for your convenience.
2) 💻 Once you accept an agreement and become a client, you can then upload information and communicate with us via the secure client portal. The invite to this system is sent 1 to 2 business days after you sign up for service (Retainer for Discovery).
3) 📧 You'll be given a custom email forwarding address that you can use to securely forward us receipts, bills, invoices, insurance paperwork, statements, questions, random tax letters, or whatever you think might be relevant for us to see. You can do this right from your email when you're a client.
We get it, sometimes you just want to delegate something by forwarding it straight from your email without having to go login into a portal or download and upload things to a link.
The custom email address we'll give you during onboarding is gonna make that possible, and make your life a lot easier.
Send it and forget it. We'll follow up with you later in the portal once we review the files.
How it Works After Set Up
Typically 90 days after your Discovery (and subsequent project plan) your financials will be caught up to date. Sometimes this goes much faster if we get everything we need right away. Once you're up to date, this is where things fall into a regular routine, and you really start getting your time back along with regular insights to better drive your business forward.
Depending on the frequency of service you're signed up for, we'll complete your bookkeeping and post your financial reports on that regular cadence so you don't have to. The more often we're contracted to do the work, the faster and better results you'll achieve.
Your responsibilities at this stage become a lot easier.
At this point your job boils down to just two main things:
1) Ensuring that you've sent us (or granted us access to) what we need as fast as possible
2) Booking & Attending your financial meetings
Upload & Forward Information
You'll upload or forward your financial information to us as often as you can.
This includes bills, receipts, customer invoices, bank statement, loan documents, expense reports for reimbursement, payroll hours, etc. You'll be given 3 ways to get us this information:
1) Forward via custom email address
2) Upload to the portal via the To Do's, Message Posts, or Secure Share
We'll assign some To Do's to you and your team in the portal when more feedback is needed. Some to do's will include reviewing your posted financials. Some will include granting to us more access to any new accounts you've opened so we can get what we need.
Live Financial Review
If you are working with us Weekly or Daily we'll have these meeting each week to review things like bills to pay, payroll, customer invoices, Profit & Loss, Chart of Accounts updates, KPI's, targets, and other open items. Daily clents will get the benefit of cashflow reporting as well.
Monthly clients will meet with us Monthly to go over the numbers from the month before. This includes a review of the companies Ledger of Transactions including Uncategorized ones to identify, the Profit and Loss, Bank registers, and Balance Sheet accounts to note. A monthly review ensures your are prepard for tax planning and are giving your business the basic financial oversight it deserves.
Books Done for You
Before we post the transactions that come in from your bank feeds in QuickBooks, we first look over and post anything that you forwarded to us or uploaded to the client portal. Armed with your source documents and feedback, we'll then be sure your transactions are posted as best we can in QuickBooks.
If you send us your receipts after we've done the bank feed matching and postings then we will do our best to attach whatever comes in later to what we've posted already. In these cases, there may be more questions for you.
Ideally, we want you to send us all your paperwork in real-time as best you can. Even if we don't get to your books until month end, you still want to learn the habit of sending in your paperwork as it is happening just like having an in house person in your office.
Depending on your frequency of service we will post and/or email your drafted financial reports. All monthly report are posted to the client portal where you can view, download, and provide feedback on the numbers. Once you see your reports be sure to book a meeting with us to review them.
Back Office Support
Our Platinum Daily clients get the further benefit of more operational support. This includes more intricate assistance and involvement in Accounts Payable and Receivable functions. Our back-office support team also assists with additional reporting requirements you may have. It's like have an extra admin and opts team at your service, fully overseen by our managers and Fractional CFO's.
Answer any questions we have. We'll send requests via the portal either in To Do's, Message Posts, or via SMS text messages.. The faster and more detailed your response, the sooner we can complete posting all your transactions, properly. Sometimes we need to clarify transactions especially if the source documents (paperwork and receipts) are missing or come to us after we've done the bookkeeping.
Book Financial Meetings
You'll book your re-occuring and one off meetings with us to review your drafted financials and go over any needed updates or requested changes. Daily & Weekly clients will book re-occuring weekly meetings. Monthly clients will book a re-occuring monthly meeting and can also book one more one off meeting later in the month to follow up on open issues.
KPI's & CashFlow
Platinum Daily Clients will also get the benefit from our Fractional CFO services in order to report on Key Preformance Indicators in your business. Because of our teams daily involvement in keeping your numbers up to date, our CFO services are also able to be realtime. This means they are much more specfic to your individual company needs TODAY, not last month when you needed this advice. This is the white glove support and service that only comes from the daily efforts of a CFO and backoffice bookkeeping team that is looking after your best interests as if your company was our own.