Online Accounting Software Small Business Accounting

What’s your Employee Doing with your Time: How to Prevent Time Theft

What’s your Employee Doing with your Time: How to Prevent Time Theft

As an employer, you expect your paid employees to work for their money. However, some workers take long personal time, some just make a habit of coming late to work while others spend a considerable amount of time on the internet. These are all typical forms of time theft: when employees do other things apart from their assigned tasks within working hours. As simple as it sounds, it is difficult to know if employees are engaged in the theft of time and it can have an adverse effect on the productivity of a business.

  • Set Rules

There are many ways to prevent time theft but the first step is to have some rules against it. One of the ways of involving in a time theft is by having someone else clock in or clock out on your behalf. This is known as buddy punching. It usually happens when a business is using a time sheet/card to clock in or out. To some employees, they are not committing any crime doing it and they consider it normal but it is time card fraud. If the company policy explicitly states the rules against time theft in their handbook with the punishment then the employees would do away with it.

  • Regularly Train your Employees on Time Management

Training of employees on time management is essential. It is perfectly normal for employees to have a friend or two in a company who they can talk to. In fact, a positive professional relationship at work is healthy for any business to grow. Nevertheless, employees who take too much personal time having a chit-chat with a friend is stealing the company’s time. There should be a regular training of employees on effective time management.

  • Automate Time and Attendance

It is easier to know when an employee is stealing a company’s time through time and attendance software. A small business with employees using biometric devices such as fingerprint and retinal scan to clock in is more likely to have accurate time record than the one using manual time sheet. This is because the biometric devices are automated which prevents time card fraud and makes it easy to import data directly into the payroll using online accounting software.

  • Follow Through on your Punishment and Reward

The company must follow through on employee’s discipline when they disregard time theft policy. It is important to set the rules but it would amount to nothing if the rules are not enforced. The punishment must be a warning, suspension, and termination in that order for perpetual time thieves. Reward employees who finish their tasks promptly and abide by the rules. You must also set a good example as the boss. If your employees see you using the internet for personal purposes during work hours or regularly come late to work, they would be inclined to do the same.

  • Give Breaks and Lead by Example.

Employees need a break occasionally to function effectively. Even machines need servicing and they are only humans. Allow your employees to have lunch breaks, pay for overtime works and make flexible work arrangement. Cut the amount of time spent in meetings, do not waste your employees’ time. More importantly, always ensure you keep your employees busy by assigning tasks to them and do not overburden them with tasks that are impossible to perform within given time.

Final Words….

Time theft is a serious crime, which says a lot about your management capacity and the general growth of your business. There are software to monitor what employees are doing like the web-based time sheet and internet security that prevent employees from slacking off and stealing your business’ time.


Online Accounting Software Small Business Accounting

Failure, Break-Even or Profits: How to Scale Through the Early Days as a Start-up

Failure, Break-Even or Profits: How to Scale Through the Early Days as a Start-up

As a start-up, the early days are nothing but a struggle. A start-up is like a toddler, unable to communicate but always making mistakes. The euphoria and excitement of starting a new business often overshadow the first year. By the second year, there are concerns when the expected profits are not coming as projected. Of course, the entirety of an entrepreneurial journey is full of storms but looking through your cloud accounting software for an inkling of profit is always saddening.  Just like many have done, you can swim through the storm by answering the following posers;

  1. How Healthy Is Your Work Environment?

You may overlook this as trivial, but it matters. Where you work affects your morale as a new start-up. It will determine whether you will be part of the one-third of businesses that don’t make it past the first year. If you already have employees, they will always be comparing the work environment to their comfort zone. The work environment is part of what makes start-up become fast growing.

  1. Who Are You Hiring?

As a start-up, you are characterized by limited resources. You don’t have any option than to hire the right people. There’s no need hiring for some position to save cost. For example, it’s cost-effective to rely on free accounting software for your finances. However, bad hiring decisions goes beyond the financial aspect of it. It is also psychological; it can affect the morale of the other good hires.

  1. What Are You Doing To Protect Your Company?

There’s a lot to be protected as a new business. As a startup, you don’t really have much in fixed assets, but your information is worth more than assets. You need to ensure your business data; client information and account is safe. In case you don’t know, 40% of businesses that experience data loss often fold up. We are talking about an established company, not to speak of a startup. Employ the best tools to protect your information and avoid hard copies of information. For example, you can use a cloud accounting software for your finances; it is usually encrypted and firewalled.

  1. What Are You Offering in Products and Services?

In 1985, Steve Jobs was relieved of his job at Apple, and the company went into oblivion until 1997 when Steve returned to Apple. The value you are creating as a product or a service is a determinant of the level of growth your start-up will experience. If your product is what the people want, you will survive the early days even without selling a single product.

  1. What’s Your Cash Flow Like?

You won’t be able to answer this question unless you are making use of an online bookkeeping software. Being a start-up, you don’t have the luxury of hiring an accountant to keep you abreast of your cash outflow and inflow. However, with an online accounting software, you will know where you stand as a start-up. This will help you know whether you are at a profit or running a loss.

Final Words…

Your survival as a start-up relies on being able to provide affirmative answers to these posers. Never be in haste to make a profit, focus more on the product and value you are offering.

Online Accounting Software

Tips For HR Managers: How are you Training Your New Recruits

Tips For HR Managers: How are you Training Your New Recruits

Without a practical training and onboarding programme in place, your new employees are bound to fail. The failure might not be immediate but in the future, as they are unaware of what your organization stands for and how you intend to achieve organizational goals. Your recruits can only perform at their best when you train them along the line of your objectives and goals as an organization. In reality, failure to understand the objectives often frustrate talents which leads to high employee turnover. It is important to state that training is not a one-time activity, it should feature prominently in organization activities.

At myBooks, we have an effective training programme. This has helped in the excellent development and functioning of our cloud accounting system, and we believe you can learn from our approach. Here are some tips that should be incorporated into your training programmes.

  • Have a Training Process in Place Before Hiring

Before searching for talents, put up a document that encapsulates the job description and requirements. This should include the skills and expertise the ideal candidate should possess. You should also include what the recruit should know immediately he/she joins the organization. This will help guide in identifying the modus operandi to be employed in onboarding talents.

  • Be Thorough with Your Recruitment Process

A proper recruitment process will help you hire the best man or woman for every role. Since you already have a training programme in place for the ideal candidate, settling for the wrong hire, will means the training programme will fail. It’s like searching for a candidate with Microsoft Excel and Programming skills, if you end up with one that can only write codes, then you need to train for Microsoft Excel which is not part of the training plan.

  • Skills Training Isn’t Enough, Include Organization Culture

Your organization has a culture which is a product of your philosophy, mission, and vision. This is part of the training your recruits should be exposed to. Training new talents only for skills will work in the short-term. In the coming years, skills training will not sustain the new talents; there will be a deviation from organization culture. This deviation will have an impact on the achievement of the organization objectives.

  • Training is Forever, Not Time Bound

Of course, the first few days, weeks and months of employment is indeed critical. However, training should not be limited to this period. It doesn’t tell well on the output of an organization when a recruit is expected to find their ways after integrating with the team. Ensure every new hire is mentored and reviewable milestones are set.

  • Make Training Enjoyable and Fun-Filled

Don’t paint a picture of boredom and gloom for your new hires through your training methods. The training process should be constructed in a way the recruits fall in love with organizational goals. At intervals introduce break and create activities that allow for socializing. Keep things interesting for them in the first few days, and they will come to work happily forever.

Online Accounting Software

The Role Artificial Intelligence Should Play in Your Search for Talents

The Role Artificial Intelligence Should Play in Your Search for Talents

The use of technology by recruiters started long before AI through the use of Applicant Tracking System (ATS). The technology is intended to make the jobs of recruiters easier, faster and better. The field of human resource is experiencing changes thanks to artificial intelligence. AI is already taking HR by storm with companies playing around the use of AI for employee onboarding, recruitment, identification of talent and training of talent. There are numerous data-driven tools at the disposal of HR teams of companies that are playing a huge role in attracting talents.

AI adoption by recruiters will eliminate the manual screening of resumes and other time-consuming activities. In the coming years, recruiters will be tasked to do more with lesser time and resources on their hands. This will necessitate a need to rely on AI in the performance of their duties. There are areas of recruitments where there are distinct input and output that can be automated via AI. The new technology is similar to cloud accounting software; it can streamline repetitive and voluminous tasks. Companies are turning to AI in their recruitment activities as it can identify the low-hanging applicants and recommend to decision makers.

Using AI by recruiters has its benefits. There are two significant benefits of AI to recruiters in the short-term and the firm in the long-term. Firstly, AI is known for improving quality of hires. With AI, HRs can process, collect and analyze applicant information for the specific job requirements. AI can easily carry out matching of applicant education, skills, experience, personality and expertise with the job description. When a company hires the right person for every role, there is an expected increase in productivity.

When there’s an improvement in job matching, low employee turnover is expected. So far, companies using AI has seen cost reduced by 75% and employee turnover reduced by 35%. In the recruitment process, manual screening of applicants consumes time the most. The task even becomes harder when a lion share of the applicants are unqualified; it becomes a tale of looking for a needle in the haystack. Through AI, recruiters can screen resumes, schedule interviews and assess the personality of the applicants.

Through AI, companies can identify and onboard the best talent before they move to competitors. So also, AI can help to assess the future of applicants for higher roles in the firm. AI is reducing human influence on the recruitment process. When humans are involved in recruitment, it will be affected by either conscious and unconscious bias. However, any form of biases isn’t good for any business, but AI does not create room for undue preferences.

Of course, with the current trends, AI and recruiting can work hand in hand. What doesn’t work hand is AI and the recruiters. In the future, AI will reduce to the barest minimum the impact of humans on the recruitment process. Recruiters are also worried about AI eating up their jobs, which is true.

Online Accounting Software

8 Pointers To Show That Your Plans Are not Rock Solid

8 Pointers To Show That Your Plans Are not Rock Solid

Without a plan in place, you’re hoping. It’s even worse when you have a plan that is bound to fail. That means you are not hoping but planning to fail. Investing ample amount of time in planning is worth it in the long run. It will save you the time you will waste on a failed project. How can you know if your plans are not rock solid? Here are eight pointers to be sure you are not on a goose chase;

  1. Unclear Objectives

A man without a clear vision piloting an airplane is bound to crash land sooner or later. Don’t put in place a long to-do list and tag it a plan. Rather than pondering on a long list of action plans, stick to a single or few ones. Know which of the strategy will give you the biggest bang for your bucks.

  1. Avoiding Challenges

Trying to maneuver your way around a challenge is the beginning of your failure. An African proverb says “he who runs from a fight today, lives to fight another day.” Why not fight the challenges today than wait for another day when it affects your plan.

  1. Prioritize Goals

Don’t let the most important of your goals compete with lesser tasks in your plan. Every healthy strategic plan is based on setting priorities. Let’s assume your plan is for the entire year, set out not more than three priorities. This will allow you focus on what’s important.

  1. Set Out an Organizational Calendar

Every plan must be time bound. This will help to track the level of progress on every plan. On the calendar, set out what is to be achieved on a weekly and monthly basis. A schedule is one of the tools every team needs to succeed on every plan. You can correct a plan through a calendar.

  1. Absence of Room For Adjustment and Flexibility

Regardless of how robust your plan may appear from the onset, leaving no room for fine tuning may lead to failure. In the process of executing a plan, the present condition might be different from what was envisaged. Therefore, create room for adjustment of the plans to ensure it aligns with the prevailing situation.

  1. Lack of Knowledge of Available Resources

In planning, creating a scenario of the available resources will lead to failure. Start from the financial resources, every member of the team must be aware of what is available to execute a plan. This can be through a cloud accounting software that is accessible to every member of the organization involved from planning to execution.

  1. Having the Wrong Leadership

A plan is as good as those involved in executing it. It’s usually tough arriving at the best hands and heads for a team but if a plan is to succeed, tough decisions have to be taken. The right leadership are those who understand the A-Z of the plan and are ready to invest their time and energy into it.

  1. Setting Unrealistic Goals

Not every plan is achievable. A plan that is bound for success needs to set goals that are achievable within a time frame. The feasibility of these goals should be determined by the leadership in consultation with the team involved. This will help to create a room for fine-tuning in consonance with the business environment

Online Accounting Software

Staying Ahead of Competitors: Pitching Your Unique Selling Points to Clients

Staying Ahead of Competitors: Pitching Your Unique Selling Points to Clients

Every successful business today is characterized by one important idea in it heart; a value proposition. Look at Google, Yahoo, myBooks, Microsoft, KFC, and many more, they all have a Unique Selling Point that makes them industry leaders. Except you find yourself as the only player in your industry, you need a strong, unique selling point to win over customers. As a business, you USP set you apart from the competition; it’s what makes you sought after by the clients of your competitors. As a new business, breaking into the market can only be possible with the existence of a unique selling point.

Don’t try to be everything to everyone; it’s the beginning of your failure as a business. It’s better to be known for one thing than to be unknown for many other things. As a business, your USP should encapsulate and provide answers to these questions;

  • What are you offering and what makes it different from existing products/services?
  • Who should be your customer and what can you do for them?
  • Lastly, what do you want to be known for in the market?

Your answers to these questions are your unique selling point. Whether as a new or existing business, the answers to these questions should be known and felt in your branding and marketing. With a unique selling point, standing out from the crowd is easy.

Of course, you would have done your research to arrive at a unique selling point. It should also be inclined towards how useful your product is to the clients. For example, you can show using a cloud accounting software, the cheaper cost of using your product or service. The most important task as far as your USP is concerned is communicating it to your prospective clients and customers. You may have a better value than the competition, but if clients are unaware of it, they will not know what you are offering.

There are steps to follow to pitch your unique selling points to clients based on the experience and practice of successful companies;

  1. Wow Your Ideal Customer

There’s always an ideal customer for every business. To be the best in your industry, identity your ideal customer and build your product to appeal to them. That’s not to say you should ostracize non-customers. For example, you can be like Abercombie and Fitch who think their ideal customer is the “cool, good-looking people.” Narrowing down to your ideal customers is effective, that’s not to say you should be rude to the others.

  1. Go Personal With Your Pitching

You need to cautious though but fusing a personality into your unique selling point is rewarding. Craft a personality that aligns with your product and services. When there’s a persona to your brand, it’s more relatable. Having a humanized approach to your unique selling point gives you an edge over.

  1. Do Something Others Cannot Imitate

People are always trying to replicate success. However, you can craft your unique selling point so that competitors cannot imitate it. Make it hard to duplicate, replicate and reproduced.

Don’t just start out without ironing out your unique selling point. It’s like putting yourself at risk, and your capital will bear the brunt.