Several years into my small business ownership I decided it is time to organize my finances. Before then I was basically working out of my personal checking account and winging it when it came to proper record keeping. As business started growing I had to make some decisions about how I was going to run the company. The accountant I was working with clearly felt beleaguered by the number of missing check stubs, receipts and incomplete transaction records. He recommended that I move on to business checks in the proper business checks binder.
He showed me his set up and I was impressed. The binder was meant to keep manual business checks in order and have about 500 pages. The style of checks he used was a Three-On-A-Page style that actually looked professional. I immediately called my bank and made arrangements to set up the account. What I didn’t know at the time and how much my bank was going to gouge me for the service.
Every year since then I made sure that I have my own official looking business checks binder. These seven ring binders are used exclusively with business-size checks not the personal check style. You’ll usually find them organizing the three on one page checks. That format allows for easy viewing, easy record-keeping as well as efficient storage. They’re good for general disbursement checks, payroll checks or multipurpose voucher checks.
One of the things I realized when I matured into my business was that everything I did was connected to how the business was perceived. How I presented myself and the tools that I used was a reflection of my business. When I began to treat my administrative duties with that same level of commitment I realized that getting and staying organized financially was just as, or almost as important as my sales.
My personal preference is for The-Three-On-One page checks. I can open my binder begin making payment entries and log in a record of each with no problem. As mentioned above you can get different styles for different purposes. Some manufacturers even make checks for left-handed customers.
There are many different options available now. The seven ring business checks binder is a very popular format for small businesses and is frequently recommended by accountants. I still haven’t found one in an office supply store. They are invaluable to keep my business checks and deposit slips organized. It is a deterrent to coffee stains and juice spills around here.
You’ll recognize them by the D rings that makes it easy to flip through the pages. When you’re running out of checks you might be tempted to remove the stubs and reuse the binder for a fresh set. I found it much more convenient to simply order my business Kit from the vendor complete with a new binder. I then label the old binder with the checks series and store it for record keeping purposes. It’s a simple and efficient way of tracking and cross referencing.
I’ve always had organizational issues keeping track of checkbook transactions when things get busy. For years I would drive my accountant crazy because it took me four ever to retrace my steps or find the various pieces of papers on which I hastily wrote my transaction notes. When I got my first business checkbook folder that came with an additional book called the register.
My new accountant sat me down and demonstrated to me the proper procedure for filling out my transaction records. He explained that business check registers allow me to keep track of my checking account balance. Rather than backtracking to figure out where the money was spent, the simple layout allowed me to jot down the essentials quickly and easily.
I use the Three-On-A-Page format for my business checks and my registers allow them for a total of 480 entries. It is easy to use and guides me through the process of finding my accurate account balance quickly.
There are registers out there that are essentially spreadsheets. You fire up the computer in order to input the information and the tally is automatically as you go. If you find it more comforting to have it in black and white, this method requires no electricity. You can always order extra registers when you get your business checks as well.
Even in this era of digital communications, there are still a lot of people who prefer to enter their information by hand. The act of record-keeping somehow keeps them sane and in control of their situation. Business check registers offer a solid method of keeping track of checks written, bank balances and detail expenses. I’ve met quite a few individuals who then place their registers in attractive leather binders for storage on shelves. They can track all their expenditures back 10 years without ever turning on a computer.
So although the trend is moving toward computer programs like QuickBooks and MYOB, hundreds of thousands of businesses still provide solid records of information regarding their financial transactions on paper. Of course, even with the billions of dollars of transactions each year that occur in small and midsized businesses, the simple check remains a dominant force for financial transactions.
Men and women still write checks and send them off in the mail. Many businesses still prefer to keep manual records of their cash flow and expenses. They use simple business check registers to get the job done. There are others who do both; information is routinely entered into the check register throughout the week and everything is handed off to the bookkeeper. The computerized records are available if needed but the business owners have the material on hand for personal review.
There is nothing wrong with using either one or both methods in business. It is simply a matter of preference on their part. To purchase business check registers, go to your online printing vendor and scroll through to the business checks category. You will be able to find it there.