The Weight of Data Entry for Small Accounting Practices

With the changing landscape of the accounting industry, Personable Inc. set out to better understand the weight of data entry for today’s sole practitioners and small accounting practices. In our 2017 survey, respondents reveal that they continue to be plagued by manual data entry tasks in a technological world. The large majority of survey recipients employ 1 – 5 staff members and span from Bookkeepers, ProAdvisors, Accountants and CPAs.

Accountants are still manually entering large amounts of data (even in a tech-dominated world).

Eighty-five percent of those surveyed said each staff member in their office services up to 25 active clients each month. And nearly half of those surveyed enter 101 – 250 transactions per client per month. That means a single accounting professional enters up to 6,250 transactions a month.

But the most alarming insights reveal that 53% of respondents still manually enter data and 21% has staff manually enter data. Thirty-eight percent say that half of their time is dedicated to manually entering data.

Clients deliver almost as many paper documents as they do electronic documents.

While the majority of data entry stems from bank and credit card statements (89%) – invoices (75%), receipts (72%), bills (68%) and checks (68%) do not fall far behind. The deliverable of such documents is however a bit more surprising. Respondents indicate that 79% of documents are delivered electronically from clients; however, another 75% of documents are delivered in a paper format.

Accountants are not only plagued by outdated time consuming tasks like manual data entry, their clients contribute to the added pressures of manual tasks – continuing to send outdated file formats like paper documents.

Accounting professionals need more time to complete work related tasks.

When asked, “What is the limiting factor of your success?” 76% of respondents said, “Not enough available time,” while another 24% report “not enough available tech solutions.”

Data entry automation comes with added benefits.

According to those surveyed, data entry automation yields increased benefits for many areas of their business. Seventy-eight percent of respondents think that automating data entry tasks will “provide better service to existing clients” and 67% think that it will increase profit margin. Sixty-five percent would “spend more time acquiring more clients” and half of respondents would have “more job satisfaction.” Thirty-five percent of survey respondents even think that data entry automation can provide overall “better health.”

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Data entry automation is the first step to modernizing your small accounting practice and has proven to save 90% more time in the every day workflow. For more information on how you can automate mundane data entry tasks, request a free online ScanWriter demo.

Do you agree with the findings from our survey? How else do you think small accounting practices can modernize their business for better time savings and increased revenue?

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