Automated Bookkeeping for Pubs

Automating your bookkeeping not only saves you time & money, but also gives you an up to date and accurate view of how your pub or group is performing. This article explains how to get started.

Running a pub is already more than a full time job, so many publicans understandably pass the task of bookkeeping onto a professional bookkeeper or accountant. Whilst this does push aside a painful activity it can often mean high accountancy fees and poor visibility of how your pub is performing.

Automating the bookkeeping process can dramatically cut your fees and provide you with an accurate, up to the minute view of the profitability of your bar. This can give you confidence that your business is on track, and alert you more quickly to issues that need attention or potential improvements that could increase your profitability.

Here’s what you will need.


A cloud accounting package

Xero cloud accounting package on iPad

You will need a cloud accounting package that has the ability to integrate with other apps. Xero and Quickbooks are two popular options. Both have the ability to integrate with other applications that will allow you to automate your bookkeeping.

If you don’t already use a cloud accounting package you may want to see if your accountant has experience in any. If you already have an EPOS that you don’t want to change then you will also need to check which packages it can integrate with.


A compatible EPOS system

Man checking accounts next to EPOS

You will need a pub EPOS system that integrates with your chosen accounting package. BarTab EPOS integrates with both Xero and Quickbooks.

The integration should cover sending your sales to your accounting package, ideally each day.

Cash, card and any other payment types you accept can also be posted automatically. Ideally these should be based on the actual payments you received (what you enter at cash up) rather than what was keyed through the till. This way any cash variances are accounted for and tracked in your accounts package and you won’t have a nasty shock at the end of the year.

If you pay for any purchases using cash from your tills or safe you ideally want your epos to post these as well. 

A bookkeeping add-on

You now need a way to get the rest of your purchases into your accounting package. For this you will need a bookkeeping add-on for your accounts package, like Receipt Bank.

These add-ons will read invoices and automatically extract the key data from them (supplier, date, amounts etc.), and send them into your accounts package. Once you set the correct account for a supplier on one invoice it will also allocate future invoices to the same account.

You can ask suppliers to email a pre-defined email address and their invoices then go straight into Receipt Bank, where they can be reviewed and then pushed into your accounting package. 

Once in your accolunting package invoices can be reconciled against your bank statement in one click.


The benefits

From putting the above in place you can save a significant amount of time (or cost if you use a bookkeeper).

You will also be able to log into your accounts at any time and see exactly how your pub is performing. In a few clicks you can see your revenue, wage costs, gross profit margins, and net profit. 

If you would like to implement the above and need help, contact one of our team for further advice. We can also help put you in touch with an accountant or bookkeeper who can help.

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