Saving Time with Technology, Receipt Management

Saving receipts is one of those pesky little requirements.  The easier we can do it the better!  The problem is that many of the ‘easy ways’, like simply keeping your receipts, don’t actually preserve the receipts.  This means that if the IRS ever comes sniffing around and wants proof that certain expenses were what you claim they were, the proof has literally evaporated right off the page!

Just recently, I found a McDonald’s receipt from a weekend that my cousin spent with me a year ago [I know this because I don’t go to McDonald’s unless I am with a kid].  I couldn’t tell you what we ate or how much it cost, because the register ink has long since disappeared off of the receipt. But I could tell you that we went to McDonald’s because the yellow arches were still there! This is fine for a receipt that was not being saved to stay in compliance with the IRS, but for a business receipt, how do we keep this from happening – without spending hours and hours scanning in receipts or wasting money and trees making copies of them?

Scanning Applications

There are myriad options available when it comes to scanning applications.  Some will link directly with various accounting systems so that you can attach a PDF copy of a receipt to the transaction that it supports, while others are just basic scanners that allow you to use the camera on a smart phone to scan in documents in a matter of seconds. This is a huge time saver because instead of standing by the scanner and trying to figure out how to best scan in the awkwardly long receipt, you just open the scanning app, frame the receipt with your camera and the app will filter out all images around the document you are scanning. For those who have used the feature, it is virtually the same concept as using a bank’s Mobile Remote Deposit option, which uses your phone’s camera to make a “copy” of the front and back of a check, and electronically transmits that image as a deposit to your business account.

This also makes sharing receipts/documents with others, especially your accountant, much easier. Sending a picture of something, while easy for you, can be difficult for the person receiving the information to work with.  Many of these applications even present you with the option of converting the images to either PDF or JPEG format directly from the app itself.

All-in-all these scanning apps are very versatile and can add a lot of value to your business, if of course used correctly and appropriately.  Oh, and did I mention that you can find many of these for free by searching ‘scanner’ in either the App Store or Google play?

Last but not least, please feel free to contact us for the list of our recommended apps and also if you are looking for one that links directly to your accounting software. All of us at Volpe Consulting and Accounting Services are always here to help you save time and your business to succeed.

Talk soon!

Chelsea Auton

The Volpe Consulting & Accounting Team

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