Invoicing is difficult and mistakes happen every so often. On rare occasions, these mistakes slip through and become a problem, especially if they build up. We all know how to stop these things from happening, but if you don’t, you can find in-depth blogs here. So then, how do we fix it using invoice reconciliation and when it does happen?
What is invoice reconciliation
Invoice reconciliation is the process of matching invoices with their bank statement counterparts to ensure that all accounts are correct and in order. It’s useful as, without interference, this is a certain way to ensure that all accounts check out.
What to be wary of
In the UK, 67% of office workers admit to stealing from their workplace, adding up to a massive £193 million cost for businesses. Knowing this, it should be no surprise that fraud is a possibility when it comes to invoice reconciliation. We also have a blog on invoice fraud if you are interested, you can find it here.
You are doing this process in the hopes of avoiding errors with the overall business cash flow. The last thing you want is a mistake on the check, as it would require a repeat of the whole process.
Part 1: Organisation
Start the process by organising how you want to enact it. Before anything, start by putting all invoices into order according to the date and time they were made. This should make the invoices match the bank statements in order.
Once you do this, you can then sort invoices by company whilst maintaining that order. This enables the creation of a simple process with little room for error.
Furthermore, in organising like this, you can start to have a dedicated invoice reconciliation period. Once everything is sorted by time, you can start to look at monthly periods together, or you can decide to look through the records of a single company all at once.
Part 2: Checking
Begin with invoices that haven’t been paid as they have a direct negative impact on cash flow. Always be certain to mark invoices that haven’t been paid clearly and follow them up after so you do not interrupt the process.
After that, move onto invoices that haven’t been paid in full, followed by invoices the business has yet to pay. Finally, finish with any miscellaneous invoices that might have been included.
Part 3: Double-check
When looking over accounts and seeing that money is missing, it’s easy to want to chase it up immediately. Before doing so, always double-check that you are correct in saying the funds are missing. Being too hasty can easily ruin business relationships.
Part 4: Fix the accounts
Finally, after sorting things out and checking them twice, you can start to contact the businesses or clients about the invoices. Be sure to only reintroduce the invoices to the organisation once they have been finalised for tax purposes.