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Bookkeeping and accounting basics
Business management
Continuing education for the business owner
Fraud & safeguarding company assets
Team dynamics
Managing business finances and expenses
Back to the complete listing of  business smart stops 
Smart stops for the individual
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Office Management
and Office procedures

Consider putting together an office procedure manual to ensure best business practices are followed.  If you find a useful policy in this website, highlight and copy by using Ctrl + C then paste into your word document using
Ctrl + V   Top
Business owners toolkit Ready-to-use business tools to help you get the job done faster and easier, including: A definite must for all owners & bookkeepers, information about must do's and must nots! Take the time to look at everything but pay special attention to:
Business Finance
- Sample Collection Letters -(Compare to the collection letters in QuickBooks) Unsecured Promissory Note.
Compensation & Benefits- Overtime Guidance, Time off policies,  Simplified Employee Pensions, Time-off Policies,  Workers Comp Policies
Employee Management-  Employee Work Rules,  Long Distance Call Log, Non-compete Agreement, Sexual Harassment Policy, Smoking Policy
Firing & Termination Policy-  Termination Checklist
Starting Your Business  Business Selection , Start-up Checklist
Vehicle & Equipment- Equipment Inventory List  Top
Business Forms Get the legal ease that is right for your business at FindLegalForms.com        Top
Calculators- for any purpose Over 12,000 calculators  (free)      Top
Are you prepared for when disaster strikes? Its not just about backing up your data, what happens if a key employee passes away? What happens if a natural disaster (tornado) were to strike? Article on developing a disaster recovery plan will help you prepare your own plan.  Think about keeping a backup of your QuickBooks Offsite .  Speed up and maximize your loss recovery from the insurance company by  Reading the complete disaster recovery guide. ( nice  do's and don'ts list).  This is a .pdf file you will need adobe reader to view.  It is a 70 page document so it takes a minute to upload to the browser. Its worth being patient for.       Top
Dictionary and Thesaurus Webster online
Zip Codes Look up a zip code or check with the Post Office Top
Templates for Microsoft Office A great resource for ready to go word documents including resignation letter, employee reference letter, letters to customers describing problematic situations? Spend a few minutes surfing this Microsoft site, you will find solutions plus many handy templates including Excel & Access tools.  Top

Share your outlook folders
among co-workers

A great approach to improved communication!

improve communication among co-workersWorkgroupShare- a software for as low as $306 for 5 users  lets the people in your organization share their Outlook data, such as calendar, contact, task and notes information, without the expense or expertise required by Microsoft Exchange Server.
Learn More
Insurance American Express provides descriptions about various types of business insurance. MostChoice.com  is a place to learn about your business insurance choices and how to get the best values. Insurance information institute is a non-profit agency whose goal is to improve public understanding of insurance -- what it does and how it works. They answer over 50,000 questions per year about insurance.   

Are you new to health insurance shopping?  This site will provide information to help you to find out how to choose a health insurance plan that best meets your needs at the lowest possible cost.
 Top
Guide to Grammar and Style Miscellaneous notes of grammatical rules and explanations, comments on style, and suggestions on usage   Top
Paypal Easy to set-up, low fees, receive credit card payments and cash from your web customers  Top
E-Mail- read yours from any location Read your e-mail from any computer.  Don't let e-mail go unanswered, easily read e-mail from anywhere without any set-up or sign-up.  Top
Yellow pages Search for US business phone numbers  Top
White pages Find an email or telephone number of an individual  Top
Maps Get driving directions  Top
How long should you keep business records? The IRS says you must keep your records as long as they may be needed to prove the income or deductions on a tax return.  See our table  for length of time based on business status quo rather than on authority, so use your best judgment and consult with your CPA.  Top
Anti-Virus Software A sound office procedure from Dummies.com          Top
Other resources you may want to visit Human Resources
Payroll Taxes
Make PDF files for free Online conversions:
5 free documents from Adobe. Unlimited conversions under 500 KB files from BCL
Download PDF conversion software:
for a low cost simple alternative for $35  Win2pdf

Free all the time - requires downloading 2 files www.cutepdf.com
Computing tips for the office A collection of tips and links for the non-techy that will help you identify what you need to know to make you an valuable asset to any office
QuickBooks Office procedure tips Backup tips, filing tips, computing tips.
Collect more Accounts Receivable Start accepting credit cards.  Its cheaper than you think. If you use QuickBooks, the cost runs about 2.6-3%  and you do not need to purchase a terminal.  Sign up from this link and pay $60 less per year than signing up through your QuickBooks software.  Same great company, just a special offer!
Overtime compliance rules Who qualifies for paid overtime, who is exempt - new rules 8/2004
Payroll issues Everything about payroll

Business Management *

 
Management E-newsletters The Institute of Management and Administration publishes these free e-Newsletters to help you keep abreast of fast-moving changes in today's management practices. Top
Get Paid Fast using PayPal It is easy for your customers to pay you when you are a  Paypal merchant Paypal is a tool to receive  payment from  anyone with an email address. Common uses for Paypal: Pay for an auction item, Split a restaurant bill or rent, Pay for an online purchase (or send money to your family or friends), Pay bills online. Just enter the recipient's email address and the amount you wish to send. You can pay with a credit card or checking account. 
Consider using the add-in software from Big Red Consulting to import the Paypal transactions into QuickBooks Top
Lease vs Buy Understand what issues must be considered before making a decision. This site works for auto or equipment leases.  See tools and calculators when its time to do some number crunching.  
Step No. 1: Negotiate the Lowest Purchase Price on the Asset.
  Several dealers may have to be interviewed and quotes obtained to get the lowest price.
 Step No. 2: Notify the Dealer of Any Trade-in Asset. The trade-in value sought should be based on current market.
Step No. 3: Inform the Dealer of the Wish to Lease the AssetTop

Depreciation guidelines for vehicles used in business

Delegating to employees Quick tips to remember before passing on responsibility
Common management mistakes

Employee self-evaluation



Employee's can self evaluate and contribute their input to the annual review process by completing this questionnaire about performance, cost effectiveness, attitude, responsibility, ideas, image, teamwork, attendance and personal development:
Rate the quality of your work and the information that is produced?
Are you putting forth your best?
Do you carry out your job in a cost-effective manner?
Do you do all that you can to work smarter?
Do you attempt to be more productive with fewer errors?
Do you go all out  to complete job-functions in a timely manner?
Do you have a positive mindset toward personal, department, and company goals, and does it show in your actions, feelings, and thoughts?
Do you enjoy coming to work?
Are you thoughtful and considerate toward co-workers?
Do you work to encourage better attitudes?
Do you display company loyalty?
To what extent do you take responsibility for you job?
Do you take on challenge and look for additional responsibilities?
Do you work well on your own and under supervision?
To what extent have you offered original ideas and recommendations for improvement?
Do you recommend better ways of doing things?
How have you contributed to solving or preventing problems,  what do you do to try to avoid problems?
Do you keep an open line of communication?
To what extent have you displayed a high-quality image in my appearance, language, personal hygiene, and working environment?
How do you rate your contribution to groups/company performance?
Are you aware of department goals?
Do you add value to your team and communicate with team members effectively?
To what extent do you keep others informed to prevent problems from occurring?
Do you promote lines of communication between accounting and other departments?
Do you share information?
Do you speak up at meetings and let your opinions be known?
How willingly do you jump in to share the responsibility of getting the work done?
Do you voluntarily assist others to achieve results?
Do you complete work accurately and thoroughly and work toward a smooth flow of information throughout the company?
Are you present and on time for work?
Does your attitude show you recognize that your absence or tardiness causes inconvenience and hardship for co-workers?
Do you take classes to expand your knowledge?
Do you improve your  job performance by applying what I have learned?
Do you seek out information about our industry?

Continuing Education for the business owner/ manager.

Learn what works for others Articles about running a business written by successful business owners. Top
CIO.com Recommendations, suggestions, information to make a manager harness the intellectual assets the business produces. including Daily News , Discussion Forums, Events Calendar, Exec. Summaries, Metrics, Reading Room, Research Centers, Budgeting,  CIO Executive, CRM, Cyber Behavior, Data Storage/Mining, E-Business, Emerging Tech, ERP, Future CIO, Globalization, Gov't & IT Policy, Infrastructure, Intranet/Extranet, IT Professional, IT Value, Knowledge Mgmt, Leadership & Mgmt, Learning, Legal, Outsourcing, Security & Privacy, Staffing & Retention, Supply Chain Mgmt, Web Professional, Wireless
Knowledge Management Knowledge Management Magazine
Knowledge Management World
Presentation Resources Alynn & Bacon Public Speaking Website.
Presentations Online
The Negotiation Academy Learn how to become successful at negotiation.

Bookkeeping and Accounting Basics

Business terms and what they mean to you QuickMBA is an online knowledge resource for business administration. Our goal is to help you to quickly find the business knowledge you need, when you need it, wherever you may be. Offers short essays on subjects such as accounting, finance, business law, marketing  management & strategy
Accounting Terms, accounting dictionary , accounting glossary Top
Understanding why business experiences
cash gaps when business is growing
A very simple graphic that explains why your business is growing and you are still short on cash. Top
Accounting Methods Cash or Accrual - which to choose
Accounting Books QuickBooks Training Guides
Journal Entries and accounting basics What do I Debit and what do I Credit? What is a balance sheet. What are chart of accounts.
Free Bookkeeping test American institute of Professional Bookkeepers
   

Fraud & safeguarding company assets

AICPA American Institute of Certified Public Accounts has begun developing a section of their website dedicated to fraud articles.  Bookmark this page to keep abreast of new ideas in internal controls       Top
Internal controls A few summary procedures you can do to protect your company against internal theft
Small Business Internal Controls More detailed view of internal controls. Includes a quiz  to see if you are vulnerable to fraud and theft.  At the website, scroll down to the Fraud article.
Association of fraud examiners ACFE Fraud Prevention Checkup  Top
Copywriting Basics The U.S. Copyright Office, Library of Congress, offers the information about copywriting.  It covers the basics as what works are and aren't protected, how to secure a copyright, the position of the notice and registration procedures.

Team Dynamics

 
Building Dynamic Groups Striving for excellence in building or enhancing the groups you work with to help them function in a dynamic, viable, cutting-edge manner.  This is a word document that requires you to open in word or save to your hard drive.  Top
Personalities tests Learn more about yourself and coworkers  Top

Managing business finances and  expenses

Financial Management American Express Open small business network has published some well written, brief articles for business owners to help them gain a greater understanding of cash flow management,  interpreting financials and more
Employee Business expenses
 

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners,  claims corporate fraud represents a growing cost and is up 50% in the period from 1996 to 2002. They also claims that expense reporting fraud is now 12% of all corporate fraud cases, up from 7% in 1996.
Put procedures in place that will discourage employees  and control costs. Establish spending Limits and distribute to the employees. Spending limits are the maximum travel expense amounts the company will reimburse. Set up a policy not to reimburse expenses in excess of these limits. A disadvantage is the tendency for employees to spend the maximum amount allowed therefore the reports should be monitored. Set a separate limit for each type of expense (meal, lodging, miscellaneous) and geographic area  The company should have a policy manual that describes what expenses will not be reimbursed. Examples of items to include in this policy may be expenses such as:

  • Mini-bar snacks and liquor.
  • In-room movies.
  • Valet service because someone forgot to do it at home.
  • Baby-sitting or child care while away from home.
  • Elegant livery services.
  • 50-yard-line seats.
Search for ways that will reduce time spent completing expense reports because employees generally do their expense reports on company time.  On-line software is becoming very cost efficient and provides a means to import data in the form that your accounting software requires. It also will limit the type of expenses that are allowable as reimbursable expenses.

Control Telephone expenses:  Have your  long distance carrier to require account codes.  An employee enter an account code before dialing to assign that call to the employee.  The telephone companies bill would list each code and calls placed

With a validated codes, your company can provide the telephone company with a list of account codes and authorized names. The call will not be placed unless a valid account is entered.  This service is provided at a fee by the phone company.
With unvalidated codes, the company does not provide the phone company with any account codes.  The call will be placed without a code.  But assigning each employee an account code and requiring employees to enter them may be all  that is necessary.  The phone bill will sort the calls by account code for no additional fee. 
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