It’s summer! Perhaps by now your kids are out of school and you are enjoying the weather together or maybe you are planning a fun vacation. We hope you are!

Earlier we talked about ways that the cloud can help you enjoy your summer and today we would like to add to that topic by discussing how automation can help you get the most out of your summer. 

What’s the difference between automation and the cloud

We wrote a blog post on how you can get the most out of summer by using the cloud. But you might be asking so what’s so different between the cloud and automation? Well, that’s a good question!

The cloud makes automation possible, but when we talk about the cloud we are usually talking about apps and how you are able to access your information as long as you have an internet connection. However, when we talk about automation, we are usually referring to certain things that you can set up so that they happen automatically. We really like automation around here!  You may want to check out these past blogs on repeating invoices, and default settings, and repeating journal entries.

Social media

Social media is an easy thing to automate and it’s a good place to start if you are new to this automation thing! One easy way to automate social media is to use apps such as HootSuite to schedule your Tweets or other social media posts. You can schedule quite a bit at once.  This means that you don’t have to worry about posting things a few times every day!

Also, you can schedule your blog posts to post at a future day and time. That way posts can go out when you want them to. For instance, in WordPress, you can choose to either publish immediately or to schedule your blog post to publish at a future day and time. This is handy to use.

Scheduling your posts and social media means that there is no rushing around trying getting it done at the last minute.  It also helps take the load off of keeping up with your social media.

Accounting

When it comes to your bookkeeping or accounting of your business, there are some secrets to automating that can help you so you don’t have to work the whole summer away! One suggestion is to use the repeating invoices feature within Xero. We wrote an article on how to get the most out of this feature. 

You can also set up so that your customers pay you automatically. Just think of this: at a certain time each month, your customer’s payment method on file will be charged and you will get paid! No more having to wait to receive the payment or having to go bring your client payments by check to the bank. That’s a win. 

Have you thought about doing automatic bill pay? That’s a good way to make sure all your bills get paid during the summer while you are off enjoying yourself. Of course, you can use a bill payment service like Bill.com or Plooto, but even if you do not use a bill payment service, most banks allow you to do bill pay through their bank portal website. You can record the future payments in Xero by entering the future date that they are scheduled to occur.  This also allows you to see a running total of your bank balance with those payments factored in. Pretty neat! 

Did you know that you can also automate your payroll? For instance, Gusto offers an “autopilot” function that you can use if you have salaried employees.  Gusto will automatically generate the payroll including direct deposits for each scheduled pay date. This is nice for when you know that running payroll will fall at a time that you will be away from the office. All you have to do is make sure that you have enough money in your bank account to pay them! If you have hourly employees, you could schedule a future dated payroll for when you are gone based on your employees scheduled hours or estimated hours to ensure that your employees will still be paid even if you are out of the office.

There are many different ways to automate your summer and have more time for fun. One of the many perks of working in the cloud and working with a cloud accounting software platform like Xero is that there are so many ways to help you work smarter, not harder. So do that this summer and get out and enjoy your life too! It’s all about work-life balance.