Bank reconciliation is an important monthly task for any accounts department. It compares your general ledger against your bank statement to check for any irregularities or overcharges and provides businesses a good financial oversight from month to month.
An important function of the bank reconciliation statement is to look for any missing money, therefore it is essential that the duties of issuing payments and reconciliation are separated. Bank reconciliation statements should be audited in-house at least once a month and by an external auditor at least once a year.
If you are looking to audit in-house, then here is a simple 7-step guide to auditing your bank reconciliation statement:
- Gather your bank statement, general ledger and bank reconciliation documents for the month you wish to audit.
- Check the final figures on your reconciliation document against your bank statement for that account. The amounts should match.
- Check the final figures on your bank reconciliation document against your general ledger totals to ensure they both match.
- Find the difference in value between your bank statement ending balance and your general ledger total. The difference should be properly reflected in your bank statement.
- Match off transactions from your bank statement and general ledger account. Each transaction in one document should have a corresponding transaction in the other. It is always best to mark these off as you go to avoid confusion.
- Highlight any non-matching transactions between your general ledger and bank statement. These items are ‘reconciling’ items and should be accounted for in your bank reconciliation document with full reasons for the discrepancy. These items are usually the result of funds that have not yet cleared or cheques that are waiting to be cleared.
- Double-check that the difference between your bank statement and general ledger is properly accounted for in your bank reconciliation document.
As you can see from this guide, while bank statement reconciliation is essential to maintain good accounts it is also a fairly laborious task. As a small business, it may be a rather boring but still quite a quick task. However, as your business grows, the volume of transactions will increase dramatically. What may only take an hour or so to start with could end up taking you a few days and is liable to be riddled with errors.
The alternative to the tedious 7 step process is to automate the reconciliation process with purpose build software and go from what could take days into a task lasting mere hours.
Adra Match provides automatic account reconciliation software to small, medium or large enterprises. The advanced software does most of the work for you and gives you overview over open items through detailed reports. Discover more benefits of automatic account reconciliation in this free ebook.
We offer a cloud-based model for large and small businesses, as well as locally installed options for corporate organisations with policies of having software installed on local servers. Book a demo or get in touch to find out more.