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Anthony Tete


Top 8 Ways to Improve Cash Flow

By Resources

Top 8 Ways to Improve Cash Flow

Cash flow is the lifeblood of any organisation, and it can make or break a company.

However, increasing cash flow can be a challenging task, especially if you have limited resources. 

But don’t worry, you’re in safe hands. We’ve outlined the top 8 ways on how to improve cashflow, regardless of the size of your business. 

8 ways to improve cash flow

1. Do a deep dive into your expenditure

First things first, in order to improve cash flow and plan for the future of your company you need to know exactly how much money you’ve got coming into the business vs. how much you’re spending. 

Start by looking at your income:

Make a list of all your income streams from the previous year in order to detect peaks and seasonal trends (i.e. a boost around the holiday season). This will give you a better understanding of your customers’ spending patterns and which areas of your business are thriving.

Then look at your expenses:

Just like for your income, make a list of all the things you are spending money on such as: employee salaries; office rent; travel and accommodation for the sales team.

Now, for some of these expenses, like employee wages, there’s no wiggle room. But having a clearer picture of all your expenses will help determine where you can cut costs or look for more competitive deals.

Finally, compare the two: 

If you find that there are periods during the year when your expenses exceed your income, you can start to question why this is happening. 

2. Increase your prices

It might sound like something you should discuss with your senior management team first (and it definitely is). But even a slight increase to your prices, combined with a small reduction to your costs can go a long way. 
Ask yourself: would your clients care? Well, yes, they probably would care if they were told they had to pay more money. But would they care if prices suddenly went up by one or two percent? Probably not.

3. Send out your invoices ASAP

It’s a no brainer really, sending invoices out immediately helps expedite the payment process by encouraging clients to settle their debts promptly.

Make sure your invoices include:

  • Clear terms and conditions. 
  • The due date in bold at the top and on the payment slip. 
  • Instructions for accepted payment methods. 

By immediately sending out accurate, and easy to read invoices, you reduce the risk of late payments and improve cash flow for your business. 

4. Entice your clients to pay sooner

Everyone loves an incentive, and this one’s a win/win for both you and your clients: Offer discounts for early payment. 

Incentivising customers to pay sooner serves multiple benefits. It helps speed up cash flow, providing timely access to funds for both operations and growth. Additionally, it contributes to strengthening your business’s financial position. 

5. Concentrate on building customer loyalty

By focusing on building customer loyalty you can increase retention rates.  
You can also ensure more repeat business, maintain a steady cash flow, and turn loyal customers into brand advocates who attract new business. 

6. Invest in your company 

Investing in your own business is crucial for boosting skills, productivity, and overall promotion, which directly impacts cash flow.  
While there is an initial cost involved, such investments lead to streamlined operations and improved efficiency. Whether it’s upgrading skills, optimising workflows, or enhancing marketing strategies, the aim is to reduce costs and increase profits.  

7. Improve your inventory

You can increase cash flow by improving your inventory through regular checks to identify slow-moving items”. 
By selling these items at a discount or discontinuing them entirely you free up cash tied in inventory and prevent it from jeopardising your cash flow. 

8. Get rid of wasted expenses

Start by asking your employees for input and conduct audits to identify unnecessary costs.  
By identifying and cutting out these expenses, you’ll save money that can be redirected towards more productive areas of your business. This will ultimately improve cash flow.

Find more ways to improve cash flow with Capture Expense

We can help reduce your spend up to 44% by saving on costs; improving your spending habits and reducing your risk of expense fraud. 
Book a personalised demo today to see Capture Expense in action. 


Why is it important to improve cash flow?

By improving your cash flow, you can ensure that your business is here to stay.

You’ll be able to: 

  • Invest in new business ventures. 
  • Hire more employees.  
  • Plan for the future. 
  • Meet payroll. 
  • And more.

Are there different types of cash flow?

Yes, there are the three primary classifications of cash flow: 

  • Cash flow from operations (CFO) 
  • Cash flow from investing (CFI) 
  • Cash flow from financing (CFF)

These will all appear on the cash flow statement on your company’s financial statements. 

What Are Management Accounts? (And How to Prepare Them) 

By Resources

What Are Management Accounts? (And How to Prepare Them) 


Management accounts offer a window into your business’s financial status, aiding senior management in decision-making and implementation.

This practice holds significant value for all organisations—so regardless of your business size or industry, it facilitates comprehensive insights into past, present, and future financial standing across your entire business.

This article will provide you with an overview of how to prepare management accounts. 

First things first, exactly what are management accounts?

Management accounts, typically generated monthly or quarterly, provide a detailed overview of your company’s financial health. They include key components such as: 

  • A balance sheet. 
  • A cash flow statement. 
  • A brief report. 
  • A profit and loss account.

With accurate management reports, you can spot current business trends, address issues regularly, and track your business’s evolution.  

Although they are not a legal necessity and don’t need to be filed with HMRC, they will provide you with greater financial management than ever before and help your company expand.  

Why are management accounts important?

For any business aiming to grow and succeed, management accounts are essential.  
By keeping track of your income and spending regularly, you’ll gain valuable insights into your financial health and potential for growth.  
Continuous monitoring allows you to make informed decisions and adjust your strategies whenever necessary.  
Management accounts go beyond just looking at your bank balance – they take into account factors like upcoming expenses, revenue streams, and market conditions, giving you a full picture of your company’s finances.  
Quickly spotting sales trends helps you plan better and seize expansion opportunities, while understanding your profitability margins and trends enables you to make strategic decisions aimed at boosting your net profit.  
In short, management accounts provide you with the tools and information you need to thrive and succeed in today’s competitive business world.

How to prepare management accounts

Management accounts are most useful when they contain pertinent facts tailored to your business and are presented in an accessible format for colleagues throughout the company.

Here’s your step-by-step instructions on how to prepare management accounts: 

1. Gather data 

The cornerstone of management accounting rests on the quality and depth of your collected data. Without precise and pertinent data, any subsequent analysis and insights will be distorted.

You should consider:

Source identification: Determine your primary data sources, which may include accounting software, CRM systems, sales platforms, or manual records. Knowing where to extract data ensures crucial information isn’t overlooked.

Time period selection: Decide on the timeframe for which you’re preparing the management accounts. Whether it’s monthly, quarterly or annually, this will dictate the range of data you need to collect.

Data segregation: Categorise your data into sections. For financial data, this could mean segregating revenue, expenses, assets and liabilities. For operational data, segregate sales, production, inventory and customer feedback.

Automation tools: Explore tools and software for automating data gathering, saving time and reducing human error. Integrating different systems ensures seamless data flow and accuracy.

Data validation: Validate the gathered data for any anomalies, such as high expenses in a month or sudden sales spikes, to identify errors that need correction. 

2. Ensure accuracy

Ensuring data accuracy is essential. Inaccurate data can result in misguided decisions, potentially harming your business.

To ensure data accuracy you should employ: 

Cross-verification: Always verify the data collected by comparing it with external sources. For example, ensure that the bank balance in your accounting system matches actual bank statements. 

Reconciliation: Regularly reconcile accounts to identify and resolve any discrepancies. This includes verifying balances with HMRC, suppliers, and other stakeholders.

Audit trails: Maintain clear audit trails to ensure accuracy and trace any discrepancies back to their source. 

3. Produce financial statements

Financial statements form the foundation of management accounts, offering a comprehensive view of your company’s financial well-being.

You should draft a: 

Profit and loss report: This statement provides a comprehensive overview of the company’s revenue, expenses, and overall profitability within a defined period. Accurate categorisation of income and expenses is essential for understanding profit margins and operational efficiency.

Balance sheet: This document presents a snapshot of the company’s assets, liabilities, and equity at a specific moment in time. Regular updates and reviews of assets (such as inventory) and liabilities (like loans) are crucial to reflect the current state of the business accurately.

Cash flow statement: This statement offers insights into the company’s liquidity by illustrating cash inflows and outflows. It is essential for assessing the company’s ability to cover short-term liabilities and operational expenses.

4. Incorporate operational metrics

Operational metrics offer a detailed perspective on your business’s performance, enhancing the financial data.

You should consider:

Sales and production figures: Monitor monthly, quarterly, and yearly sales alongside production costs to assess efficiency and profitability.

Inventory levels: Track inventory levels to maintain optimal stock levels, minimising storage costs and ensuring timely deliveries.

Customer satisfaction metrics: Utilise tools such as Net Promoter Score (NPS) or customer satisfaction surveys to evaluate customer sentiments regarding your products or services, identifying areas for enhancement. 

5. Prepare an executive summary

An executive summary at the beginning of your management accounts can be very helpful. This section could highlight:

  • Key monthly data/figures. 
  • Notable changes or concerns. 
  • Net profit margins. 
  • Turnover ratios. 
  • A departmental overview. 

6. Analyse and interpret

When analysed and interpreted accurately, data becomes actionable insights.

Consider the following:

Trend analysis: Identify patterns in sales, expenses, and other key metrics. Recognising these trends early can help in capitalising on opportunities or mitigating risks.

Budget vs. actual: Compare forecasted budgets with actual figures to pinpoint overspending or areas of savings.

SWOT analysis: Conduct regular SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analyses to inform strategic decisions and identify growth opportunities or potential challenges. 

7. Share the insights

Communication is key. Sharing insights ensures that all your stakeholders are on the same page.

You should consider:

Regular updates: Conduct frequent meetings with key stakeholders to review findings from management accounts, promoting alignment and informed decision-making.

Visual representation: Utilise charts, graphs, and other visual aids to present data, enhancing comprehension of complex information.

Recommendations: Don’t just present the data. Offer recommendations based on the insights. This proactive approach can guide the business towards better decision-making. 


How often are management accounts prepared?

While there’s no fixed schedule for preparing management accounts, the common practice is to do so monthly or quarterly, allowing business owners to maintain regular oversight of their finances. 

Can management accounts help secure new funding?

Yes, management accounts are crucial for securing new funding. They give investors and lenders a clear view of the company’s financial health and potential for growth, building confidence in potential funders.

How are management accounts different from statutory accounts?

Statutory accounts are primarily used for external reporting and regulatory compliance, while management accounts are internally focused, providing guidance for strategy, assessing financial position, and monitoring progress.

Make better financial decisions with Capture Expense

Effortlessly track and report on all spend with our business expense tracker—giving you an instant detailed breakdown of spending by mileage, user, total expenditure, and more. Book a personalised demo today.


How can organisations reclaim VAT on fuel? 

By Resources

How can organisations reclaim VAT on fuel? 


Organisations in the UK can reclaim VAT on the fuel component of mileage expenses paid to individuals.  
However, navigating this process is complex and requires gathering specific evidence to meet HMRC requirements.  
In our blog, we’ve compiled all the necessary information on reclaiming VAT for fuel and petrol expenses during business trips, helping you choose the best approach for your organisation. 

Who is eligible to reclaim VAT on fuel? 

To reclaim VAT on business expenses, including fuel, you need to be a VAT-registered business.  
If your annual turnover is below £85,000, you can opt to register for VAT and claim back VAT on expenses. However, if your annual VAT taxable turnover exceeds £85,000, VAT registration is mandatory.  
It’s also worth noting that if you’re under the VAT Flat Rate Scheme, you can’t reclaim fuel expenses. 

How much VAT on fuel can you reclaim?

According to HMRC guidelines, you can reclaim 100% of the VAT on fuel used for business purposes.  
To comply with HMRC requirements, you must maintain precise mileage records and retain fuel receipts as evidence of expenses. 

How do you reclaim VAT on fuel usage? 

To reclaim VAT on fuel usage, ensure it’s used solely for business purposes (VAT can only be reclaimed on business-related expenses). 

However, as many small businesses and self-employed individuals use their vehicles for both business and personal purposes, this can complicate the process of reclaiming VAT on fuel.

There are two ways you can reclaim VAT on fuel:

  1. Reclaim all the VAT paid on fuel purchases and pay the appropriate fuel scale charge for your vehicle. 
  2. Claim VAT only for the fuel used during business trips by maintaining thorough mileage records to demonstrate usage exclusively for business purposes. 

How can you reclaim VAT with a fuel scale charge?

If you use a business car for personal purposes, you can reclaim VAT on all fuel usage, including both business and personal use. Then, you’ll pay a fuel scale charge to offset the personal use, eliminating the need for detailed mileage records.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Reclaim VAT on all fuel used for your vehicle. 
  2. Use HMRC’s VAT fuel scale tool to calculate your fuel scale charge. 
  3. Include the fuel scale charge on your VAT return.

However, if your fuel usage is very low, the fuel scale charge might exceed the VAT you reclaim, making this method unsuitable for some businesses. 

Let’s take a look at an example

Imagine you make quarterly VAT submissions and your company uses a BMW 318i with a CO2 emissions figure of 146.

The road fuel surcharge for this emissions figure is £349 per quarter, consisting of a basic charge of £290.83 and VAT of £58.17.

You can deduct the basic charge (£290.83) from the total fuel costs for its Corporation Tax calculation.

For VAT purposes, your company can reclaim the VAT paid on fuel purchases, excluding the VAT portion of the road fuel surcharge (£58.17). 

How can you reclaim fuel VAT by calculating business mileage?

As you now know, you can make a claim for only the fuel you use for company purposes.

For vehicles such as pool cars, commercial vehicles, and petrol machinery, keeping an accurate mileage record is simpler, as all mileage will have been completed for business purposes.

If you use a vehicle for both business and personal use, you will need to keep a detailed record of the purpose and mileage of all your journeys. Once you have calculated the percentage of your mileage that was for business use, you can claim that percentage of VAT back from HMRC. 

How do you prove business mileage to HMRC?

HMRC requires that you keep an accurate mileage log. For this to be compliant with HMRC standards, you must include:

  • Date of the journey 
  • Purpose (personal or business) 
  • Start and end addresses (with postcodes) 
  • Total miles driven

You should request monthly mileage logs from all your employees.

It’s also worth noting that any self-employed individuals need to maintain their own records. 

How do you submit a VAT claim to HMRC? 

As a business, you can claim back VAT on fuel expenses, along with other business costs, in your VAT return. If you’re VAT-registered, you’ll need to submit a VAT return every three months, called an ‘accounting period.’  
HMRC requires a return to be sent at the end of each accounting period, even if you have no VAT to pay or reclaim. 

The question you’ve been waiting for: Is it worth it?

As you may have guessed, many businesses avoid reclaiming VAT on fuel and petrol due to the complexity of bookkeeping. However, it can be beneficial if you provide free fuel to employees for business purposes.  
If this is something you’re interested in, keep records for up to four years, as VAT on fuel can only be reclaimed within this timeframe, and remember to use Fuel Scale Charge and Flat Rate Claim to simplify VAT calculations for fuel expenses. 


What is a reasonable rate for fuel expenses? 

To determine a reasonable rate for fuel expenses, businesses can use HMRC’s Advisory Fuel Rates, which provide standard mileage rates based on engine size and fuel type. These rates apply to both VAT on business fuel usage and private journeys using company fuel.

For employees using company cars and fuel:

  • The company can reimburse the employee at the advisory rate for business mileage and reclaim VAT on the payment. 
  • Alternatively, the company can cover the fuel cost, then charge the employee for private mileage, reclaiming VAT on the fuel cost minus the employee’s contribution. 

Can sole traders claim petrol costs? 

As a sole trader, you can claim petrol costs as part of your business expenses. You’re eligible for a mileage allowance of 45 pence per mile for the first 10,000 miles when using a car for business purposes. After exceeding 10,000 miles, the allowance reduces to 25 pence per mile. If you use a motorbike for business, the mileage allowance is 24 pence per mile.

Take advantage of our business mileage tracker

If you need help calculating your fuel expenses, or with any other aspect of your travel expenses, book a demo today to see how we can help. 

HMRC Mileage Rates 2024: Everything you Need to Know

By Resources

HMRC Mileage Rates 2024: Everything you Need to Know


Did you know that your employees can claim back hours spent on the road? 

Providing mileage allowance for employees who drive for work has become more popular in recent years. However, with HMRC’s many rules and updates, understanding how this process operates can be confusing for both you and your employees. 

This blog aims to offer a complete guide on everything you need to know regarding HMRC mileage reimbursement rates in 2024.

What is HMRC’s mileage allowance?

Car allowance mileage rates allow employees to claim back vehicle expenses for business purposes, covering costs like petrol, road tax, and insurance. Instead of individually calculating wear and tear on each vehicle, HMRC uses standard pence per mile expenses called ‘Mileage Allowance Payments’ (MAPs).  
This deduction applies to any employee using their vehicle for business. The purpose is to align with tax regulations, ensuring business costs are tax-deductible and not subject to tax when incurred from a personal account. 

How much is the HMRC 2024 mileage allowance?

With the HMRC set mileage allowance, the same rate is applied for every employee, depending on the type of vehicle they use.  

Type of vehicle  10,000 miles  10,000 + miles 
Cars and vans  45p  25p 
Motorcycles  24p  24p 
Bikes  20p  20p 


Calculating business mileage is straightforward. All you need to do is multiply the miles travelled by the mileage rate for your vehicle.

For instance, if an employee travels 18,000 business miles in their car, the mileage deduction for the year would be £6,500 (10,000 miles x 45p + 8,000 miles x 25p)

It’s also worth noting that if they travel with colleagues from the same company, the driver can claim an extra 5p per mile per passenger.  


Let’s take a closer look at each milage allowance 


HMRC mileage reimbursement rates for cars and van

The HMRC-approved mileage rate for cars and vans is £0.45 per mile for the first 10,000 miles per year. After that, it’s £0.25 per mile

For example, if your employee drove 19,000 miles for work this year, they’d receive:

  • £4,500 for the first 10,000 miles (10,000 x £0.45) 
  • £2,250 for the next 9,000 miles (9,000 x £0.25

For a total reimbursement of £6,750

Hybrid cars follow the same standard rates, while electric cars have a fixed rate of £0.05 per mile, with no limit on mileage. 


HMRC mileage reimbursement rates for motorcycles

If your employee owns a motorcycle, they’re eligible to receive £0.24 per mile when driving for business purposes.

Unlike cars and vans, motorcycles are not subjected to the 10,000 miles limit, which means that going above this threshold does not change the 24p rate.

For example, if your employee drove 5000 miles for work this year on their motorbike, they’d receive

£0.24 x 5000 = £1,200 in tax-free reimbursement.  

HMRC mileage reimbursement rates for bicycles

Those who own bicycles might not be paying for fuel, but still incur costs such as insurance, as well as general wear and tear during use. The government recognises this and awards £0.20 per mile for an unlimited amount of business-related mileage.

For example, if your employee cycled 450 miles for eligible business trips this year, they’d receive

£0.20 x 450 = £90 to in tax-free reimbursement. 

What journeys can employees claim mileage on?

Whether your employees drive to work frequently or occasionally, it is worth keeping track of their mileage and understanding what trips qualify to be exempt from taxes, and which do not.

Business journeys employees can claim:

  • Travelling from one office to another. 
  • Travelling to a temporary location to conduct business (i.e., meeting a client or attending an event).

Business journeys employeescan’t claim:

  • The daily commute to a permanent office. 
  • Travelling to a location very close by. 
  • Any travel undertaken for private purposes, even if work-related activities such as making calls or running errands are included.

The only tax-free method for reimbursing business miles is through the approved mileage allowance. Giving an employee a company car or a fixed sum towards petrol will both be taxed, so be aware here.   
Other travel expenses like parking charges and road tolls while using a company vehicle are covered under subsistence expenditure, not the mileage allowance. 


What are HMRC advisory fuel rates? 

HMRC advisory fuel rates apply to company-owned cars and serve two main purposes:

  1. Reimbursing employees for business travel expenses incurred in a company car. 
  2. Managing reimbursements when employees use the company car for personal travel and need to repay the business. 

Company car fuel rates are reviewed every three months and can change based on actual fuel rates. You can only rely on the previous rates for up to one month before switching to the current rates.

HMRC fuel rates are influenced by factors like engine size, manufacturer data on miles per gallon, current fuel prices, and the calculated rate per mile

If your employee is using a hybrid car, it’s treated like a petrol or diesel car. But if they’ve got a fully electric vehicle, they are reimbursed at £0.09 per mile. 

The following tables were taken from HMRC and have been in place since 1st December 2023. They’re provided with the purpose of breaking down exactly why fuel rates are at their current numbers: 


Engine size (cc)  Mean MPG  Fuel price (per litre)  Fuel price (per gallon)  Rate per mile  Advisory fuel rate 
Up to 1400  49.5  152.4 pence  692.8 pence  14.0 pence  14 pence 
1401 to 2000  42.1  152.4 pence  692.8 pence  16.5 pence  16 pence 
Over 2000  26.7  152.4 pence  692.8 pence  26.0 pence  26 pence 



Engine size (cc)  Mean MPG  Fuel price (per litre)  Fuel price (per gallon)  Rate per mile  Advisory fuel rate 
Up to 1600  56.7  160.4 pence  729.1 pence  12.9 pence  13 pence 
1601 to 2000  48.0  160.4 pence  729.1 pence  15.2 pence  15 pence 
Over 2000  36.3  160.4 pence  729.1 pence  20.1 pence  20 pence 


LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) 

Engine size (cc)  Mean MPG  Fuel price (per litre)  Fuel price (per gallon)  Rate per mile  Advisory fuel rate 
Up to 1400  39.6  86.7 pence  394.1 pence  10 pence  10 pence 
1401 to 2000  33.7  86.7 pence  394.1 pence  11.7 pence  12 pence 
Over 2000  21.3  86.7 pence  394.1 pence  18.5 pence  18 pence 

In reality, only the size of the vehicle’s engine and its equivalent price per mile matter.

Let’s consider an example where your business owns a company car.

The car has a 1000cc petrol engine, an employee pays for fuel for 3000 business miles per year. Additionally, the same employee uses the company car for personal use for 800 miles per year.

Using HMRC’s advisory fuel rates for petrol cars with engines up to 1400cc at £0.14 per mile:

  • £0.14 x 3000 miles = £420 for business use. 
  • £0.14 x 800 miles = £112 for personal use.

Therefore, your business can claim £420 from HMRC through the fuel advisory for 2024, and you can also recoup £112 from the employee for personal use. 




What vehicles are eligible for mileage allowance? 

Employees are eligible to receive mileage allowance payments for any vehicle they own and have registered with the DVLA, such as cars, vans, motorcycles, scooters, and bicycles, provided these vehicles are used for work purposes. 

When do you need to report HMRC mileage reimbursement rates?

If an employee travels over 10,000 miles, you must report it to HMRC using form P11D. Paying employees more than the approved amount of 45p per mile is also considered a benefit and must be reported on a P11D and taxed. 

What’s the best way to reimburse your employees in 2024? 

Tracking and calculating individual mileage allowances for employees, especially for SMEs with company cars, can be tedious. However, expense management software like Capture Expense, uses accurate reimbursement features to simplify this process by automatically calculating mileage based on journey data and HMRC figures, saving time and effort.


Ready to streamline your mileage allowance process?

Book a demo with Capture Expense today and discover how our software simplifies tracking, calculating, and reimbursing mileage while ensuring compliance with HMRC mileage reimbursement rates.  

Bookkeeping vs accounting: What’s The Difference?

By Featured, Resources

Bookkeeping vs accounting: What’s The Difference?


As a business owner you’ll know all too well that you have to keep track of a lot: How much money is coming in? How much is going out? And the list goes on. You need to be pretty much on top of everything – regardless of the size of your business.

That’s why it’s so important to understand the nuances between bookkeeping and accounting. Both of these aspects of your business are crucial for financial management and decision-making.

This blog will give you all the information you need around bookkeeping and accounting differences. 

What is bookkeeping in accounting? 

Bookkeeping involves tracking daily financial transactions, documenting them, and maintaining accurate financial records.

Tasks may include: 

  • Managing and recording all financial transactions and balancing the books. 
  • Reconciling books with bank statements and other source documents. 
  • Generating monthly financial reports. 
  • Preparing tax returns. 
  • Handling invoices (accounts receivable/payable). 
  • Calculating payroll and deductions. 

What is accounting?

Accounting involves analysing financial information (typically prepared by bookkeepers) to create statements and reports that offer insight into a company’s operations.

Tasks may include: 

  • Monitoring company expenditure and budgets. 
  • Preparing accounts, tax returns and other financial statements. 
  • Analysing financial data and performance. 
  • Analysing operational costs and calculating performance metrics. 
  • Conducting financial forecasting and risk analysis. 
  • Guiding senior management team in making informed financial decisions. 

Bookkeeping vs accounting: What are the key differences?

In simple terms, bookkeeping focuses on accurately recording financial transactions, while accounting provides strategic insights into a business’s financial health using the information from bookkeeping.

Have a look at the main bookkeeping and accounting differences.

  Bookkeeping  Accounting 
Purpose  Keep a methodical and chronological log of all financial activities and transactions.  Examine and interpret data, create financial projections, and offer guidance to business owners regarding financial decisions. 
Key skills  A bookkeeper must possess strong organisational skills, attention to detail, and proficiency in financial record-keeping to accurately manage and maintain a company’s financial transactions.  An accountant must possess advanced analytical abilities, financial expertise, and strategic decision-making skills to interpret complex financial data and provide valuable insights to business owners. 
Educational requirements  Formal bookkeeping or accounting training.  Bachelor’s degree in accounting or equivalent and professional certification. 
Tools used  Accounting software, spreadsheets, financial statements.  Analysis software, tax preparation tools, budgeting software. 


Bookkeeping vs accounting: What do you need?

Whether your business is big or small, understanding your accounting needs is crucial.

As a business owner, knowing when to hire a bookkeeper or an accountant can be challenging, as both roles overlap somewhat.

Here are some tips to help you decide

Consider a bookkeeper:

  • For recording daily transactions. 
  • If your business has small inventories and a simple structure. 
  • If you’re working within a conservative salary budget (bookkeepers typically earn less than accountants).

Consider an accountant:

  • For managing and recording complex transactions. 
  • If your business deals with larger inventories. 
  • If you have the ability to invest more in accounting services. 



What should you look for in an efficient bookkeeper? 

Look for strong organisational skills, attention to detail, and reliability. They should have a thorough understanding of financial processes and be able to accurately maintain records of daily transactions.  
Additionally, effective communication and the ability to collaborate with other team members are valuable traits.  
Whether they have formal certifications or not, their track record and experience in bookkeeping tasks should demonstrate their competence in managing financial records effectively.


What should you look for in an efficient accountant?

Seek specialised expertise tailored to your business needs. They should possess advanced analytical skills and a deep understanding of financial principles, enabling them to interpret complex data and provide strategic insights.  
Look for experience in your industry or similar businesses, as well as a track record of delivering accurate financial analysis and guidance.  
Effective communication and the ability to translate financial data into actionable recommendations for business growth are also key attributes.  
Whether you hire a firm or an individual accountant, ensure they can adapt to your company’s requirements and provide valuable support in achieving your financial goals. 


Can bookkeepers perform accounting tasks, and what limits their scope of work?

Bookkeepers primarily handle day-to-day financial record-keeping, while accountants engage in higher-level financial analysis. While bookkeepers can perform basic accounting tasks like generating financial statements, they may lack expertise in analysing complex financial data. 


Bookkeeping vs accounting: what should a small business owner hire?

Whether a small business owner should hire both a bookkeeper and an accountant depends on the business’s needs and financial complexity. Initially, they might start with a bookkeeper for daily financial management. As the business grows, they may engage an accountant for higher-level financial analysis, tax planning, and compliance. Sometimes, a small business owner might find an accountant who offers both bookkeeping and accounting services. 


Keep track of company spend with Capture Expense

Effortlessly track and report on all spend with our business expense tracker—giving you an instant detailed breakdown of spending by mileage, user, total expenditure, and more. Book a personalised demo to see it in action.

DoNESC Case Study

By Case Study

From Excel to Excellence:

Capture Expense’s Impact on DoNESC’s Paperless Journey

A user-friendly system

supporting over 340 users across multiple organisations, managed by a small finance team.

A paperless transformation

replacing a manual Excel-based system with an automated digitised one.

Capture Expense effortlessly manages 80+ monthly expense claims, streamlining DoNESC’s financial reporting process

The Diocese of Norwich Education Services Company (DoNESC) is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to delivering high-quality, cost-effective services to academies within the Diocese and beyond. Their mission extends to managing 41 academy sites under the Diocese of Norwich Education and Academies Trust (DNEAT) umbrella and an additional 14 under St Benet’s.

Furthermore, the platform oversees two multi-academy trust staff and operates the services of the DoNESC services company, encompassing approximately 17,000 pupils and representing over 25% of primary pupils in Norfolk.

The challenge

  • Manual tracking: 80% of claims are travel related, a considerable amount of time is taken having to check that the claimant has recorded the correct information. Mileage claims were particularly difficult to audit, with no controls for deducting the commute element.
  • Data synchronisation: unable to seamlessly integrate with their Xero and PSF accounts, hindering their efficiency in financial management.
  • Lack of intuitive design: The current system makes it challenging for users to seamlessly move through processes, leading to frustration and potential errors.

expense reimbursements, reimbursed expenses

The solution

  • Precise mileage tracking: Capture Expense streamlines the process by automatically verifying and storing accurate travel-related information for claimants, reducing the time and effort required for manual checks
  • Seamless integration: Capture Expense’s RESTful API service provides seamless integration with Xero. It also facilitates effortless integration with PS Financials through a formatted export file.
  • Fast implementation: Capture Expense is designed for minimal training, ease of setup and maintenance, we also provide a dedicated consultant during implementation.

The benefits

  • Capture Expense automatically calculates mileage journeys through a seamlessly integrated Google service.
  • Apply company polices and rules automatically to reduce out of policy claims.
  • Automatic card reconciliation and bank feed with Open Banking.
  • Modern software design for ease of use and minimal training.

The results

Fully digitised system

Transforming DoNESC’s expense processes into a fully digitised system has led to quicker processing, accurate data management, and improved overall cost-effectiveness.

Accessible anywhere, anytime

The ability to access the system on both mobile and desktop ensures unparalleled flexibility, enhances their responsiveness, and overall ease of use.

Enhanced efficiency

By replacing Excel Workbook expense forms with dynamically generated online forms DoNESC can now streamline their expense submission process, keep track of their expenses and make well-informed business decisions.

Government Case Study

By Case Study

Digital Transformation in Government Finance:

How Capture Expense Streamlined a Government’s Expense Workflow

Expense Managements future

Paper trails to digital finesse

leading to faster approvals, reimbursements and greater efficiency.

A streamlined approval process

has been implemented, successfully resolving their previously complex expenses approval workflow.

Prominent government entity modernises its expense management processes

In pursuit of greater efficiency and control over their finances, our client chose Capture Expense, this decision is set to bring significant improvements to the entire department’s workforce, impacting approximately 800 users. 
This diverse user base consists of 383 officers spread across 632 constituencies, all of whom play a crucial role in managing the expenses associated with running elections in the UK.

The challenge

  • Manual approval workflow: All expense claims were processed by hand.
  • Inefficient tracking: They were unable to effectively track and record staff hours.
  • Intricate workflow: Needed a highly configurable approval workflow with multiple stages, including conditional stages for implementing spending rules and advances.
  • Security: Their processes fell short of meeting their stringent security expectations.
  • Manual integration: They were unable to seamlessly integrate with their accounting software, SAP.
  • Limited accessibility: Their expenses weren’t accessible across various browsers and devices.

business expense app, expense tracking app, expenses app

The solution

  • Streamlined approval workflow: Claims are electronically submitted to the officers, granting them the authority to approve or reject as needed.
  • Complete visibility: All staff resource records can be added or imported by role and hourly rate.
  • Configurable workflow: Approval workflow is fully configurable with multiple stages and conditional stages such as spending rules and advances.
  • Fully compliant: Capture Expense ensures the highest level of security through compliance with Cybersecurity Plus and ISO 27001 standards. 
  • Effortless ERP integration: Capture Expense offers a REST API for SAP to access approved expenses and funding allocations.
  • Fully compatible: With various browsers and devices, including Android and iOS on mobile, tablet, and desktop platforms. 

The benefits

  • Through our user-friendly platform users can manage receipt uploads and expenses claims in seconds.
  • Capture Expense improves the accuracy of spend data by reducing manual data-entry errors.
  • Historical claims can be viewed at any time to help calculate future funding. This data can also be exported into Excel as required.
  • Capture Expense prevents out-of-policy spending with individual spending limits.

The results

Real-time insights

By having access to real-time company spending data, our client can make well-informed decisions and effectively plan their budget.

Measurable results

Our solution enables users to highlight overspending, conduct aged analysis, manage budgets, and forecast future expenditures.

Multi-stage workflow approval

Our system offers full customisation, allowing Capture Expense to seamlessly align with our client’s intricate, multi-layered expense approval workflows.

Single view of spend

The management team has complete data overview to identify trends, monitor spend and keep on top of budget and cash flow.

Henry Adams Case Study

By Case Study

30 Users, 1 Solution:

Henry Adams’ Journey to Seamless Expense Management and VAT claim success

From 20 minutes to 3 minutes

resulting in an 88% reduction in the required time to fill in expense reports.

67% increase in VAT claims

leading to a substantial financial gain for the company.

Tripling savings: How Capture Expense redefines cost-effectiveness for Henry Adams

Henry Adams is a reputable real estate agency with a rich history of serving clients since its establishment in 1990. Known for their expertise, professionalism, and personalised approach, they are dedicated to helping individuals and families find their dream homes across various locations.

   Henry Adams’ typical expense costs £25.71 to process, they average 30 reports per month for a total of £771.30. Choosing Capture Expense is expected to reduce costs to less than one-third of the current expenditure.

The challenge

  • Manual expense process: Using spreadsheets to fill out expense forms increased their workload and potential for errors.
  • Lack of automated approval process: Resulting in delays in approval cycles, lack of accountability, and potential for uncontrolled spending.
  • Accurately tracking spend: Difficulty optimising budgets, identifying cost-saving opportunities and maintaining financial control.

expense reimbursements, reimbursed expenses

The solution

  • Digital expense claims: The implementation of AI-powered OCR ensures real-time processing, automatically creating claims or attaching receipts directly to credit card transactions, significantly reducing manual effort and improving efficiency.
  • Automated expense approvals: Capture Expense offers a flexible multi-level approval system. Reports can have any number of approval stages, based on user or cost centre criteria, and the value of the claim can determine the appropriate approver and the number of stages required.
  • Real-time expense analytics: Empowers users with instant access to company spending data, facilitating strategic decision-making and personalised budget planning through dynamic views tailored to individual business roles.

The benefits

  • Embrace a fully digital, paperless system with advanced receipt management.
  • Leverage advanced OCR technology to minimise manual entry, enhance automation, and elevate system intelligence.
  • Gain access to extensive reporting capabilities and unlimited analytical depth through the use of tags.
  • Open banking for commercial credit cards
  • Reimbursements for out of pocket claims
  • Seamless integration with over 50 back-office systems.

The results

Cost savings

Capture Expense’s streamlined process for expense submission, approval, and integration has reduced the administrative workload, leading to significant cost savings.

Single view of spend

The management team has complete data overview to identify trends, monitor spend and keep on top of budget and cash flow.

Multi-stage workflow approval

Our system offers full customisation, allowing Capture Expense to seamlessly align with our client’s intricate, multi-layered expense approval workflows.

B&H Worldwide Case Study

By Case Study

Unlocking Aerospace Excellence:

How Capture Expense Transformed B&H Worldwide

A global solution

capable of managing expenses for multiple sites including the UK, Germany, Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand.

A strategic move

from their old system, which faced issues such as poor support and high costs, to a more efficient, cost-effective and user-friendly solution.

Capture Expense enhances the efficiency of expense processing across B&H Worldwide’s global operations.

B&H Worldwide was established in the UK in 1988 and has grown into a multi-national organisation and market leader in the highly specialist aerospace logistics industry. 

They operate across the globe with around 200 employees in locations including UK, USA, Singapore, Europe and Australia. They typically process around 35 expense claims per month across the group. 

The challenge

  • Manual receipt tracking: Managing a high volume of receipts and documents while dealing with the inefficiencies of manual submission and processing. 
  • Complex VAT compliance: Navigating VAT compliance with the need for pre-built records, adaptability to international standards, and accommodation for specific partial recovery scenarios. 
  • Open banking limitations: Managing direct connections with multiple banks in multiples counties using SFTP.
  • Multi-currency management: Dealing with the complexities of managing expenses in multiple currencies, requiring accurate exchange rate calculations and flexibility for users during overseas travel. 
  • Mult-level approval: Managing a complex approval process for expense reports, with varying levels, based on users, cost centres, and claim values, leading to potential delays and lack of transparency. 
  • Manual integrations: Integrating expense data seamlessly with existing systems, specifically Microsoft GP and Cargowise, without manual data entry and the risk of errors. 

expense reimbursements, reimbursed expenses

The solution

  • Smart OCR scanning: The implementation of AI-powered OCR ensures real-time processing, automatically creating claims or attaching receipts directly to credit card transactions, significantly reducing manual effort and improving efficiency. 
  • Fully VAT compliant: Capture Expense provides pre-built VAT records within the software, encompassing full standard UK, EU, or specific rates. 
  • Streamlined credit card expense process: Capture Expense leverages Open Banking for a secure and standardised real-time credit card transaction feed from HSBC. For countries without Open Banking, the provision of a credit card statement import feature, accepting CSV files, ensures seamless integration.  
  • Multi-currency support: Capture Expense provides robust support for multi-currency functionality, offering access to over 150 different exchange rates. Users can easily raise expenses in their own currency or based on overseas travel, with the system automatically calculating the home value in real time using the correct exchange rate from the date of the claim. 
  • Customisable approval system: Capture Expense offers a flexible multi-level approval system. Reports can have any number of approval stages, based on user or cost centre criteria, and the value of the claim can determine the appropriate approver and the number of stages required.  
  • Seamless integrations: Capture Expense effectively integrates with over 50 back-office systems. The support for Microsoft GP and Cargowise includes an export service that generates specifically formatted CSV files.  

The benefits

  • Experience a modern software design that prioritises ease of use, requiring minimal training. 
  • Embrace a fully digital, paperless system with advanced receipt management. 
  • Leverage advanced OCR technology to minimise manual entry, enhance automation, and elevate system intelligence. 
  • Automatically enforce company policies and rules reducing instances of out-of-policy claims. 
  • Gain access to extensive reporting capabilities and unlimited analytical depth through the use of tags.

The results

Complete spend and policy control 

Capture Expense provides robust spend and policy control, allowing the application of rules and limits to expense categories, individual claimants, or groups of claimants. 

Accessible anywhere, anytime

The ability to access the system on both mobile and desktop ensures unparalleled flexibility, enhances their responsiveness, and overall ease of use.

Streamlined VAT calculation process

Capture Expense offers automatic VAT calculations with support for both domestic and EU rates. This feature ensures accurate and efficient handling of Value Added Tax. 

AlertSystems Case Study

By Case Study

From Paperwork Piles to Digital Ease:

AlertSystems’ Success Story with Capture Expense

From 6 weeks to 6 seconds

speeding up expense processing for rapid reimbursement and greater efficiency.

A mobile-first approach

ensuring that users can access the system seamlessly from any location, at any time.

The client

As one of the UK’s leading providers of security systems to businesses, the AlertSystems group, comprises of AlertSystems, Alert Monitoring and Alert Data. The companies are all committed to providing excellent service and products, such as their latest CCTV development,, to organisations seeking high-quality business security solutions.

Before implementing an expense management system, AlertSystems’ process was entirely manual, which meant they were spending countless hours and resource on collecting and filing paper receipts.

AlertSystems initially decided to trial another expense management provider; this however raised a number of issues which only Capture Expense had an answer for.

The challenge

  • Their expense process was entirely paper-based, resulting in employees saving and mailing receipts.
  • They required a system that works across web browsers and devices, ensuring accessibility for all employees.
  • Over 60% of employees who claim expenses work remotely and required a mobile solution that ran alongside the desktop version.
  • Managing both out-of-pocket expenses and expenses incurred through corporate credit cards.
  • They required a solution that could seamlessly integrate with Sage 50.

The solution

  • Capture Expense streamlines the submission and approval of both card and cash expenses in one integrated system.
  • The platform offers identical functionality on both mobile and desktop, enabling access across various browsers and devices.
  • Designed for minimal training and ease of setup, Capture Expense ensures that users can quickly adapt to the new system.
  • The platform provides an automated transactions feed with their bank.
  • Capture Expense facilitated a seamless integration with Sage 50 through Zynk.

The benefits

  • 100% Paperless: Capture Expense helped AlertSystems go fully paperless, eliminating the need for physical receipts and paperwork.
  • Advanced OCR: The system’s OCR technology reduces manual data entry by automatically extracting and categorising receipt information.
  • Automated Policy Enforcement: Capture Expense automates policy checks, reducing out-of-policy claims, ensuring compliance, and minimising manual checks.
  • Multi-Stage Workflow Approval: Capture Expense’s workflow mirrors AlertSystems’ group structure, guaranteeing expenses are approved by the right personnel at each stage.

The results

Faster expense submission

Capture Expense has significantly reduced the time it takes for employees to submit their expenses. Previously, it took six weeks, but now, most people submit expenses daily or weekly, leading to quicker reimbursement.

Mobile accessibility

Employees appreciate the ability to use Capture Expense on their phones. This eliminates the need to carry laptops for expense submission and allows for convenient on-the-go expense reporting.

Cost savings

Capture Expense’s streamlined process for expense submission, approval, and integration has reduced the administrative workload, leading to significant cost savings by optimising resource allocation and reducing the need for manual data entry and reconciliation.

Customer service

Capture Expense takes great pride in its customer service. With a team of dedicated professionals, they ensure that every customer’s needs are met promptly and effectively.