As you may already know... I love processes! They help me run my business with ease AND they help me remember everything I need to do.
The money side of a private practice has a few steps. The number of steps depends on some decisions that you have to make. So, let's make some decisions... POP QUIZ! Don't worry, all the answers are correct 🙂 just depends on your preferences.
- How will you be billing / invoicing your clients?
a. Immediately after the treatment session, I will make them a paper bill/receipt in triplicate
b. Immediately after the treatment session, I will make an electronic bill (due immediately)
c. Immediately after the treatment session, I will make an electronic invoice (due within 30 days)
d. When I do my billing, I will make an electronic invoice (due within 30 days)
e. I will let my bookkeeper know to invoice the client
2. How will you receive payment?
a. Cash or Cheque
c. Point of Service (POS) Machine (debit/credit machine)
3. How will you provide receipts?
a. My clients pay immediately, they receive a triplicate paper receipt or POS receipt
b. I send my clients an electronic receipt
c. I let my bookkeeper know to issue an invoice
4. How will you be keeping your businesses books?
a. I keep my books on my own in Excel
b. I keep my books with a program (e.g. Quick Books, Fresh Books)
c. I have a Bookkeeper
d. I keep all my invoices and receipts to give to my accountant at the end of the year
Now, lets put your answers together! That's your process flow.
The flow that I have chosen for my OT private practice is this: I let my bookkeeper know to invoice or provide a receipt to a specific client. I accept cash, cheque, and E-Transfers... which is why my bookkeeper sometimes jumps right to receipts. For some of my clients I ask her to invoice them each session, but for my regulars, we usually invoice once a month (less paperwork 😉 always my goal). Some of my clients need an invoice and a receipt for their benefits claims. Again I just let my bookkeeper know. Sometimes my clients even just let my bookkeeper know! And of course, I have a bookkeeper for bookkeeping - So I send her my expense receipts as well!
Your bookkeeper needs specific info from you so that they can make and send an accurate and professional invoice. I made this very simple app for you that I even use in my practice.
Before I had a bookkeeper I used QuickBooks... but I found it confusing. It had too many other functions that I didn't need. So I used Excel. If you are doing your books yourself make sure you schedule a specific time to do them at least once a month. It's easy to forget or lose receipts!