Philosophy Behind the GSTJournal
The determination of GST payable or creditable requires the detailed analysis of every transaction and there are two options for small business owners:
- Engage an accountant for regular book keeping - data will need to be entered on a regular basis requiring the use of accounting software and access to detailed information.
- Do the book keeping required for preparing the BAS yourselves.
We have we have come to the conclusion that:
- The best solution for our clients is for us to help them help themselves.
For clients who decide to undertake the task of doing the work themselves our role is educational.
- The best book keeping solution is one that meets client business needs and is not beyond their accounting or computer skills.
- For many clients simple manual or electronic payments and receipts journals are understandable and workable, whereas understanding and using a full ledger program may not be.
So we have
- Designed a simple journal spreadsheet for Microsoft Excel that will handle both cash and accrual based accounting.
- Broken down the analysis of transactions in which GST is involved into as simple steps as possible and described them in a decision tree (See appendix 1). We then built the same decision making process into our spreadsheets
- We divided our journals into two distinct components – the old journal (cash book) style part and a GST analysis part. This has enabled us to install error checking for each and every transaction.