Melissa Parcels R.D.H opened Solo, The Dental Hygiene Spa in the fall of 2012, with the passion for dental hygiene, her patients and the ambitions for working independently. The clinic is Calgary-based in the heart of Mission District, and it provides all dental hygiene services and spa perks in a spa setting at an affordable fee for Calgarians. Melissa has incorporated massage therapy and esthetics along with her dental hygiene services all in one place. Melissa believes that cash capitol and understanding basic accounting is the key to her success in the first year and she had the following advice for fellow entrepreneurs:

Get a company credit card. Having one will allow you to easily separate those company purchases to one account. When doing your accounting in the beginning, it can be confusing to have credits, debits, returns and purchases, and banking fees all from your bank account. It has been so much easier for Melissa to have all the purchases filed to one account on the credit card statement, leaving the bank account for bills and direct withdrawals. Simplifying the money will simplify the accounting process, especially for a beginner.

Get trained on accounting software. Take a free accounting class at the library or get trained on QuickBooks or Simply Accounting. Melissa spent hours with someone learning the ins and outs of the program and made notes so she was involved and truly invested in the process. She also does all her own bookkeeping each month. It is important to stay on top of it and set aside an afternoon every month to go through your bills and receipts. Monthly reconciliations are the key to your corporate taxes. It can be overwhelming at first, any new program and skill usually is, but it is vital to understanding your finances each month to also curb any spending.

Wait to hire. During the first year, learning is not just a curve it’s your whole focus to learn. If your business can allow it, then it will be vital to wait on hiring staff until you can pay yourself. Each business is unique in service and setting but Melissa managed to be her own office manager, office cleaner, hygienist, receptionist and bookkeeper during her first year. It gives you a large scope of practice and a world of appreciation when you do hire to fill one of your many roles down the road. Wait the first year to understand basic accounting before learning to do payroll for an employee.

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