A spreadsheet can be a useful tool in managing business finances, and you can use popular spreadsheet applications such as Microsoft Excel 2010 to manage data relating to your business income and expenses. Once you have this data stored within a spreadsheet, you can use it for analysis or presentations via graphs and charts, as well as feed it into future decision-making processes such as business plans.
Open Excel. Click "File | New | Available Templates | Blank Workbook." You can include both your income and expenses spreadsheets in the same workbook. This allows you to optionally use a third sheet later to calculate balances using data from the income and expense sheets. Your new workbook should contain three worksheets by default. Title the first two worksheets "income" and "expenses" by right-clicking the tab at the bottom of each one, selecting "Rename sheet," and then entering the name.
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Add headings for the columns in the top row your income worksheet. These should include everything you want to record for each record of income. Typical columns include the date the income was received, the amount, what the income was for -- such as products or services -- and the person or organization who paid it. You may wish to include account, invoice or transaction numbers, or any other identifying references your organization uses. It can also be useful to include a Notes column in case you need to record additional information.
Format your columns. To automatically format the data you enter, select a column by clicking its letter heading. In the Number group within the Home tab, click the little launcher icon beside "Number" to open the Format window. Choose an appropriate category for each column: "Currency" for monetary amounts and "Date" for income dates. Add one or more records of income data to your worksheet to ensure you have the columns and formatting you need.
Select your expense worksheet and set it up for recording expense data. Carry out the same process as for the income spreadsheet, but choose column headings suited to your expenses. This typically includes the date for an expense, the company or individual the expense was paid to, the amount and what the expense was for. Again, a Notes column can be a useful option, as can any account numbers you use.
Format your expenses columns. Add formatting to the columns in your expenses worksheet using the same technique you used for the income sheet. Add some initial records to your sheet to ensure you have it set up to capture all of the data you need. Try to use real examples of your data to make sure you include all required columns. Save your workbook by pressing "Ctrl-S."