Design to simplify adding and calculating
The following arrangements may help to simplify arithmetical work on documents:
A form designed for vertical addition and subtraction will be easier to use than one designed horizontally.
Items to be subtracted should be arranged below the items from which they are subtracted.
Items to be added or subtracted should be arranged in adjacent entry spaces; they should not be separated by other figures.
If cross casting is necessary it will be done more easily, quickly, and with fewer , errors if items such as £ s. d., or tons, cwts., and lb. etc. are staggered diagonally; (this arrangement of totals on a columnar sheet need not involve the use of extra space, as a vertical space of ⅛″ between the horizontal lines is sufficient to provide the diagonal pattern required, i.e. ⅜″ in all for £ s. d.).
When it is necessary to add items in a series of similar forms the items can be positioned at the edge of the forms enabling them to be overlapped for totalling. This method is useful for analysis as well as summarisation; the original documents can always be reassembled (i.e. overlapped again) for checking etc. purposes.
Mistakes are easier to correct if totals of a series of separate sheets are carried on to a recapitulation sheet of identical ruling instead of bringing and carrying forward on each sheet. A small number of sheets can be cut to different depths so that the totals on each page are visible at one time and a grand total can be obtained without carrying forward on individual sheets.
Accounting work may sometimes be facilitated by:
Ready reckoners specially designed for use with the form.
Carbonised posting strips to provide a record of the postings made; these strips provide a total for control purposes, and proof of posting the right amount to the right account.
‘Exception’ or ‘negative’ posting, e.g. recording only individual amounts not paid, or only the items to which attention must be directed.
When lines of figures are staggered, this not only facilitates totalling and cross casting but also makes it easier to interpret and compare the statistical data for one period with another
By staggering cash entries cross addition can be made much easier; this also reduces the possibility of mistakes. Staggering need not take up more space on the form than that used in the non-staggered arrangement
Another method of staggering cash entries for easy cross addition; this method takes up more space than the arrangement shown above but may be more suited to the general pattern of a form
On this form dotted diagonal lines provide another method of ‘staggering’ to facilitate cross addition of Kilogrammes and the ‘Actual Cost of Bag’ figures at the bottom
This arrangement of columns is less convenient for addition and subtraction than the layout shown in the example below
Addition of ‘Receipts’ to ‘Balance’ is made left to right, and the deduction of ‘Issues’ from ‘Balance’ is made right from left. This arrangement helps to reduce the possibility of error; for example, by adding instead of deducting the issues
Forms can be printed so that closing entries can be used as opening figures for the next sheet or reverse side of the same sheet, e.g. ‘carried forward’ and “brought forward’ figures
If ‘carry forward’ figures can be used to provide the corresponding ‘brought forward’ figures by the use of carbon, not only are time and effort saved, but the risk of error is reduced
This form is tumbler printed and when turned back, as in the illustration, the column totals for the 1st and 2nd quarters on one side of the form can be aligned with the corresponding totals for the 3rd and 4th quarters on the other side; a total for the year can thus be obtained without writing down and carrying forward a separate sub-total for the 1st and 2nd quarters. Spaces for the entry of temporary variations in pay are stippled
Addition can be made easier by using masks of card or paper which conceal entries not to be used in the calculation
Sheets with identical rulings cut to different depths so that the totals on each are visible for comparison and addition to a grand total
Ready Reckoners are used as an aid to repetitive calculation, or as an alternative to the use of a machine. Ready Reckoners often give the advantage of rounding printed figures or answers up and down to suit practical purposes, e.g. to correspond with units of issue, and may provide two or three answers simultaneously
The efficient Ready Reckoner should help the hand and eye in use on a job, e.g. reference and selection is quicker and easier when a solid mass of figures is broken up by suitable spacing, or the use of bold type
These Daily Time Sheets for one workman are summarised weekly by overlapping the forms so that entries in the spaces on the bottom edges make a column of figures; the totals so obtained are entered in the shaded box of the top copy, i.e. the last Time Sheet of the week. This dispenses with the need to create a separate list or summary of the Daily Time Sheets. When the totals have been recorded on other pay etc. documents, the weekly batch of Daily Time Sheets for each workman are stapled together for filing in alphabetical order; the forms can therefore be reassembled in the overlapping position at any time, e.g. for audit purposes
The carbon-coated posting strip provides a simple and inexpensive proof sheet for control purposes. Individual entries on the posting strip and separate accounting records are made in one writing operation. The totals on the posting strip provide control figures to prove posting both the correct amount and the correct account
The entries on this meter card are started at the bottom instead of at the top of the form as this facilitates calculation of the amount consumed; the previous meter reading can thus be deducted from the latest reading in the normal way; this is easier and less subject to error than starting at the top which would involve a deduction ‘upside-down’. The column for the meter reading is divided by vertical dotted lines to provide a separate space for each digit
Forms may be overlapped by means of punched holes and a peg board. Various holding devices can be used to keep the overlapped forms in position for totalling
Arrangement of entry spaces and use of stippling to facilitate addition. In each period the operations are:
Add ‘Basic’ to ‘Total variations’ to give ‘New totals’.
Add ‘Permanent variations’ to ‘Basic’ and enter total against ‘Basic’ on the next lower set of entry spaces.
The items have been arranged so that all additions are carried out over adjoining entry spaces, without jumping over entries. The entries which are relevant to one period only are stippled green; those relevant from period to period are not stippled. The entries for each period are clearly grouped by heavier lines
Accounting work can be reduced by exception or negative posting, e.g. posting only the ‘balance’ outstanding. This ‘exception’ principle directs attention to variations from the normal
Tumbler printing makes it possible to fold over the top edge of a form so that the ‘carried forward’ sub-totals on one side can be aligned above the ‘brought forward’ entry spaces on the other side; this facilitates copying these figures for the ‘totals’ and reduces the risk of error
This method of coded analysis uses a small sheet and provides proof of correct summarisation. The sundry payments shown are treated as follows:
Classify each amount in Col. 3 by placing a code number in Col. 5; this code number is selected from those pre-printed in Col. 8—the number in Col. 8 is crossed through when first used to indicate the codes used.
Total the amounts and code numbers in Cols. 3 and 5.
Summarise the amounts in Col. 3 for each code and enter each total in Col. 6 on the same line as the corresponding code number of Col. 8—a tick is placed in Col. 4 as each amount is transferred to the summary in Col. 6.
Multiply each code number in Col. 5 by the number of times it is used and enter the product in Col. 7 also on the same line as the corresponding code number of Col. 8—the tick in Col. 4 is crossed through as each code is summarised for Col. 7.
Total Cols. 6 and 7—which should agree with the totals for Cols. 3 and 5 if correct.
With a little practice this method is easy to use. The idea can be adapted to suit requirements (e.g. for a different layout, or used without pre-printed code numbers in Col. 8 when more than 25 classifications are needed). Where a wide variety of transactions occur infrequently this method could dispense with the need for recording in several separate books of account
This form positions entries about change on the left edge so that all the forms can be overlapped to provide a quick indication of the subjects needing alteration, and so that the comments of all members can be summarised easily. The reasons for any suggested change are placed adjacent to the coded entry so that these comments can be conveniently related to the action suggested by members