.Organized Workplace and Home Office
Let’s talk organization. Not just stacked bins and fancy filing systems either. We want to share our top 7 tips for an organized workplace and home office that are as functional as they are fashionable. Sure, aesthetics play a role in keeping up with your books. However, color coding is only valuable when it benefits the two most important colors in any business. That is, keeping your bottom line out of the red and well into the black.
Here, we share how we at Two Sense Consulting use professional and practical ways to handle all things financial. Even in supplemental areas that surprisingly support the financial aspects in your workplace and home office space.
Out with the old and in with the reve”new”.
Did you know that a whopping 4 hours each work week is spent sifting through paperwork versus being productive? Yep. And time wasted is money down the drain for your business or company.
We highly recommend a two-step process to get your work space in order, gaining back that time you otherwise would have lost.
First, go through the piles of paperwork in your office space and discard true junk mail, trash, outdated content and so on. When it comes to IRS-related paperwork, they require 3 years for record retention. We recommend 5-10 years (and can show you how to file and organize such when you work with us.) If remaining paperwork isn’t pending or trending, it’s trash. Next, form a pile to later sort through the pending items. For now, the goal is to clear your workspace so that the coming weeks can bring clutter-free clarity.
Second, as new paperwork comes in, if it is trash and takes less than 60 seconds to discard, get your free-throwing skills ready and toss that trash in the bin at once.
You can now revisit the paperwork you’ve needed to tend to in your “pending” pile by making folders for such and adding to them over time as new files become necessary.
Save time, save trees.
Do a favor for the planet and your productivity. Use electronic receipt options via a receipt management scanner or app for your smartphone. Confirm your choice lets you export data to whatever expense reporting/accounting app you use and voila, less clutter, legible receipts and even categorizing, all available at your fingertips come mid-monday meeting or tax time.
For example, in QuickBooks Online, there are a few ways to enter and categorize expense receipts when you’re on the go. You can upload receipt images from your computer’s hard drive, capture and send them from your mobile device, and even email images to QuickBooks. Talk about convenience!
After you send images to QuickBooks, they show up in the Banking or Transactions menu, and you’ll see the Receipts tab. This is where you categorize and track uploaded expense receipts and bills.
Book time with a Bookkeeper.
One of the most important and possibly wisest investments of your time and assets is with a bookkeeper. If you run a business, you already have some kind of process in place for invoicing, processing payments, recording expenses and tracking projects. However, we all learned this past year of Covid-19 that anyone who had even the slightest hiccup in their books missed out on really helpful, time-sensitive PPP and EIDL loans.
If you haven’t updated your process lately, chances are the next round of economic programs will be divvied out to those whose books are in order first. Leaving many out of the loop and potentially at risk of closing (just like the nearly 60% of businesses that closed their doors for good this past year.) For this reason alone, an organized workplace and home office are imperative.
Hiring a bookkeeper NOW can save you a ton of time and money in the future, while also helping you potentially gain even more profit with programs and protocols that keep your business running smoothly – even amid a pandemic. Our job is to clean your books so that your administrative tasks are not only easier, but also, more efficient.
In fact, we are just a phone call away and offer free consultations, no matter the level of accounting help you need for your business.
Separate Business Expenses from Personal Expenses
You may already have this down, but truth is, few business owners have a good grasp on their expenses and, subsequently, their write-offs, come April 15th. This is an incredibly simple process that when habitually practiced can save you massive amounts in tax filing fees.
A business owner needs to know and recognize what type of expenses can be claimed against the profit to reduce tax, and what can’t be. For example, an expense that is directly related to the operation of the business and towards producing income is usually tax deductible. While, an expense that is for the owner’s personal pleasure is not. Mixing personal and business does not mean a full claim for business can be made either, such as taking a client out for lunch or buying them gifts.
Having your accounts separated makes it easier for quarterly or annual taxes. This saves you money on a tax professional sifting through various accounts. Making this one of the greatest tips for an organized workplace and home office.
We know this can sound ambitious if it hasn’t been practiced regularly. That is why we offer a three-tiered approach to affordable bookkeeping services that fit your needs and budget. Hire us to get you up to par.
Duplicate home and office filing practices.
When you have figured out a filing system you’ll stick with, it’s worth it to duplicate it. Will you likely also be processing paperwork elsewhere? If your office space boasts a quality cabinet with a system that is easy to adhere to, follow suit at your home office. Vice versa. Bring the serenity of your color-coordinated, Container Store obsessions into the workplace if it’ll help you maintain the same healthy habits of record and receipt keeping at the 9-5. From cabinets to carts, a system so nice is worth creating twice.
Have a Solid Backup plan.
When it comes to any record keeping, having documents easily accessible is ideal. But even more important is having the documents to begin with. An alarming 70 percent of businesspeople lose computer data annually. This costs more than $18 billion in audits, business disruptions and lost customers due to breaches or poor accounting.
Having a way to backup your invoices, accounts payable, contact and client info, and more is imperative. Buying and using an external hard drive for data backups is one recommended method. However, there are an increasing number of options available to business owners looking to safely store copies of their data. From USB sticks to full-on network storage servers, you don’t need to spend a ton or risk a ton. Set up a reliable backup system that works for you. We can always recommend what we use and suggest what may be best for you during our free consultation.
Get the team onboard.
Like many of our clients, the ones making the decisions aren’t always the ones on the floor handling customer transactions. That said, your business is only as successful as your employees are effective. This is exactly the reason we implemented our very popular On-site Change Management option. From managing an onshore team to transitioning to a centralized function and managing the shared service, we can work with your entire team. We will find the unique system that works most efficiently with your procedures, expectations and staff.
Digital organization is great, but physical organization still plays a big role in your workplace productivity. Whether you’re working in a corner office or running your business from your kitchen table, the above 7 tips for an organized workplace and home office are sure to assist in your financial success.