Have you ever felt like your attention is being pulled in 20 different directions at any given time, or that the number of tasks you need to get done in a day is insurmountable? Don’t worry, you are not alone.

Some of the hottest topics of the day are time management, working efficiently, and productivity. We are told to use this method or that app, but in the end we are just getting more distracted by techniques that just don’t work.

10 Hacks To Get More Out of Your Work Day

  1. Get to the Office Early

Getting to the office even just a half an hour early will help your day and provide you with much more than a half-hour of productivity. The quiet moments in the early morning give you time to yourself to get in the zone, zero in on the most important tasks of the day, and set the pace for the day ahead. Not to mention, this looks great to your boss, clients or partners who will surely take note of not only your productivity, but your early arrival.

  1. Make a To-Do List (And Stick to It)

Making a to-do list is one of the oldest tricks in the book. It does so much more than helping you remember all of your to-dos. It helps people stay focused and motivated. Each morning, the first thing you should do is make a to-do list. Review the day before, ask yourself what didn’t get done that needs to, and then prioritize the tasks ahead.

Throughout the day, think about where you are focusing your attention and whether or not it is on the to-do list. If it is not, stop and come back to that task when you have free time.

When you feel unfocused or uninspired, look back at your list and think about everything you have already accomplished (I guarantee it is much more than you think). Start rewarding yourself for hitting benchmarks and make your productivity like a game.

  1. Set Aside a Dedicated Time to Answer Emails

Emails are one of the biggest time sinks in our day. We allow others to dictate our time, instead of taking control of it ourselves. Start setting aside a specific time every day for emails. Fifteen minutes in the morning, fifteen minutes after lunch, and fifteen minutes at the end of the day.

Prioritize which emails you respond to or choose to read. Not everyone deserves or can have your attention – and if it is important, they will call.

Most importantly, stick to this routine! It’ll amaze you how much more you will get done every day.

  1. Use a Time Management System

While using a million productivity apps does waste more time than it saves, finding one time management system that works for you is invaluable. The best systems combine all of your needs into one place like Scoro.com, which combines your team’s individual tasks and project to-do’s into one easy to navigate platform.

Simplicity and integration are key.

  1. Assign Each Project or Task a Set Amount of Time

Another time sink we all fall victim to is spending way too much time on the least important tasks. Avoid this blunder by giving each project or task a set amount of time for you to work on it. The time should be based on not only difficulty, but also importance.

  1. Move Around Once Per Hour

Every hour, take 5 minutes to clear your head and move around. This may sound counter-intuitive, but sitting for long periods of time and focusing on something for too long causes you to be less productive. So get your blood moving and get a fresh perspective, you’ll thank me for this one later.

  1. Eat Lunch Away from Your Desk

Much like the last hack, this one is all about getting a fresh perspective and allowing your mind to rest or think about something else. It is also much more enjoyable and healthy to focus on the act of eating rather than mindlessly shoveling food into your mouth at a computer screen.

Warning: This does not mean eat out every day! Pack a lunch, go to the break room (or a room in your house you don’t work in), chat with coworkers, or get some fresh air outside.

  1. Schedule Planned Interruptions

Interruptions will undoubtedly happen in your day, but when they happen is completely up to you. This is why I believe in “office hours.” Schedule 1-3 hours a day for people to interrupt you. Let them know that between 2pm and 5pm, you welcome them to come to your office or call you up to ask questions, collaborate, or get feedback. Outside of these “office hours” though, they should not interrupt you unless it is urgent.

  1. Ask Yourself What You Plan to Achieve Before Every Call

Many times, our phone calls and meetings go much longer than planned and achieve far less than hoped. Before any conversation, ask yourself what you need to get out of it. When the conversation strays away from the goal, redirect it. If it starts to drag on, cut it short. All parties will thank you for staying focused and respectful of everyone’s precious time.

  1. Block Out Distractions

Lastly, block out the countless distractions that always beg for your attention. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, email, texts, or Candy Crush – learn to ignore them. Apps like SelfControl are great for those of us who cannot block the distractions out without a little help.

 

Beckie Borchers, is a freelance writer and recognizes how a day of productivity can slip by so easily when people don’t allow themselves to focus on what needs to be done throughout the day. If you want to learn about Beckie you can find her on Google+.

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What are the Components of HRIS Software?

by admin on September 15, 2014

Software that is used by businesses must grow quickly so that workers can keep up with global demands in the marketplace. HR software systems have the same requirements. The systems have changed from independent solutions to efficient software suites, which are totally automated. These features accommodate HR software requirements for any workforce.

HR information system (HRIS) software is another name for HR software. It gives HR representatives an interface that has one entry point and numerous modules, which manage the most difficult HR tasks. The software eliminates redundant and tedious tasks that usually require component or analog systems.

A module could also include HR recruitment software, which helps employees locate new talent. When HR representatives use this type of module, they pinpoint areas of need and monitor manpower usage much easily. They can also recruit and target people who have the proper skill-set using online job boards. Recruiting software reduces lead time for finding the correct company drastically.

The HR department can access and optimize each worker’s performance using the management software. In addition, HR representatives can access costs and capability that are associated with the workforce. The modules make the process simple because it ensures that compensation matches each worker’s performance, expertise, and ability.

HR departments obtain repositories for documents in a digital format when they use HR document management software. The software also has revision tracking features, and representatives can update management for digital and physical documents. The software can track various kinds of HR data too, such as attendance data, employee time, and applicant data.

HR and payroll software simplifies employee paying procedures because it automates the process. The modules will gather attendance and time data from the track tax and other sources. It will also keep track of salary changes. The software will then send the data to an external payroll provider so that each task can be completed. These modules can generate direct deposits and manual checks too.

Why HR Software Is Important

A company must operate like a well-oiled machine; each component must work together so that the company moves forward. The HR department is often the cog in a business that has the most pressure. However, HR software keeps this cog running smoothly. There are four reasons why many businesses implement HR software in their workplaces:

Productivity

HR software automates numerous HR functions. It frees up time for HR employees so that they can focus on employee training strategies and finding new hires.

Fewer Errors

When HR employees make errors, there could be major legal and financial complications. One misplaced decimal point may lead to major issues. HR software decreases errors because it automates payroll information.

Compliance

Businesses must comply with numerous federal and state laws, but managing employee information can be complicated. HR software provides easy management solutions and information about compliance.

Metrics

Businesses review information every day to create strategies based on the competition. Most HR software options include metrics tools, which help businesses gauge issues, such as turnover rates and hiring costs.

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It is common knowledge that the world of business is constantly evolving. As a result, we see that businesses are becoming more high tech in order to keep pace with the rate of change and remain competitive and successful in their respective fields. One example of this move toward a technology-based workplace, which this article will explore, is the rising popularity of virtual receptionists.

A virtual receptionist is an individual who answers phone calls on behalf of your business but from a remote location. The concept is simple. Your business call is answered by the virtual receptionist using your business name. If you are free, the call is transferred to you but if not then the virtual receptionist will take a message which is then passed onto you for follow up.

Many businesses are opting for a virtual receptionist for the following reasons –

  1. Increased Customer Service

Having your calls answered the first time and speaking with a live receptionist leaves a great impression of your business. Even though you may be busy, your calls are still being answered and so potential customers and clients will be less likely to hang up and ring one of your competitors.

  1. Greater Freedom

As a virtual receptionist fields all your calls away from you, you are left with greater freedom to concentrate on other tasks and projects. In this way, you are free to divert all your attention to maintaining and growing your business without affecting your level of customer service. With the help of a virtual receptionist, you do not need to feel tied to the telephone.

  1. Increased Productivity

Having your phone calls answered by a virtual receptionist can have a positive effect on your productivity levels. With the freedom to focus on other work, your productivity levels increase as you can source products, meet clients and plan growth strategies for your business without having to answer phone calls all day. A virtual receptionist gives you the power to focus on the more important jobs without any compromise.

  1. Cost Effectiveness

With a virtual receptionist, you don’t incur any of the cost associated with the recruitment, training and employment of an in-house full-time receptionist. You simply pay a set fee for the service you receive. You also save on paying benefits, vacations and bonuses. What makes the service so attractive is that while you are saving costs in this way, you are also boosting revenue at the same time.

  1. Availability

With the services of a virtual receptionist, you can open up your phone lines outside of regular office hours and at weekends, ensuring that you never miss a customer’s phone call. The service can also be used during peak times of your business which ensures that every call to your business is answered by a live voice and not an automated answering machine.

You should consider employing a virtual receptionist if you wish to expand your business without incurring the costs and responsibilities of employing an in-house receptionist. Your virtual receptionist can be more cost-efficient and you may also benefit from extended hours of service as well as the increased levels of productivity that will inevitably result.

Mark O’Leary is a freelance blogger and social media expert based in Dublin, Ireland. He writes on behalf of several Irish businesses including Kendlebell Kimmage.

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Tips to Lay Out Your Office Space

by admin on August 14, 2014

office layoutWhile there are all sorts of trends when it comes to office design, companies and organizations ultimately have to plan a layout that suits their operation–the way it functions and hopes to function in the future. Planning an office design, therefore, should be a uniquely customizable experience. While a great design firm understands this and “will work with you to understand your requirements”, companies should make sure they communicate their needs in entirety during the planning phase. If you are planning a new office design, the following tips may inspire you when it comes to office layout (Source: Solutions Office Interiors).

Public and Private Spaces

When designing your office floor plan, you’ll have to give some thought to what areas you’ll designate as public areas and what will be private areas for offices and cubicles. Before assigning these areas, give some thought to the way your employees work. Do they spend a lot of time collaborating or are they more isolated when they work? Depending on the nature of your business, you’ll want to plan public and private spaces in accordance with the ways employees are meant to work. In essence, “the type of work will dictate the office layout (Source: http://www.interiorconcepts.com/best-office-layout/).”

Space Efficiency

Whatever the size of your office space–large or small–you’ll want to use that space efficiently. You may have to get creative about storage. Your designer may help you install banks of cabinets that double as seating units. You can also conserve space by eliminating cubicles and grouping people who perform similar tasks together. Technology has also made sharing equipment easier than ever, so you can scale back on items like computer desks and make use of tables instead that double as areas for collaboration.

Organization

Grouping employees who work together often is a great way to keep your office organized and running efficiently. It makes less sense for employees who collaborate every day to maintain offices on opposite sides of the floor. You might also choose to group technology equipment together–copiers and printers, for instance. This makes it easier to maintain and service them and it also helps eliminate gadget clutter throughout the space. Some companies may also wish to lay out the office with an eye toward their clients; offices might be arranged whereby visitors can easily flow through the space.

Movement

Even if you have a small office space, try to avoid a busy floor plan that appears cluttered. Cluttered spaces can feel oppressive for employees who work there all day. It can also be distracting for clients. Design a space that easily allows for movement. Because devices are more mobile than ever, be sure to design a space that fosters this mobility.

Think about these tips and discuss them with your office designer. Certainly, your particular space will influence your floor plan, but you can transform nearly any space to reflect your ideal aesthetic. Modern offices are changing right and left; you, too, can achieve a change that enhances the way your office functions.

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4 Tips to Follow When Looking for a First-Time Job

Now that you’ve graduated from college, it is time to enter the job market. Here are 4 tips for setting goals and finding your career path.

When you are searching for a job, make sure you are taking action. It will not do you any good if you sit at your computer and just scroll through job listings. You should get out there and visit your college career center and talk to your family and friends. Another great tool for actively searching for jobs is asking for referrals and advice from contacts through networking or using social media. Through social media, you can connect with employers that could become a good fit and in the process you can build your professional presence.

No Job is Going to Be Perfect

It is important to remember that there may be no such thing as the “perfect job.” Although it may not be a good idea to settle for anything, you should cast a wide net when searching for types of jobs and potential employers. You may want to decide on a few criteria that is the most important to you in a job and use that to help you decide. Some of the criteria could include a base salary amount in order to pay off debt and rent, commute time, and possibly one aspect you are passionate about such as writing. By having a positive attitude, you could get a great experience out of an average opportunity.

Deciding on a Career Takes Time

There are two things you should do when you can’t decide what direction you should take:

  1. Start somewhere. Instead of becoming paralyzed because you don’t know 100 percent where you want your career to go, start in one place and build from there. A career is not a sprint, it is a marathon. Building a career takes time and may need some tweaking as you go along. Don’t be afraid to dive in somewhere that feels good and then see where it takes you.
  2. Work on Self-Assessment. Make self-assessment a routine part of your day. Consider the news articles you may be drawn to or which careers your family and friends have that get you excited or envious. If you envy the career path a family member or friend has taken, it may be something you want to look into for yourself. Read some books and blogs about self-assessment and careers. In order to find the right career for you, you need to take action and research a lot.

Your Career or Job Doesn’t Have to Be Permanent

If you can’t decide what you want to do or you find yourself with many different interests, do not panic. Finding a career takes time and may take you down many different paths before you find your ideal job. No job is permanent. You are free to change careers when you find something else that you want to explore instead. Although changing jobs every few years may not be for everyone, if that is what you want to do then go for it. You could have several careers over your lifetime or even pursue several of them at the same time. It is completely up to you.

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How A Clean Office Can Improve Productivity

by admin on August 12, 2014

Guest Post

Most individuals devote a certain amount of time to keeping their homes clean. However, it is also important to give thought to this task in the workplace, as a cluttered or unclean environment in an office or other business establishment can reduce productivity and lead to potential liability for the company. In addition, clean, uncluttered surroundings have been proven to enhance the job performance of certain individuals. For this reason, many business owners seek the services of professional office cleaners to help safeguard the health and safety of their employees and clients. The CDC also weighs in on this subject.

Interesting Statistics

Research indicates that a neat and tidy establishment helps to ensure a professional atmosphere in which company representatives and potential clients can conduct business. Effective housekeeping can eliminate many different workplace hazards and help employees to complete their jobs safely and properly. Poor housekeeping often contributes to accidents, leading to the aforementioned liability for the company. This is because clutter and unnecessary objects that have no permanent place frequently hide the hazards that result in personal injuries. In addition, if employees and clients become accustomed to seeing piles of papers and debris or spills, and these are accepted as normal, they may also take more serious health hazards for granted.

Housekeeping Tips

Housekeeping does not merely address cleanliness. It includes removing fire hazards such as paper and cardboard from work areas, ensuring that such areas remain neat and keeping floors and hallways free of slip and fall hazards. It also involves observing essential details such as the layout of the office or business, aisle makers, determining whether storage facilities are adequate and general maintenance. Good housekeeping is also an important part of fire and accident prevention. It is vital for business owners to understand that appropriate housekeeping is a continuous task, as opposed to something that should be considered only when a serious problem occurs and major cleanup is necessary.

Maintaining a Professional Reputation

It is wise for any business owner to create a professional environment in which employees can feel valued and essential to the day to day operations of the company. This in turn will cause a positive influence on potential clients and the business associates of the proprietor. Basic cleanliness is the first step such individuals should take regarding housekeeping procedures. Because first impressions are often the aspect on which potential clients base their decisions, the reputation of the business can suffer significantly if prospective customers observe a dirty environment when they visit the establishment for the first time. This is because such an atmosphere makes it appear as if the company is unorganized and lazy, which is obviously not the image the proprietor wishes to put forth.

Health and Safety Considerations

As previously mentioned, a broad range of health and safety issues can result from a dirty work environment. Muddy floors, unwashed dishes, spills that are not properly cleaned, and dusty shelves or equipment are all situations that can attract vermin, spread bacteria and germs. It is also potentially harmful to anyone who works in or regularly visits the office. Indoor air quality is equally important, according to OSHA.

Between professional cleanings, employees should be encouraged to do their part with regard to keeping the office tidy and free from things such as grimy, sticky desks, dusty equipment and dirty dishes in the break room. Offering workers cleaning equipment, bins for organizing materials and cleaning supplies will help encourage them to make such efforts on a regular basis. Employees should also be urged to report potentially hazardous situations, such as objects left in doorways or overflowing bins. In addition, they should be offered a general education on health and safety in the workplace.

Productivity and Motivation

Most people find it very challenging to meet their goals at work when surrounded by clutter. Additionally, many individuals find it difficult to keep their focus when attempting to accomplish tasks in messy surroundings. A disorganized, dirty office can also make workers feel uncomfortable or even nervous about getting sick due to contact with germs. In certain instances, it can cause some employees to miss work days. Business owners who want to keep their employees motivated and make sure they remain focused and productive must do everything possible to create a comfortable, clean work environment that inspires such reactions. Many business professionals give considerable thought to improving the layout of their offices or other establishments, but they forget basic tasks such as keeping the current environment tidy and neat. This simple step will go a long way toward ensuring that employees are working in an atmosphere that enhances motivation and productivity.

The Benefits of Professional Services

Regular office cleaning accomplishes more than the removal of dust, dirt, and debris. It rids the area of germs and other pollutants that may be lodged in carpets, furniture, work surfaces and other areas. Professional cleaners are skilled in techniques that sanitize and disinfect break rooms, restrooms, kitchens and work areas in order to ensure that they do not become breeding grounds for bacteria.

Most companies employ professional cleaners to ensure that all the necessary tasks are completed to keep the office clean, presentable and safe from potential health and safety hazards. No business owner should fall into the trap of overlooking office cleanliness until he or she is faced with potentially costly liability.

Professional cleaning companies play a vital role in this, as their employees understand the best methods and utilize these techniques to keep the workplace environment in ideal condition. For this reason, it is wise for any commercial property owner to seek the services of professional office cleaners on a regular basis.

 

Annie is a writer working out of Seattle, WA. She focuses on writing for businesses and about travel.

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No matter how awesome your product is or how incredible your services are, you need one essential element: people. If you don’t have fantastic people working with and for you, you’ll only produce mediocre or average results at best.

Doubt it? Ask any call center. YouTube is filled with audio clips of sarcastic or outright rude employees that ruin the company’s reputation, even if they provide an excellent product. So as you can see, it is not about the products alone. Your workforce must be motivated for them consistently want to push themselves to the limit for you and your organization.

We’ve often heard CEOs, managers and supervisors say things like “we pay them, so they should deliver.” This is entirely untrue. A happy employee is an amazing employee. He is magnificent; he is incredible, and he’ll move mountains for you or die trying. He’ll follow you into the “fire” and still stand by your side.

He’ll go to great lengths for you and your organization and never look back, no matter how big the offer he gets outside is. So, what can you do “light ‘em up” and make them happy whilst working for you?

Hardwire them with the Idea of Ownership

Do you know why Jordan Belfort’s employees loved him? It is because the guy made them feel like they were all partners. It did not matter that they were just guys from the street or nobodies before they started working for him. What mattered was the fact that they felt like they were partners in the firm. Jordan Belfort himself made it a point of duty to go consistently to the “pit” to talk to and chat with his “army”. As a result, they were always making great strides and having impressive results.

Consistently Acknowledge and Encourage Your Employees

As an employee, nothing is better than having a boss who recognizes when you make an effort for him or her. It pushes them to even greater heights. It is not just enough to write commendation letters or give them the employee of the month award. You need personally to reach out and talk to your employees.

Have you heard about one or two employees doing great work in the company? Go meet them, congratulate them and tell them how great they’ve been at their job. Do you know what that will do to the morale of the company? It will blow it out of the roof. Your employees will kill for the opportunity to be noticed.

It is kind of like a company I regularly write for. Words of encouragement and acknowledgement from the leadership encourages their writers to want to do better. It’s a little thing, but it sure goes a very long way in boosting company morale. So, be the Jordan Belfort of your organization, no matter your position. Be your team’s cheerleader and coach, and they’ll blossom for you. Be the guy your team members will follow into any battle.

Reward Them Handsomely

No one knew how to do that better than Jordan Belfort. That guy made his employees millionaires. Who wouldn’t kill to for that opportunity? It is not just enough to pay them pennies. Instead, reward them with bumper salaries and packages. A well fed and well paid employee is always a happy employee. Money and perks, while not the key elements, are crucial to the equation of work happiness.

Oh yes, did I mention parties? After a hard year’s, quarter’s work or meeting companywide goals, take them out on a yacht and party. Spoil them and pamper them. Provide your employees with these and Monday will be their favorite day of the week.

 

Oscar King is a human resources manager, who works on ways to keep quality employees on staff for as long as possible. For high performing employees he also recommends rewarding travel incentives, offered by companies such as Get Up and Go. You can learn more about Oscar by visiting his Google+.

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Many people have to go overseas on business, sometimes just for a few days or sometimes for a lot longer. You may go on regular trips yourself to destinations in Europe, Asia or South America.

If you regularly go away on business, one thing that you may want to seriously consider is short business travel insurance, which specialist companies (like Bengo Travel) may be able to help with.

So why might you want to buy this type of coverage for your trip? Some reasons include:

  • if you become ill or suffer an injury and require medical assistance during your business trip overseas, you may find that healthcare abroad can be very expensive. If you require medical repatriation back to your home, this can be very expensive, and a good policy can cover all of these costs for you;
  • if you lose essential items like your laptop during your business trip, you may be able to get the cost reimbursed if you have an insurance policy, and the same goes for any business money you take with you;
  • a delayed departure is one of the things that may be covered on a policy, which can provide you with some financial assistance if you end up waiting at the airport for a long time;
  • trip cancellation coverage may also be included, so if you or someone close to you falls ill, your policy may reimburse you for the cost of your hotel, car hire and other expenses.

These are a few of the basic things that may be included on a business policy. However, every policy is different, and there are a number of other things that may possibly be included, depending on the level of coverage you choose. For example:

  • when you travel abroad, you may take your laptop and other expensive items of equipment with you that you may require for presentations or in meetings. If you lose your equipment or it is stolen while you are abroad, you may be able to get the cost of renting a laptop or other important equipment covered on your policy;
  • if you fall ill or require medical attention while you are on your trip, your insurance may not only cover you for your medical expenses, but it may also be able to cover the cost of sending a colleague out in your place if this is included in your policy;
  • you may have to take important documents with you overseas to use in a meeting or presentation. If you lose any of these essential documents during your time overseas, you may have to get them resent from the office back home, and an insurance policy may cover the cost of the delivery.

These are some of the most important reasons why you may want to take out business cover when you or your employees go on business trips overseas. If you are an employer, you may want to make sure your employees are covered, whereas if you work for yourself or you are the boss, this is something you may want to sort out yourself.

Business trips can be stressful sometimes, so don’t risk them becoming even more stressful. Make sure you consider the benefits of taking out insurance and the risks of failing to get covered. It is your decision whether you take out cover or not, but it can certainly be useful.

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Many Human Resource departments have grand plans to go paperless and to finally rid themselves of those endless file cabinets that have historically outfitted personnel departments. Businesses and organizations alike have been developing extensive sustainability plans that necessitate a drastic reduction in paper use.

For HR departments, however, the transition to paperless has been bumpy. As new technologies emerge, however, and regulations regarding electronic records are adopted, HR departments may be able to go paperless sooner than they thought. Most business fail to realize that there are companies emerging to help you manage your human resources task such as:

  • Employee Onboarding
  • Employee Training
  • Benefits Administration
  • Employee Termination

This technology will help your human resource department centralize employee records without adding file cabinets and HR staff at your office. It will also allow you to use a single platform to store employee information, to allow easy access to employee records so that you can create, view, update, or remove an employee (Source: http://www.baypointbenefits.com/index.php/solutions/technology).

Obstacles for the Paperless HR Department

One of the main reasons HR departments struggle to go paperless is because they have legal obligations to uphold and must store and maintain employee records. There has been considerable confusion about the permissibility of electronic records. However, that is changing and HR departments are beginning to adopt digital technology that allows for advanced electronic record keeping.

Both federal and state agencies have begun to allow digital record keeping. The other obstacle is, of course, change. Many departments are used to the paper method and have been reluctant to abandon it. Although this has begun to change because technology has become more and more popular with the newer generation that are entering the workforce.

Tips to Go Paperless

Even the most reluctant HR departments can be encouraged to give up their paper crutch. New technology makes electronic storage easy and reliable. Departments that are ready to go paperless must ensure that their electronic system is secure and reliable before proceeding. Records must be available for retrieval and maintained at all times.

Just as with paper records, electronic records required policies and procedure for proper maintenance. It may be necessary to procure some assistance in this area so your HR department develops policies for electronic record keeping in accordance with best practices. An expert benefits firm can provide this type of assistance as departments transition from one type of record keeping to another. It’s also essential that whatever plan the department adopts have to be in compliance with state and federal regulations.

Going paperless leads to greater efficiency and organization for any size business, which is why making the switch seems to be a no brainer for most. With superior technology and software available to HR departments today, now is a great time to make the switch to paperless. Don’t forget that switching to paperless is going to help our eco system tremendously! Departments can obtain the compliance they need while improving the nature of their office by simply reaching out to an employee benefits provider.

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Beginners Guide to Bookkeeping

by admin on June 25, 2014

 BeginnersGuideToBookkeeping

 

Guest Post

If you have your own small business, you may need to organize and look after the finances of the business. Maintaining excellent financial records will ensure that you are aware of the money coming in and the money going out of your business account. Bookkeeping. There are reasons to maintain accounts; to help you run and mature your business but also to comply with tax laws.

How to manage and mature your business

Correct bookkeeping lets you:

  • Compare your estimations with your figures at the end of each month to assess your business’s economic state.
  • Examine your costs to establish how to manage the business more inexpensively.
  • Find out your most beneficial customers or products and discover ways to grow your return per customer.
  • Receive an advanced warning when you might be running into money problems – this can help prevent a crisis.

Bookkeeping and tax requirements

  • You have to show investors, the bank managers and the IRS how things are running within your business.
  • You’ll need to retain information and records for certain periods of time as they will be needed to do your tax return or to make any claims.

There are numerous ways to maintain financial records:

  • By keeping the books manually

You can purchase reasonably priced bookkeeping systems from the majority of stationers. However this method of bookkeeping takes time and is not suitable for producing reports.

  • Design a spreadsheet

Some simple spreadsheet skills are required to guarantee the spreadsheets are error free .

  • Let your accountant take care of your bookkeeping.

It might be a costly solution to pay a professional, when you could probably do it yourself. However it can also save you valuable time that will allow you to  work more effectively on other aspects of your business.

  • Personal business package on your computer

There are a variety of software programs to help you with accounting. Explore and find the one that is the right fit for your business

Set up an easy bookkeeping system:

However you choose to store your records, there are a few certain things you must do:

  • Have two files for your invoices, one for purchases and the other for sales. Assign a sole reference number to every invoice that is coming in and going out, make sure to note it on your computer or in your books.
  • File the invoices in the appropriate order. Doing this will help you find paper work fast if there is a VAT or tax assessment.
  • Maintain records of your expenses and make sure to get and keep receipts. If you are VAT registered, it is crucial to keep the VAT receipts, otherwise you cannot reclaim the VAT back.
  • In one part of your cash book, log the money you have paid. Record your expenses. Assign another column for the money you collect and keep a record of each transaction.  Divide your expenses into columns for example utilities, rent, insurance etc.
  • At the end of each month add the totals of each column and bring them forward on to a new page for the next month.

Outsourcing your bookkeeping can save you money and free up valuable time, allowing you to mature your business without the hassle of hiring staff. If handling the books isn’t for you, delegating is always a great idea.

About the author:
Carlo Cretaro is a freelance blogger and social media consultant working on behalf of BJ Kenny Accountants who are a leading accountancy firm based in Dublin.

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