Using Your Computer to Keep Your Business Organized
As a small business owner you may fit into one of many categories. Your business may be located outside of your home, or you may be operating a home business. In either case you may be relying on one laptop for both business and personal use. If this is the case then you really need to be focused on keeping your business records organized and separate from your personal data.
While computers are a great asset they really can become cluttered quickly. A lot of time can be wasted in trying to find business information and important documents throughout a business day if you are not organized.
You first need to look at what programs you are using for your business. It may be a few or you may have many. You may use word for your documents, excel for your spreadsheets, and an accounting package for your financials. When you are creating data in each of these programs the files can be retained within them.
Where it really can become messy is when you are using word for your documents. In this case you want to start with two main folders with one being for business and one for personal.
Then within these two main folders you can create additional folders. Some people like to remain as paperless as possible, and will scan as many documents as they can into their computer. These often end up in the image program. What you may want to do is open up a applicable folder in your business folder and transfer the scanned documents into them. This way you have everything in one area and it is easily assessable come tax time.
There are tons of free business software on the internet but before you really start using these to help keep your business organized you must make sure that they are malware free, and reliable. There is nothing worse than entering a ton of data into a free software program only to discover that it has limitations because it is free, and you are being forced to buy it to continue.
When it comes tax time the more organized you are with your financials the better job your tax accountant can do for you. If you are unorganized then your could potentially lose out on some viable tax credits or end up with a incomplete return. This is only going to cost you money, time and be a real hassle.