Most business owners reach a point where they are ready to expand, and that can look different for everyone. Sometimes your business pushes you to make the decision, and other times you will know that the time is right.
If you are in the middle of starting your business, you can still benefit from being organised and in control too.
Organisation doesn’t come easily to everyone. Here are some tips and platforms that can help you to get organised.
Freelancers and small businesses have a history of misplacing receipts and putting things to the side when it comes to finances. When tax time comes around, they pull the pile of paper out and hope for the best.
Unfortunately, this is a long way around and can really impact how you do your taxes and set you off on the back-foot for the future.
While accountants and bookkeepers are magic, they cannot turn lousy expense keeping and no track record into something useful for tax purposes.
You have a few options to help you keep on top of your expenses and help your bookkeeper and accountant out.
Here are a few options:
• QuickBooks Online
• Sage one
• Zoho books
Most of these platforms have a free option that can let you get a feel of how they work and if you will get a benefit from using them.
If you have a virtual assistant or team members who need access to your accounts, you need to ensure that they are protected.
LastPass keeps your passwords protected and allows your team members to access the information.
Using a single password for everything can mean running the risk of having information stolen or being locked out of your account/s.
If you have sole access to a computer, then you can allow the computer to save passwords for you. This will make it quicker to access your accounts and reduce the amount of information that you need to retain.
For extra protection of your passwords, you can use an app like 1password.
Are you forever trying to remember what work is due and when? Or perhaps you have missed a Zoom meeting or fired an email off a little bit too late.
Finding a way to keep everything in a neat order will help ensure you are where and when you need to be.
If you are running a team and need to keep them organised, then Sling can be a great option.
It is important that you should treat all of your digital storage how you would treat your office space. Make sure that you carefully name your files and put those files into the correct folder. If you don’t specify what the file is, you will waste precious time looking for them in the future.
Label each of your folders by the client, and then add each item of work into those folders. Ensure that you add a reference number, the company name, and what the file contains into the name of each file.
As well as storing your files on an HDD, you can double down on the security and use cloud storage too. This will keep your files secure and accessible to clients, your team, and yourself with ease.
Dropbox is one of the most popular options for cloud storage. You can create a link to share the files, and they can be downloaded by your clients when needed.
Messy office space looks bad for you and your clients. If you don’t have an office but want to appear as though you do (which can be a great option), there are many benefits of a virtual office.
If you work in a physical office space, then it is important that you keep it clean.
It may be that you need to hire a cleaner to take care of this for you, or set aside at least one day a week to give the space a deep clean. Misplaced documents and misplaced notes can be a nightmare when you have a client on the line, and you need to relay information quickly.
Social Media Campaigns
Kick your social media up a notch and start making it part of your overall marketing plan. Social media is a free and fast form of marketing, but there is a balance to be had between what you share as sales, value and information.
The general rule is that 80% should be content and value, and 20% should be sales focused.
Social media, when done in real-time, can be very time-consuming. You can cut the time down by taking one or two days a month to schedule your campaigns.
Although you can use a virtual assistant to take care of these things, it is better that you understand the platforms you have at your disposal.
Here are several social media scheduling tools that can help:
• Social Sprout
Plan and schedule your social media ahead of time so that you can quickly and easily manage your social media campaigns.
- Create Amazing Social Media Posts with Design Wizard
- The Pinterest Strategy Guide To Beat Algorithm (For Your Business)
- I tried Gary Vee’s $1.80 Instagram strategy for 30 days Challenge
Billing clients by the hour means you need to keep track of how much time you are spending.
Even if you charge by the day or by the project, tracking the time you spend can give you an insight into how much you are spending and where.
It might be that you are investing too much time on smaller details and elongating your working days.
Here are some great apps that can help you manage your time better:
• Rescue time
• Fresh books
• Due time tracking
Much of what makes for a good organisation is that you can set it up and automate it. Giving yourself enough time to plan campaigns, work on client projects and ensure that you remain competitive and professional at all times.
Make use of all of the free tools that the internet has to offer and create a system that works for you.