Small Business Tips: How to Organize and File Financial Records
Is filing your financials not your forte? Here are a few small business tips that will help you get your financial records in order – and keep them that way.
Accounting and bookkeeping aren’t the most glamorous parts of running a business, but they are an absolute necessity. Good bookkeeping practices and keeping organized financial records clarifies the business’s current financial state. It also makes financial planning easier and simplifies tax reporting. If you’re a new business owner, here are a few tips that will help you get your financial records in order – and keep them that way.
Benefits of Organization
If your filing system is a mess, you know how difficult to find a specific document or receipt when you need it. It’s inconvenient, frustrating, and it could cost you in the long run. Organizing your financial records, however, offers several benefits:
- Easily track and evaluate the company’s finances.
- Forecast and plan future financial moves.
- Evaluate data to make good business decisions.
- Comply with Canada Revenue Agency
- Save time, energy and resources.
Types of Records to Keep
Individuals that operate a business, or engage in commercial activity are required to keep records of a number of business transactions. Separate your records into categories, and file them together in monthly folders. In general, you’ll want to hold on to all of your records and supporting documents for at least six years. You’ll want to keep track of:
- Receipts for a payments, whether paper or electronic.
- Details of the company’s expenses and sales revenue.
- Details of the company’s assets, cash-on-hand, and credit accounts.
- Payroll details including salaries, benefits, etc.
- Any taxes you’ve collected and paid.
Record Storage Tips
In the past, a simple filing cabinet with file folders inside was all a company needed to keep their records organized and safe. Most businesses these days have both paper and electronic records to store. Maintaining adequate storage space, and organizing documents is all about blending the old and new.
- Store paper documents within file cabinets, or file boxes in a cool, dark place.
- Transfer paper records to digital form as a security measure against loss.
- Digital receipts and other documents should be stored on stand-alone storage devices.
- Cloud storage services are an excellent way to ensure records are backed-up and safe.
- Restrict access to record storage, so that records remain secure.
As a business owner, you have full schedule just trying to keep up with the daily tasks of running your business. Record keeping, and other bookkeeping and accounting tasks, are likely not your area of expertise. You’re not alone. In fact, many business owners choose to outsource their accounting needs, rather than adding to their already busy workload.
If you’re struggling to keep up with record keeping, reporting, or any other bookkeeping tasks, contact us. We specialize in helping business owners successfully manage these important business activities.
E&E Professional Accountants has years of experience in assisting businesses with their accounting needs. We are founded and managed by a an experienced corporate auditor and a former CRA tax auditor. Feel free to contact us for assistance with all your accounting and bookkeeping needs.