2016 is quickly coming to an end. Give yourself the very best Christmas present this year - peace of mind through organisation. Remember that empowering feeling when you can finally see the top of your desk after it's been buried in paperwork? Recall the joy of an empty inbox? No? Then you've obviously been letting things slide. It's time to get organised.
Read on for five handy tips to help you wrap this year up with a big, red bow and start 2017 with a clean slate. Prepare to be the most effective and efficient you, that you can be!
Ditch the Paper and Get Organised
Tackle that stack (or stacks) of paperwork in your office. Create three piles, "To Do", "To File", and the all-important WPB, "the Wastepaper Bin". Throw out what needs to go and sort out the rest in order of priority. Next, assess the clutter on your desk and donate or toss anything that is redundant or you haven't used in the past year.
Pro Tip: Use a receipt management scanner or app to digitally file all of that pesky paper. If you're old school and you want to stay that way, purchase an expanding file for each year and file your tax related paperwork directly from your "To Do" pile.
Clean up and consolidate your email. Create files for important emails and delete anything superfluous. Clean up and organise your desktop. File all of your important files into a logical and efficient hierarchy. Delete any apps or programs from your phone or PC that distract you from efficient time management.
Pro Tip: If you have multiple email addresses, use a mail collector feature to link them all to one account.
Integrate Administrative Tasks
Evaluate your current process for invoicing, payment processing, expense recording, project tracking, payroll processing, and inventory management. Cutting edge bookkeeping software such as Xero can be directly linked to your online bank accounts, eliminating redundant and tedious data entry. Multiple users, including accountants and bookkeepers, can access your real-time information.
Pro Tip: Use cloud-based tools to share and save documents to eliminate time spent emailing documents when collaborating with others.
Streamline Your Time and Team
Get all of your employees on the same page with a shared calendar app. There are many free or low-cost options out there, with a multitude of features including reminders, the delineation of professional and personal calendars, to-do lists and more.
Pro Tip: Colour coordinate events based on priority.
Make time for downtime. A well-rested mind is a focussed and efficient mind. Stress can cause havoc at this time of the year, especially when you have end of the year deadlines looming.
Pro Tip: Designate at least 30 minutes a day to completely unplug from all electronics and communication devices.