Searching and gathering information are tasks that take up 19% of an employee’s average workweek. As a freelancer, you can avoid losing valuable time with a good record keeping and management system. Retrieval of information should be at your fingertips to increase productivity and improve your bottom lines. Here’s why it is imperative to keep and maintain records when you’re an independent contractor.
Client Records to Manage and Maintain Relationships
Keeping good records allows you to pull information quickly to do your work whether it’s to respond to a query or to clarify data. It is vital as well to maintain accurate documentation pertaining to your clients. For example, if you’re a legal adviser on a retainer basis for a small business, it is essential that the employer is up to date on their workers’ compensation insurance. They should also follow record keeping rules to ensure the legality of every client. An original copy of the signed contract between you and the client should also be available. In the event of miscommunications, it is helpful to have your contract on hand so that you can refer to the scope of the services that you are supposed to provide. Furthermore, should your client decide to expand the work, referring to the original quote helps justify an increased rate since it is an extra task. You must also keep track of time and hours worked. Tracking sheets will demonstrate the number of hours that you have worked on an assignment. Payment receipts as well as invoices should be on file so that you can trace information seamlessly.
Business Monitoring to Save Time and Money
Not only should you become meticulous in record keeping documents for your clients, you should also create a separate archive for your freelancing business. Proposals that you submitted in bids, signed contracts, agreements, and addendum to existing conventions must be kept. Expenses that you incur in performing your duties and responsibilities must be recorded in detail. The information is valuable when claiming exemptions and deductions, that is, when you file your income declaration.
It also offers a precise overview of how much you earned, determines operating costs to sustain your activities, and justifies purchases related to the business. To simplify matters, consider digitizing data so that you can easily retrieve information, as needed. There are several software programs that can track sales, accounts payable, taxes, or invoice customers. Some programs also offer the possibility to create graphs and charts and manage inventory. For documents, scan, create back-ups, and store them in secure places such as physical locations or in the cloud.
Record keeping and management are vital aspects of a freelancing business. These activities assist in managing client relationships, keep track of your work, and save time and money.
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