How organized are your small business bookkeeping papers? Are they all in one place or do you have them in files in a filing cabinet? There are benefits of creating a well-organized small business bookkeeping binder like the one I am going to discuss today.
Five Benefits of making a well-organized small business bookkeeping binder.
First, it allows you to keep all your business papers all in one place.
Second, Employee files needs to be organized well. Visit Record-keeping policy from this HR website.
Third, Payroll liability reports and payments must be well documented for reference. So keeping them in one place secured is your best bet.
If there is an emergency, you can grab the binder quickly and you will have all the documents you need for that year.
And, for tax audit purposes, it will make it easier if you have all your business bills and statements in one place as well.
This binder will make it easy for you to find the papers you need when you need it.
I hope this convinces you that you should set up this binder. If you are ready, let me show you how to make it.
This post talks about how I generally make this small business bookkeeping binder. If you want help making this binder, see my information at the end of this post.
What is in a well-organized small business bookkeeping binder?
I start with a heavy-duty binder that has plastic sleeves in the front, back and inside the binder. Your binder may consist of some or all of these sections below. I usually start with a 3 inch or 4 inch binder and several 8 count clear tabs with pockets. A hole puncher is also needed because all your papers will be hole punched to keep them securely in the binder.
Now it is time to review the sections that could be in your well-organized small business bookkeeping binder.
(Below are examples of the products I use for my clients from Amazon.com. I receive a small commission at no additional charge to you if you click through and buy these items.)
All Employer ID numbers, passwords and logins in paper form if needed: Placing all the passwords and logins in one place will really help you when you need them. You can leave this out if you have a password management app.
Bill Pay checklist: Create a list of all your bills and when they are due. Having a spreadsheet placed inside the binder will remind you of what needs to be done and when it is due.
QuickBooks reports section in the binder: If you use QuickBooks online or desktop version, you know about QuickBooks Reports like your Profit and Loss and other reports. Well, this section is where you will place these printed reports. Monthly and quarterly reports are fine in this section. It’s a quick way to see the reports without logging into QuickBooks or turning on your computer.
Payroll Summary reports section: If you have payroll, you will need this section. A payroll company will send you these reports as you generate payroll. You must keep them handy so hole punching them and putting them in the binder is a good idea. If you want, you can put your payroll reports in another binder altogether to save space in this one.
Federal 941: This is the Federal withholdings (Federal, S.S., and Medicare) that you will be collecting from your employees and sending them to the IRS each month. Add the confirmation submissions and the quarterly reports in this section.
Federal 940 unemployment: This section is for the Federal unemployment that your company and your staff pay. This should have its own section too. The yearly report can be placed here as well.
State Earned Income tax: This is your state section for earned income tax you will collect for your staff. Keep the quarterly reports here as well as your payment confirmations.
State unemployment tax: this section is for your state’s unemployment tax you collect from your staff and the business’ payroll. This should have its own section that includes the quarterly submissions and confirmations.
Local Earned Income tax: This tax is what you collect if your staff lives in an area that collects local earned income tax. This section will include the confirmation numbers and quarterly reports.
Local Services Tax: This is a tax that pertains to where an employee/owner works. Some cities and towns do not have this tax.
State Sales Tax: Do you sell products? This section should be in your binder. All your submitted monthly or quarterly or every six months reports should be hole-punched in this section.
Petty Cash tracking section: Do you do petty cash tracking? This could be a section in your small business bookkeeping binder too.
Bills section: This could be the section where you store your actual bills for your business. Or, you can store them in a covered accordion folder to keep them organized and contained.
W-2s and 1099misc reports: This section is for all your completed printed and submitted informational reports.
By the end of the year, all these items will be in one place fastened to the binder that you can bring to your accountant which will reduce the amount of time it takes to gather this information.
Now, doesn’t this binder make more sense to do now at the beginning of the year so you don’t have to gather it in a mad rush at tax time? I think so.
If you need help creating this small business bookkeeping binder, feel free to contact me. I have been doing solopreneur bookkeeping for over 10 years, and with my office organizing skills, my bookkeeping services include my ability to do paper organizing. Many other bookkeepers do not offer this service.
Let’s continue the conversation, do you have a bookkeeping binder for your business? Please leave a comment below.