Tips for Staying Organised as a Contractor

Staying organised

Organisation is paramount to a productive and stress free contracting lifestyle. Working in a disorganised environment can cause stress, lead to mistakes and can even cause you to miss deadlines.

This is also true when it comes to managing your accounts. Of the 359 contractors we surveyed, 17% said they had lost receipts and 11% had paid too much tax and 8% had made a late or incorrect payment to HMRC.

Read our top tips to on how to manage your work and better organise your accounts.

File away your documents

Losing important documents can mean you miss the deadline to pay taxes (7% of our contractors were guilty of this) and could incur a fine of at least £100. To avoid this, you should invest in some folders to keep all of your documents safe. This is a small step but can save a lot of time in the long-term and avoid any deadlines being missed.  

HMRC require you to keep 5 years’ worth of business records, including expenses, proof of income and VAT records. You can visit HMRC’s website for a full list of what evidence needs to be kept. 

Manage your workload

Contractors have a greater degree of control about the amount of work they accept but the compulsion can often be to take on too much. Having too many jobs on the go can lead to a messy workspace. Making time to more effectively manage your workload will ensure that you don’t let things become cluttered and disorganised. 

Use technology to your advantage

We’re expecting more from technology than ever and this is no different in the workplace. The number of apps and digital programmes available to help you stay organised and streamline your work is always growing. Using a digital workspace is well worth considering and can help you to stay organised. 

Some of our favourites include:

Asana – This application will allow you to organise and keep track of your work. You can also collaborate with your employees and easily manage where a project is up to.

Evernote – You can synch your notes across all of your devices, meaning you can manage your time and work just as effectively from home.

Google Calendar – This will allow you to manage meetings, appointments and you can also better organise your time.

Allow yourself time to relax

Working too hard can be detrimental to your organisation and it’s important for contractors to step away from work to relax. 

Get into a routine and stick to it - this not only includes work, but making the time to switch off when you’re finished for the day. If you are guilty of letting clutter build up, you could set some time aside each week to clean and sort through your documents. Doing so will help you to stay organised and keep your workspace clean.

Get help from an accountant

Entrusting your finances to an accountant will give you more time to focus on growing your business. As the UK’s largest contractor accountant, SJD are well-placed to provide help and advice with your taxes. 

For more information about our accountancy packages or to see how SJD can support you, simply call us on 01442 330165 or email newbusiness@sjdaccountancy.com.  

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