Getting organized is a great tool to achieve a variety of professional and personal goals. However, one of the best returns on your investment in staying organized is more money in your pocket, right?
This is such an important topic that it will be covered in two parts. In this post, we’ll discuss expense tracking and mileage documentation. Next time, we will cover billable hours and collecting money owed to you.
Do you want to donate money to the IRS or your employer? Probably not! Then, don’t leave money on the table.
Track Your Expenses
- Write notes on the top of credit card receipts. Note what the expense was for, the client with whom you had lunch, or to which account the expense should be attributed. Avoid the need to conduct a forensic investigation of your “mystery expenses.”
- Carry a pocket-sized envelope for receipts when traveling on business. Keep your receipts together so that you don’t lose money…I mean receipts.
- Keep business and personal accounts separate if you are a business owner. Mingling business and personal funds together in your checking accounts and credit cards makes tracking business expenses much more difficult than it needs to be.
- Categorize expenses in your small business accounting software according to the tax line to which the expense should be applied. I use Quickbooks for this purpose, and running my year-end tax report is a breeze. Let me know if you need a recommendation for a good Quickbooks trainer.
- Use an app! Here are several options. If your company wants a corporate-wide solution for app-based expense reporting, consider Abukai or Concur. My husband’s company uses Concur and he takes pictures of his receipts with his phone to submit them for reimbursement.
- Use a visual or auditory reminder in your car to prompt yourself to note your business mileage. Tie a string on your steering wheel, turn your radio up before removing your car key, or put a sign in your driver’s seat that says “Don’t lose money, dummy.”
- Remember that mileage attributed to charitable work and moving can be tax deductible and should be tracked.
- Use an app! Read about several mileage tracking options here.
- Call your voice mail (or your assistant’s) with your starting and finishing odometer readings and track mileage on a spreadsheet at your desk
Are you losing money due to inaccurate expense and mileage tracking? Please contact me today. You are worth it!
Are you ready to get serious about this workplace productivity thief?
Read my eBook Reduce Interruptions…you don’t have to be a victim.
Melissa Gratias (pronounced “Gracious”) used to think that productivity was a result of working long hours. And, she worked a lot of hours. Then, she learned that productivity is a skill set, not a personality trait. Now, Melissa is a productivity expert who coaches and trains other businesspeople to be more focused, balanced, and effective. She is a prolific writer and speaker who travels the world helping people change how they work and improve how they live. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 912-417-2505. Sign up to receive her productivity tips via email.