Starting a business is something that many people dream about doing, yet very few actually turn their money making ideas into a reality. If you have shunned the nine to five, you’ve handed in your resignation to your boss, and you’re ready to embark on the road to entrepreneurship, then you probably need some pointers to ensure that you don’t become overwhelmed with the tasks you need to complete to ensure that your startup hits the ground running. You may have some ideas for your financial funding options, you might have honed your business vision, and you may have your social media accounts set up and ready to launch. However, have you considered the most tedious of aspect to your startup - your admin?
Yes, you might yawn, but getting the paperwork, documentation and administrative part of company formation sorted out rather than languishing in drawers can help you save time and money. Developing good business habits now, can save you from those bad habits creeping in at a later date. Take a look at these three simple ways to keep on top of your business admin.
1. Company Formation
When you first begin to seriously think about launching your own startup, you will need to look into the best format for your company. You may choose to start small and work as a sole trader. Doing this can be incredibly simple, you don’t have to worry too much about taxation issues and keeping your books in check is relatively straightforward to do on your own. However, if you’re keen to save money on tax and you want to make your company more efficient, then starting an LLC could be the more appropriate option. By forming a limited liability company from the get-go, there may be less to worry about in the future as and when you wish to change the formation of your company. Administratively, your paperwork can be a little more complex so employing the services of an accountant may be necessary, but this will be more than offset by the cash you save in tax.
While outsourcing is still thought of as a dirty word in some startup circles, these entrepreneurs are not saving as much time and money as they can. By taking some of the admin out of your own hands and into the hands of an external company that specializes in specific business functions, you have less paperwork to worry about. It is the most tedious of tasks that can be the most time consuming and laborious. As and when you hire staff, you will need to provide payslips and ensure that your payroll system is an accurate and well oiled machine. Rather than risk human error on site, you can relinquish this administrative task to an offsite outsourced company. They will take care of the taxation calculations, any 401(k) obligations and the physical payslips leaving you with more time to focus on the more pressing aspects of seeing your startup thrive.
There are other aspects of your business that you may wish to outsource such as IT troubleshooting, appointment booking or social media marketing. Just make sure that you weigh up the cost of employing specialist agencies with the money and time you may save in the long run. Outsourcing, when used appropriately, can be an entrepreneur's best friend.
If you are a little bit of a scatterbrain, you leave things until the last minute, or you are a master of the art of procrastination, you need to change these habits quickly to ensure that your business has any chance of success. It’s vital that you develop a routine. It might sound old school, but get yourself a calendar and pencil in your weekly tasks. Stick to this schedule like clockwork. Set aside the same afternoon each week to pay invoices, sign contracts or collate documentation. Keep your files up to date, ensure that you are rigorous with your filing systems and maintain your professionalism across all of your business tasks. You wouldn’t turn up to an important meeting with a client late, so don’t pay your supplier in a tardy manner.
Being an entrepreneur can be one of the most fulfilling experiences, both professionally and personally. However, you need to recognize that not every aspect of your business functions will be glamorous or exciting. You need to take the rough with the smooth and utilize this guide to help you stay organized and keep on top of every aspect of your business admin.