Workflow Systems: The 1099 Aftermath

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Your workflow systems affect everything you do. For example, did you make it through the January 1099 madness okay?

In most of the TFB webinars this past year we've been focusing on systematizing and streamlining workflow in one form or another, and with good reason.

Whether your 1099 January crunch went smoothly and was reasonably low stress, or if it was crazy and hair-pulling, likely your experience had much to do with the systems you have put in place. Even if that's the system of trying to figure out what the next step is to get it all done before the deadline.

When the pressure is on we get to see just how organized we've been all year long (or not) when it comes to getting the needed info from our clients. Do you see some ways to improve your processes for 2018? (Yeah, me too!)

Systems and repeatable structure, while on their own are far from exciting and sexy (I mean, who really gets excited about asking clients' vendors for Forms W-9?), the results they produce can make or break your business in January (along with your sanity). And when it comes to improving systems, often pain is an effective teacher!

To plan out a workflow that works (or is improved) it only takes a few minutes while you're feeling ‘inspired'. Just use these simple steps:

  1. Draw out the key functions that lead to the results you're after, whether with good old fashioned paper and pen or some electronic means (I like Bubbl.us for quick mindmap-style workflows)
  2. Consider where the sticking points were and drill down to the specific tasks involved and brainstorm solutions to where things get stuck
  3. Come up with a checklist and schedule for doing it better next time
  4. Put your system to the test
  5. Rinse and repeat steps 1-4

So let's continue focusing on improving systems and efficiency because without it, running a profitable bookkeeping business is only going to get harder as the pricing pressure on compliance work is pushed downward. We need to get efficient and effective in the day-to-day bookkeeping processes so we can then grow to higher value client services.

What process do you go through in order to improve your systems?

By the way, I've started a private Facebook group specifically for comparing notes on both workflow and the apps we use to streamline and automate our services. If you'd like to join us (it's free), please do!

Let's talk workflow and apps on Facebook

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Freelance bookkeeper, trainer and consultant who works with internet savvy business owners and bookkeeping professionals to maximize cash flow and support true win-win business success.

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