Without a doubt, paperwork is the one organising challenge that comes up again and again.  Whether you run a business or a household or your life, paperwork can be problematic.  What do you keep?  Where do you keep it?  How long do you keep it for?  Rumours and misinformation run riot.  So here’s a very simple starting point for taking control of your paperwork.

Reduce the confusion.  Get really good information.  For accurate advice about financial and tax obligations, consult a financial adviser or tax accountant, as well as the Australian Tax Office – www.ato.gov.au – or the relevant tax authority where you live.

Rethink your policies around what to keep.  Based on the information you’ve received, what will your policy be around paperwork?  Policies will help with the everyday decisions.  Apart from financial records, things to keep will include receipts for warranty or return purposes.  One policy that will help with keeping on top of paperwork is setting a regular time each week to deal with it.

Reorganise your files so you can find what you need if and when you need it.  Good filing is about retrieval, not putting away.  When you name a file folder, make it a name that makes sense to you, and be as specific as possible.


If you found this topic useful, you may also like to read about reducing, rethinking and reorganising email here.



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