Poor workflow at your accounting firm can impact not only your productivity at work but your home life as well. We’ve all had stressful days at the office that bleed into the rest of our day – and how often do you find yourself canceling plans because work is piling up? Your work is important and valuable, but so are your family, friends, and mental health. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice other areas of your life.
Luckily, improving your accounting workflow might be able to help in all aspects of your life. You know the old adage “time is money”. So, why are you wasting your time with inefficient procedures and outdated systems? You already know how improving your workflow can improve revenue and efficiency, but here are some of the other ways your quality of life can improve from better accounting systems.
Reducing scope creep
Scope creep might be the scariest words imaginable for accounting professionals. We’ve all seen it happen before: you start a project, bright-eyed and naive… and then reality sets in. Suddenly, a quick job is taking a lot longer than you had originally planned. This can cut into your time and profits. The solution? Establishing a better workflow! Scope creep can be reduced through proactive scheduling, written checklists, good communication, and hard boundaries. Once you’ve got your workflow working for you, you can better assess how long projects will take and lose less time in your days.
When you have a good and accurate idea of how long a project will take, your home life will no longer revolve around your work schedule. Clear, written procedures will help you here. You won’t have to cancel last minute on your friends or wait around so long to make plans that no one is available. Instead, you can plan out your day pretty accurately. There’s nothing worse than having to rearrange your entire day because an app crashed on you or your systems couldn’t account for how long it would take to receive an important document.
Drawing lines between work and home
During the pandemic, a lot of companies and people found themselves conducting business from their living rooms. While working from home is definitely a great option for some accounting firms, it can be overwhelming to make a sudden switch. It’s easy to underestimate how mentally draining it can be when your workspace and living spaces are one and the same. One of the ways a better accounting workflow can improve your life is by establishing clear boundaries. Make a point to confine work to the office.
Need a place to start?
Here are some avenues you can take at your accounting firm to improve your daily workflow:
- Clearly define each team member’s roles and responsibilities: Sometimes when your responsibilities aren’t clear, it can be easy to take on tasks that don’t suit your position or tasks you aren’t as qualified to do as someone else. To avoid this, make sure everyone knows what their role at the firm is.
- Ditch the paper: Paper creates clutter. It gets lost. It takes up space and time to look for. Consider digital storage that will make accessing, storing, and sharing documents easier and faster.
- Write down clear procedures: Written checklists and procedures can save you a lot of time. You don’t need to waste time on unnecessary steps or deciding your next course of action if it’s already written down.
- Update your tech: Outdated tech might be one of the main things holding you back. Take a look around and see if there are better software options available, figure out how you can reduce the number of apps you switch between every day, and which outdated tech is slowing you down.
A work-life balance doesn’t have to be difficult to maintain. You can start separating the two by bettering your work practices so that your job never has to spill over into your home life. Good workflow can always help keep you from working off the clock.