Organise Your Office!

How many times have you walked into your office intending to get it organised?  How many times have you then told yourself that it can be done tomorrow?  If you really knew how much time that disorganisation cost you, it would be on top of your to do list!  A well-planned, well-organised office offers the best of all worlds — convenience, comfort and that professional image that drives us to succeed.

Think about how you would feel walking into this:

You would feel pretty happy working in a space that looks like this right?  Less anxiety, less clutter, less wasted time and much more control.  It doesn’t have to be hard and it doesn’t have to take forever.  Here’s a few simple DIY steps for office organisation:

Step 1 Give yourself a WEEK.

Yes, a WEEK. You will feel SO overwhelmed so don’t feel like you have to tackle everything in ONE day.  But DO set a deadline. If you give yourself a month, it will take a month.

Step 2 Set up your systems first.

Knowing where you want things to end up at the end will help you when you get stuck.  Start by labelling 3 bags “Recycle”, “Shred” & “Trash”.

Then get some shoe boxes label them “To File”, “To Do” & “To Return”.

Finally, get a few more boxes for categories specific for your office.

Step 3 Purge your office 

De-clutter, empty, shred, get rid of everything that you don’t need or want. Look around. What haven’t you used in a while? Take one area at a time. If it doesn’t work, send it out for repair or toss it. If you haven’t used it in months and can’t think of when you’ll actually need it, out it goes.

Step 4 Establish work “zones”

Decide what type of activity happens in each area of your office. You’ll probably have a main workspace (most likely your desk,) a reference area (filing cabinet, shelves, binders,) and a supply area (closet, shelves or drawers.) Place the appropriate equipment and supplies  in the proper area as much as possible.

Step 5 Keep your desk clear

Remove everything, clean it thoroughly and put back only those items that are essential for daily use.

Your alternative option

If you live in the Melbourne Metro area, then you’re in luck because AJS Secretarial Solutions is now offering onsite office organisation!  So if you’re still having trouble getting motivated to organise your office, you know who to call!  Services include:

  • Office set-up and space planning
  • Paper management and de-cluttering
  • Establishing mail management systems
  • Modifying or creating file systems
  • Action item filling system assembly

How a Not For Profit Organisation can use a Virtual Assistant

A loyal, long time client of mine recently made the difficult decision to close their doors.  They were a not for profit organisation relying on volunteers to keep their organisation running.  They were a passionate group of ladies and had almost 300 members to their College. Despite their “day jobs”, they committed their time to run this organisation for many years, but recently it became more and more difficult to find people willing to form a Committee.

I began assisting this particular College back in 2008.  My initial work was general administrative jobs and assisting in the processing of registrations for their annual conference.  Over the years, my role grew and I helped in a number of areas particularly focusing on their conference and their memberships.  It was a rewarding experience especially since I began working with them not long after I started AJS Secretarial Solutions.

There are so many advantages for a not for profit to hire the services of a Virtual Assistant.  Consider the benefits of lightening the load of volunteers, and ensuring jobs are completed in a timely manner.  The main advantage is that you have access to experienced, well qualified professional support staff with NO COMMITMENT!  This is a fantastic resource and can make the difference to keeping your organisation motivated and happy without compromising your values.

Some types of jobs a VA can look after include:

  • Maintaining databases
  • Processing memberships
  • Keeping track of expenses and income
  • Conference / Event organisation including processing of registrations, resource development (brochures, flyers, programmes etc), name tags, chasing up payments and providing critical information about the event when it is over (number of attendees, demographic information, income and expenses etc).
  • Developing and editing of resources
  • Mail Outs
  • Newsletters

All of this and more is available to you at a reasonable hourly rate, without the need for you to pay employment associated costs. It is very low risk, you can trial a VA with less critical tasks at first until you build trust.  You can use a VA for a regular number of hours each week, or as and when you need them.  Outsourcing work in this way is catching on in the private sector, but charities, voluntary organisations and not for profits can benefit from this new way of working too.

Preparing for the EOFY

Think it’s too early to start preparing for the end of financial year?  Think again!  June 30 is almost upon us, but if you’re like most small businesses and have all of your receipts stuffed in a shoe box, it might be time to start thinking about what needs to be done to prepare for that annual visit to your accountant.

If you’re dreading this time consuming task, then think about outsourcing it to a Virtual Assistant.  We can help you sort through your receipts, do your monthly bank reconciliations, list your debtors and creditors and get all your documents prepared for your accountant.

And if you still don’t want the hassle or worry of doing this job month by month in the new financial year, a Virtual Assistant can help you keep on top of your bookkeeping requirements by doing these jobs at month end, so it’s not something that you have to worry about at the end of each financial year.

It doesn’t matter what the size of your business is.  Keeping proper records is important not only for calculating your income tax and BAS payments, but also for determining the financial health of your business.  Below are some tips to help you get organised.

Collect your receipts

Organising your receipts can be painful, but doing it now can save you time later on. All business owners are required to keep records for 5 years in either electronic or paper form. These include:

  • sales records (i.e. invoices, vouchers, receipts, credit card statements and cash register tapes)
  • purchase/expense records (invoices, receipts, cheque butts, credit card and bank statements)
  • employee records such as wages and superannuation details, and PAYG Payment Summaries
  • end of year tax records (i.e. motor vehicle expenses, debtors and creditors list, stocktake sheets and asset purchases).

 Organise your records

This is the list of what you need to prepare:

  • Listing of Accounts Receivables (debtors or people that owe you money) as at 30th June
  • Listing of Accounts Payables (creditors or people that you owe money to) as at 30th June
  • Review your Accounts Receivable (debtors) and write off invoices which you deem cannot be recovered.
  • Employees PAYG Payment Summaries
  • A stock take on 30th June
  • Employees PAYG Payment Summaries
  • Employees Superannuation records

Review & Reconcile

When reviewing your financial records, there are a few basic things you should undertake.

  • Prepare bank reconciliation for each bank account. This will compare the transactions in your records against your bank statement.
  • Missing transactions can be added to ensure accuracy
  • Duplicate transactions are easier to find and correct
  • Unpresented amounts are identified and will provide the business with a true bank account balance
  •  You can make changes to earlier transactions. However, keep your accountant in the loop. They may have an impact on your next BAS or require your old BAS to be amended.
  • Match your receipts against your bank transactions. If there are missing receipts, you should acquire copies from your suppliers.

 Calculate Income and Expenses

Go through each income and expense category and calculate a sub-total. If you are registered for GST and prepare a BAS, then you need to exclude the GST to determine the GST exclusive amounts required for tax return reporting. You’re now ready to see your accountant about preparing your income tax return, should you have an accountant review your books.

It’s important to note that the income and expenses on your tax return are calculated on a GST-exclusive basis unless of course your turnover is less than $75,000 per annum and you are not registered for GST.


What is a Virtual Assistant?

Have you ever wondered what it is that a Virtual Assistant actually does?  Or maybe who actually uses one?  Perhaps you’ve been thinking about hiring one.

Well to put it simply, a Virtual Assistant (VA), can be your own Personal Assistant who works from their own home / office.  We specialise in a number of different areas – it can be administrative, bookkeeping, marketing, social media, event coordination, just to name a few.

Communication between a VA and their client is generally done via phone, Skype, fax, Internet and email which means it doesn’t actually matter where your VA is physically located.

Virtual Assistant’s are flexible and can work around your timelines.

As VA’s are generally self-employed contractors, it means you don’t have to worry about payroll, superannuation, finding a workspace or taking time out to train.  We can actually save you money!  Not only do we save you employee or temp costs, we are giving you back time to focus on growing your business.  We can give you a work/life balance and best of all, you only use our services when you need them.

So who do you think could use a Virtual Assistant?  Anyone!  You could be a busy professional who requires diary management, or travel arrangements.  You could be an administrative professional who just needs some extra help, or someone to cover off on your annual leave.  You could be a student who needs typing assistance, proofreading or creating a CV.  You could own your own business and need someone to do your invoicing.  There is no limit to what a VA can do.

Contact us today and find out how we can help you.

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