How To Stay Organized While Working From Home (11 Ways) [INFOGRAPHIC]
Want to learn how to stay organized while working as a virtual bookkeeper? Keep reading to improve your productivity at work with these tips on staying organized while working from home.
RELATED: How To Become A Bookkeeper At Home
How to Stay Organized When Working Remotely: 11 Steps You Can Take to Boost Productivity and Efficiency
Step 1: Always Keep Your Workspace Clutter-Free
If you’re having a hard time figuring out how to stay organized, first take a look at your environment.
As a bookkeeper, you’re going to be dealing with a lot of paperwork. However, that doesn’t mean you should have a desk covered with paperwork everywhere.
Having clutter around your workspace makes it harder to focus. It also increases the chances you’ll lose crucial paperwork.
After each workday, make sure you clear off your desk. Don’t leave anything just lying around unorganized on your desk.
You can try placing them in separate folders that correspond to certain clients or projects. In this way, you’ll find it easier to locate your files and avoid mixing them up, especially if you’re working with multiple clients.
Step 2: Organization Tips for Work: Streamline Your Workflow
Once you get more experience as a bookkeeper, you’ll discover that some methods work better than others when it comes to your work.
You’ll be able to develop your own type of workflow and later on, find ways to improve it. Here are some ideas you can consider trying to improve your workflow:
- Try saving a digital copy of every paperwork that ends up on your desk by scanning it. In this way, you won’t lose anything.
- Figure out which time of day you’re most productive at. Having routine conditions your body for work and helps you stay more organized.
Step 3: Upload to Cloud Storage
One of the perks of working remotely is that you get to work anywhere. However, not having an office also means you don’t have a permanent base where you can pool all your work tools and resources together.
Thus, it’s important to make sure everything you need is always accessible to you regardless of where you’re working from.
To do this, you can upload all your relevant work files to cloud storage. In this way, you’ll have access to your files anywhere, as long as there’s an Internet connection.
Step 4: Use CRMs
As a freelance bookkeeper, you’re essentially starting a business as a self-employed individual. Therefore, you have to ensure you have the right tools to help you be at your best.
One such tool you shouldn’t ignore is CRM software.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software Definition: This refers to software designed to help businesses manage their relationships with customers. In this type of tool, data science is used to help optimize the process of gaining and retaining customers.
CRMs can be helpful in managing your relationships with clients. If you want to know how to stay organized and on top of your business relationships, then CRMs are the way to go.
Step 5: Create a Daily Schedule Ahead of Time
Although being a freelance bookkeeper gives you more freedom over your time, this also puts you at risk of procrastinating and remembering dates. Since you’re only responsible for yourself, you might end up forgetting key events and meetings.
To become more organized, you have to learn how to manage your time. Let time work for you instead of the other way around.
Before you even start your day (or preferably the night before) you should make sure you already have a daily schedule set up.
If you’re just starting out, it can be difficult to determine time allocation and deadlines. After all, you don’t know how long it takes you to deal with certain tasks or projects yet.
However, don’t worry too much about it, since you’ll get the hang of it over time. Just try to forecast how much time you’ll need to do a task, then check how much of it you can do in a day with your available time and with other meetings or events scheduled for that day.
Step 6: Make a List of Tasks to Accomplish for the Day
Freelancing is often associated with freedom of flexibility. However, the freedom you have might end up with you not knowing whether or not you were productive for the day.
For easier monitoring of your tasks and progress, create a list of all the tasks you need to get done for each day.
You can do this manually, but there are also plenty of online task management tools that can help you keep track of your daily tasks.
Step 7: Keep Yourself Tidy
It’s not enough that your desk looks clean. It’s also not enough that your workspace is clean.
Although it might be tempting to work in your pajamas, it’s best to refrain from doing so for several reasons:
- It won’t get you into the work mindset. If your subconscious associates pajamas with bedtime, then you might have a harder time focusing at work.
- Looking good can also help you feel good as well. It’s like wearing a suit of armor to get ready to take on the challenges of the workday.
You don’t have to be too formal with it. Just look for something you’re comfortable in and gets you in the right mindset to be productive.
Step 8: Set Working Hours and Enforce It
You might think that freelancing means that you get shorter workdays, since you’re in control of your workload, but you might be wrong about that.
Even if you work from home, you still have to know how to separate work from home. Therefore, you should make sure to set your working hours.
Setting working hours doesn’t only help you know when to clock out of work, but it also lets your clients know when you’ll be available for contact.
Step 9: Schedule Calls When You’re Least Productive
It’s rough when you’ve finally got the ball rolling and you’re dialed down on your task, then your phone starts ringing and you end up getting side-tracked. It’s difficult to get that mojo back.
Try and schedule any calls or meetings during the hours when you’re least productive. That way, you aren’t disrupting yourself and you don’t end up breaking your concentration.
Step 10: Don’t Believe the Myth of Multitasking
There have been several studies that show how multi-tasking doesn’t work. At best, we do individual things fast, but only one at a time.
Multi-tasking may also lead to a lower quality of work since you’re not focused on your tasks at all.
Make sure to focus on one task before moving to another one.
Step 11: Don’t Forget to Take Breaks as Well
Much like scheduling your day, proper time management and organization also requires taking breaks as well. Even if you work from home, you still need breaks in between each major task. In that way, you get to reset and adjust your focus.
Don’t forget to download, save, or share this handy infographic for reference:
Learning how to stay organized when you work from home doesn’t have to be a challenging affair. Of course, it requires self-discipline on your part.
Once you apply these 11 ways of staying organized when working from home, you should have a more streamlined work process that allows you to work better. Through this, you can become your most efficient and productive self.
What is your favorite organizing hack for working from home that’s proven effective for you? Let us know by leaving a comment down below!