2022 was meant to be our year to return to normality.
After two years of disrupted business, thanks to the pandemic, a bit of normal was long overdue.
But, that wasn’t meant to be. While the restrictions were lifted and business operations restarted, 2022 was anything but normal.
So, after a year that was more difficult than most would have imagined, it is time to rest, relax and recharge for 2023. A big part of that will be switching off your bookkeeping business over the holiday season.
We know it can be hard to step out of your bookkeeping business. So we’ve assembled our best tips to help you switch off this holiday season.
How to switch off your bookkeeping business for the holidays
Step 1: Set Some Dates
The easiest way to plan for a break from your business is to set the dates you want to be closed for. Choose the day that you want to finish up for the year and also the day that you want to return to work in the new year.
That gives you a finite period to work with and will help you to plan your workload.
Step 2: Get Clear On Deadlines
Now that you know which dates you will be closing down for, you can check if there are any pertinent deadlines that fall within that period. Such as GST return dates or dates that you have committed to with your clients.
Factor in what you need to do to meet those deadlines before you take a break, so that nothing is missed while you are taking the time to relax!
Step 3: Build A Workload Plan
There won’t only be Inland Revenue deadlines to meet before you can switch off for the holiday break. So, note down all the tasks you need to complete before you close off and schedule out time to do them in your calendar.
That way, when your last day for the year rolls around, you won’t have anything hanging over your head and will be able to enjoy a well deserved break.
Step 4: Notify Everyone
The last thing to do is to notify your clients and any other key business connections that you are going to be taking a break. Send out an email with your close-off dates, put up a post on your social media and don’t forget to put an out of office message on your emails.
Then, you won’t accidentally get interrupted while trying to relax!
Step 5: Stick To Your Plan!
Once you have your preparations in place, you then have to stick to them!
As a business owner, this can be hard to do and it is tempting to do small bits of work here and there or get sucked into your inbox when you are meant to be taking downtime. But, you won’t actually get the relaxing benefits of a decent holiday break if you continue to work all the time!
So, stick to taking a well-deserved rest during the time period you have specified.
Key bookkeeping tasks for the holidays
December 31st is the end of the physical year, but is not the end of the financial year. Despite that, there are still some tasks that need to be done before Christmas rolls around.
Those tasks are:
Don’t finish the year being owed money. Make sure all the invoices for the work you have completed are raised and sent out to your clients. Also, chase up any outstanding amounts so that they are cleared before your holiday break and you aren’t having to deal with overdue payments in the new year.
Pay Your Bills
You know how frustrating it can be when you are waiting for your bills to be paid, so make sure you pay your own bills on time. Wrapping this task up early allows you to continue the good relationships you have with your suppliers, and stops the risk of penalty fees or interest being applied.
Payroll can be a complicated task at the end of the year with annual leave and public holidays to account for. Make sure you are across not only your client’s payroll, but your own too. Get the details in your payroll system now, so that you aren’t scrambling on December 31st!
There is plenty of helpful info on public holidays on the MBIE website.
Think About Cover
If you are taking an extended break, you may want to consider arranging cover while you are away. This could be one of your team (if you have people working with you) or a VA who could check emails on your behalf and respond accordingly.
Alternatively, you could allocate a set time to check in on your emails and phone messages to see if there is anything urgent that needs dealing with. Try to refrain from checking your emails every day though, otherwise it defeats the purpose of trying to have a break!
The New Year will be a great time for networking and upskilling yourself. Make sure you don’t miss a meeting or event by locking your networking plan in now. ICNZB offers a huge number of regional opportunities for networking, workshops and conferences. By booking your spot now, you can ensure the dates are in your diary and you won’t miss any key events.