Office Tasks to Finish Before Busy Season Arrives

Take care of vehicle registration and these other little chores before things get hectic for you

Office Tasks to Finish Before Busy Season Arrives

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We have been talking about planning for your season recently, and as a small-business owner, you know that a lot of things can fall through the cracks. And paperwork is probably No. 1 on that list. Paperwork is the bane of a small business’s existence. No one likes it; it is time-consuming and frankly probably the worst task at your company. But it is also a necessary evil, so let’s head into a new season with a completely crossed off to-do list. 

Facing the unknown can be really hard. And let’s be honest: If it hasn’t been taken care of, that probably means you don’t even know about it. Below is a list of the items that definitely have a tendency to be missed or forgotten during the busiest months of the year. 

Start with the core of your company. Whether you are a corporation or an LLC, you most likely have to file a yearly annual report with your state of formation. Some states send out a reminder when that is due. But in case you have never seen a reminder, check your state’s secretary of state website to see the status of your organization. In most cases, you can file the report and pay the fees online, so this is a relatively easy item to cross off your list. If your company falls inactive with the secretary of state, another company can take your name. So this one is really important. 

If your trucks aren’t out on the road that means you probably aren’t in business. So going through truck registrations, insurance cards and permits should definitely be next. A couple of years ago, we made all of our truck registrations and permits digital. That way when a driver loses a registration card or insurance card, I have another copy at the touch of a button. By keeping everything digital, it also means I have a copy of everything in front of me at all times. I can see when something has expired or is about to expire and renew it right away.

With the busy season around the corner, you are probably hiring some new employees. Do you have an employment package? How about a handbook that outlines vacation days, dress code and other policies? All of these things seem rather insignificant, but they can make a new hire’s transition to your company much smoother, which means you have a better opportunity to retain that worker.  

These documents can really help your company thrive. New hires and current employees understand what is expected of them upfront, so there can be no misunderstandings. I mention them because for years we didn’t have these items either. In the list of things to do, these items were always the least important. But after a certain number of years, it became clear that we really needed them. Organizations such as ADP or the U.S. Small Business Administration may offer templates that you can customize to your company so this isn’t such a time-consuming task. 

If you start to think about each job at your company, you will see moments where process, procedure and paperwork are necessary. Credit card authorization forms, time-off requests, purchase orders for new equipment — all are basic items that companies in our industry need, no matter how big or how small. 

About the author: Alexandra Townsend is co-owner of A Royal Flush, based in Philadelphia.


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