Record keeping – video transcript

In this Good record keeping practices video, learn the basics of how to keep records for your business.

Keeping accurate financial records is an important part of owning and operating a business.

Well-organised records can help you to:

  • monitor your business's health
  • meet your tax and superannuation obligations
  • manage cash flow
  • plan for success
  • and
  • provide a snapshot to lenders and investors of your business's performance and potential for growth.

Whatever small business you own, you must keep records of all transactions related to your business's tax and superannuation.

In fact, it's the law.

And you may need to show the ATO your records if they ask for them. You could be penalised if you don't.

Tidy, categorised and easily accessible financial documents will save you time and help you plan, manage and protect your business against risk.

But how should you keep these records?

As the world becomes more digital, many small businesses are turning to electronic record keeping and accounting software.

Electronic records make some tasks, such as tax reporting easier and saves you time once you have your system set up.

You can save paper copies of receipts and documents as digital files by scanning or taking a photo. You don't need to keep paper copies if you have a digital record.

In general you are required to keep records for 5 years.

Always make sure your records are securely stored.

Hard copies of documents should be stored in a safe place. You must ensure digital records are protected with online security systems and encryption. Schedule regular data backups that are stored in separate locations.

Always keep your passwords safe and updated to protect your personal information.

Remember: Any documents that contain customers' private information should be treated as confidential.

If you don't already practice good financial record keeping, today is a great time to start.

Visit the Business Queensland website for more information on record keeping.

Watch the Good record keeping practices video.