In This Practice
Keeping your company records organized
Backing up your computer
Saving documents safely
This must be said: Keeping your data safe is just as important as filing your taxes. If the pitfalls of not backing up your computer isn't a tired subject, I don't know what is. Whenever you hear someone talking about their latest computer crash, all they can do is stare blankly into the distance and say, "I lost everything!" I admit, it happened to me — just once. I'm sure that you've also heard this cry from others (if you've not uttered it yourself): "If only I'd backed up my files!"
Even worse than a computer crash, what about a natural disaster? It can happen, you know. When I went to sleep on January 16, 1994, I didn't know that the next day, when I attempted to enter my office, everything would be in shambles. My monitors had flown across the room, filing cabinets turned over, and oh, did I mention the ceiling had collapsed? It seems that my garage office became Ground Zero for the Northridge earthquake. (I want you to picture me shoveling though the mess to find my insurance policies.) This experience taught me some solid lessons about keeping duplicate records and backed-up data copies, preferably in an off-site location.
If the ultimate computer crash (or natural disaster) has happened to you, you have my deepest and most sincere sympathy. It's a horrible thing to go through.
What's another horrible thing? A tax audit: ...