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Setting up and managing your business records

How to set up and manage your business records and invoices so you can meet your tax, super and employer obligations.

Last updated 27 November 2019

It's important to understand your record-keeping obligations and to plan properly and know what's involved. Accurate and complete record keeping will help you meet your tax, super and employer obligations.

The first step is choosing your business record-keeping system. It can be digital or manual but unless you have simple business affairs, an electronic system may be more beneficial and is what we recommend where possible.

As part of your set up and ongoing management of your records, you need to ensure you keep your records safe and secure and you know when to do your record keeping and reporting tasks.

Proper set up of your invoices will also help you run your business more effectively.

You can look after your own record keeping or engage a registered tax or BAS agent, or a bookkeeper, to do all or part of the work. If you are new to business or not sure what you need to do, it is best to seek help early.

Our Record-keeping evaluation tool can help you to understand what records you will need to keep as well as see how well your business keeps records. In addition, we have other record-keeping support available to help small businesses.

We recommend you regularly check you're meeting the record-keeping requirements that apply to your business, particularly as your business changes or grows.

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See also

ATO information for businesses about choosing between a digital and manual record-keeping system.

ATO information for businesses about the information your invoices need to contain to meet our requirements.

How to ensure the records you are required to keep by law are stored securely, safe from theft, fire or water damage.

There are common record-keeping tasks that you need to do to help you meet your tax, super and employer obligations.

Record-keeping information for businesses to help keep track of debtors and creditors.

Record-keeping and reporting tasks will help you better manage your cash flow.

ATO information for small businesses about the help available for setting up and managing your business's records.