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A No-Fuss Record-Keeping Guide For Your Construction Business

Posted by Sharie DeHart on Fri, May 10, 2024

Managing a hectic schedule and complex projects can be challenging if you're a contractor. You must also ensure that your paperwork, documents, and contracts are in order. It's essential to keep a paper trail of your work and practice due diligence. 

Keeping all your working documents in order shows that you treat your business, customers, and subcontractors responsibly. This is a mark of professionalism and can also help if you have an insurance or legal claim.

Contractor paperwork documentation and procedures

You should develop documentation and record-keeping procedures appropriate for your contracting operation or service if necessary. Once procedures are in place, it is equally important to ensure everyone understands and follows them. 

A No-fuss Record-keeping Guide For Your Construction Business


It's good practice to hold a workshop on documentation procedures with your employees and have them sign off that they understand and have copies of the procedures.

For construction jobs, some of the documents that may be obtained and maintained as part of your documentation procedure include:

  • Project tenders/estimates
  • Contracts or work orders
  • Duty to perform documents
  • Site inspection forms
  • Tests on work completed
  • Documentation for materials delivered to the site
  • Documentation of your risk services assessment
  • Certificates of insurance from your subcontractors

Using Digital Tools and Software

Implementing project management and documentation software can significantly reduce the time spent on paperwork. These tools can help track project progress, manage invoices, and store important documents securely in the cloud for easy access from any location. 

There are many options on the market, and it's unlikely that a single piece of software will meet all of your project management needs. Companies usually combine a few applications to create a custom solution.

Remember, the accounting software you need depends on the level of reports you require. This is why we recommend choosing project management tools that integrate nicely with the parts of your setup that don't need changing.

What to look for

Real-time reporting capability

Effective construction project management requires up-to-date information. With this, you can make important decisions if you rely on guesswork, which is a lousy way to do things.

The best project management tools for the construction industry offer instant reporting.


Your data must be as accessible as possible. The best construction project management tools are cloud/web-based, which makes them accessible from virtually anywhere in the world.

Good Support

Incorporating even the best construction project management tools will inevitably result in hiccups. That's why you should look for programs from companies with reliable customer support.


Your data is precious and sensitive, and construction project management tools and techniques should reflect this. Before you incorporate any software into your workflow, research the company behind it, its terms of use, and the security measures it implements to keep your company's data private.

Construction project management tool checklist

Here are questions to ask yourself once you've narrowed your options using the above criteria:

  • Does the software come with enough licenses for my company?
  • Can I use the tool on multiple devices?
  • Does the software have several positive reviews?
  • Will the company demo its software for my company?
  • Can my current data be easily transferred to this new software?
  • Do partner companies use the same software or a program that integrates well with this one?

The proper construction project management tools can make a big difference to your company and its productivity.

I hope this helps identify the best picks and what you must consider when evaluating them. 

Proper record-keeping helps you manage your finances, comply with tax laws, and make informed decisions about your business. 

Now that you've narrowed down what your company needs for record-keeping, here are some tips to help you with bookkeeping or both:

1. Keep accurate records of all income and expenses, including invoices, receipts, and bank statements.

2. Use accounting software to manage your finances. This will make managing your cash flow, tracking your expenses, and generating financial reports easier.

3. Separate your personal and business finances. Use separate bank accounts and credit cards for your business expenses.

4. Track your payroll and tax obligations. Ensure you are withholding the correct taxes from your employees' paychecks and paying your taxes on time.

5. Store your records in a safe and secure place. Keep backups of your financial data in case of a disaster or data loss.

If you've reached this point - perhaps you're wondering: Do I still need to implement record-keeping practices when I have already outsourced you as our bookkeeper? That depends. Are you proactive or reactive?

Proactive Business Owners have systems and strategic planning to optimize profit and growth and understand the value of construction bookkeeping and accounting, while Reactive Business Owners wait until the taxes are filed to find out what happened and never plan, and worst, haven't sent any paperwork to us.

In All Cases, as the construction business owner, you should take a "hands-on" approach, including paying the bills, because we do not touch your money.

It is optional for our clients to have 24/7 access to their QuickBooks files and review their Key Performance Reports/financial reports daily. We continually improve processes to make other reporting methods available. With us handling the contractor's bookkeeping services tasks, your in-house staff is free to work on more productive tasks and do what they do best.   

Final thoughts

By following these tips, you can ensure that your construction business stays organized, compliant with tax laws, and financially healthy.

We offer a free one-hour consultation; if it takes a little longer, that is OK! Your relationship with your bookkeeper is one of the most important business relationships ever because we will know what works and what doesn't for you and your construction business.


We offer free resources to help you save time and money that you can download and print now. 

About The Author:

Sharie_DeHart_President_Fast_Easy_Accounting_Serving_Contractors_All_Across_The_USA_Including_Alaska_And_Hawaii-1Sharie DeHart, QPA, co-founded Business Consulting And Accounting in Lynnwood, Washington. She is the leading expert in managing outsourced construction bookkeeping and accounting services companies and cash management accounting for small construction companies across the USA. She encourages Contractors and Construction Company Owners to stay current on their tax obligations. She offers insights on managing the remaining cash flow to operate and grow their construction company sales and profits so they can put more money in the bank. Call 1-800-361-1770 or sharie@fasteasyaccounting.com



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