Organizing the World: The Faces of Shoeboxed part IX (featuring the one and only Shoeboxed Australia!)

With Shoeboxed there has never been one “best” way to use our service to stay organized. And after scanning millions of receipts and business cards since 2007, we say that from years of firsthand experience!

Shoeboxed takes enormous pride in serving clients from around the country and across the globe, all of whom use our service in a myriad of ways to fulfill a whole host of organizational needs in both their personal and professional lives.

A friend at the Shoeboxed Australia office!With that in mind, in this issue of “Organizing the World” we are thrilled to feature our friends from down under. In May 2010, we opened the first Shoeboxed office outside North America in Sydney, Australia, and have been making friends with the locals ever since.

Users from far and wide have discovered how Shoeboxed can help them transform piles of paper receipts unto their favorite accounting, financial and CRM programs to integrate their data. The end result is that individuals and small business owners all over the globe get paperwork done faster, look more professional and spend more time focusing on what they love to do.

The Bright Side of Paperwork: Mark Katz and Southern Sun

This user success story highlights a business focused on skin cancer education, prevention and treatment for Australians. Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world. Statistics have shown that around one in two Australians will develop skin cancer during their lifetime, and up to 1,200 Australians die every year from skin cancer. The overall cost of skin cancer is estimated at over $500 million with many millions more in absenteeism costs.

Shoeboxed User: Southern Sun HealthcareSouthern Sun Healthcare Pty Ltd (Southern Sun) was established by pathologist Dr. Ian Katz as a demonstration of his commitment to providing readily accessible first-rate skin cancer diagnosis, treatment, prevention and education to all Australians.  After graduating from The University of Cape Town Medical School in 1987, he continued his research  in Cape Town and Philadelphia for three years before he moved to Sydney in 1991. Dr. Katz obtained his specialization in Pathology with joint qualifications in Histopathology and Chemical Pathology in 1997 after 5 years training at Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney. He then went on to receive his Fellowship from the Royal College of Pathologists for Australasia in 1997.

For the past eight years, Dr. Katz has focused almost entirely on the clinical and pathological diagnosis and management of skin cancer. Because of his extensive experience and research, Dr. Katz is happy to consult with skin cancer patients as well as perform biopsies and excisions himself!

Shoeboxed User: Southern Sun at an ExhibitionStarting out as a small business in 2002, Southern Sun has seen great success and has rapidly expanded. The company  now has seven clinics throughout the state of New South Wales. Providing early diagnosis, treatment and prevention of skin cancer, Southern Sun has recently been included in Australia’s BRW Fast 100, a list of the top 100 fastest growing businesses in the country. Rapid growth in business is thrilling, but sustained growth is a constant process.  A business that grows too quickly can run into problems if important fundamentals are not managed effectively, and Southern Sun found a great way to do just that by using Shoeboxed.

Shoeboxed User: Mark Katz and Southern SunMark Katz, Financial Controller of Southern Sun, began using Shoeboxed to help him manage the vast paperwork involved in expanding the business. He actually stumbled across Shoeboxed by a reference from a cousin at a family function!  Since then, the healthcare company has been able to successfully grow and effectively manage their accounting logistics. We are thrilled to help the Katzes continue growing their flourishing business and are honored they choose us to help manage their paper clutter!

Until then, stay tuned… and stay organized!

Are you a Shoeboxed user who has a success story and would like to be featured on our blog? Then we would love to hear from you! Please reach out to Carolyn at carolyn@team.shoeboxed.com for more information.

Small Business Guide to Tax Extensions

With one week left to go until the April 18 tax deadline, businesses that haven’t yet finished their returns have two options: get serious or get tax extensions. If you’re still scrambling to prepare your return at this point, or you haven’t even started, an extension is probably your best bet. With an extension you can get up to six additional months to get your act together, and you don’t even need an excuse to get one! Here are some things to keep in mind if you are thinking about filing for an extension.

The Catch: Remember that an extension only applies to the return itself, not to the payment of taxes. You are still responsible for paying any tax due by the April 18 deadline even if you are approved for an extension. The IRS can and will require you to pay interest and other fines if you do not pay in full on time. If you’re not sure how much you owe, pay more than what you think is due to avoid being penalized.

If you are unable to pay your taxes, but you have completed your tax return, you should not file for an extension. File your return on time and pay what you can to minimize penalties, and call the IRS at 800-829-1040 to discuss your options.

The Forms: Most business entities including partnerships, multi-member LLCs and corporations can fill out IRS Tax Form 7004 to request a five-month extension. Sole proprietors and single-member LLCs should use IRS Tax Form 4868, which will extend both the personal and business tax deadlines by six months.

As if filing for an extension weren’t easy enough already, there are a number of online tools that can help you finish the task in just minutes. One such service is FileLater, an IRS authorized E-file provider that specializes in small business extensions. According to the company’s website, over 98% of the extensions they file are approved.

The State Tax Return: If you’re filing for an extension for your federal tax return, chances are you also need more time to work on your state return. In some states, if you are approved for an extension for your federal tax return, you’re automatically approved for an extension at the state level. In other states, it’s not so easy. The IRS and FileLater both offer information on state laws regarding extensions on their websites.

The Deadline: You need to file for an extension by the date your return is due.

If you do decide to file for an extension, you’ll be in good company. According to the IRS approximately 10 million businesses file for extensions every year.

Receipt Organizer … By Mail!

Well, the first batch of receipts has arrived in our office, and we are putting our long-planned scanning system into place. Pretty soon we will be zipping along scanning more receipts that I can count. I think the only thing missing right now is a boom box with some high-energy tunes to keep the energy up.

This is really cool to watch this project come together, especially with all the support we have received from people. Some want it for their own personal organization, and are looking to have more time doing other things that they care about. We have also received a lot of e-mails from excited users who are happy that tax season will finally be easier this year.

Others have found the idea of Shoeboxed Mail-In intriguing because it is a really easy way to catalog everything you own. Lots of insurance policies will make you prove what you own before they can reimburse you for things that get damaged or lost. We’re not promising that you’ll be happy when your house burns down, but at least you’ll be able to get a decent amount of money back.

I hope your house doesn’t burn down, though. Seriously.

Anyway, a lot of small business owners are looking for a good receipt organizer too. Nicco Mele, one of my favorite users, sent me this great comment the other day:

I’m the founder of a small (30 employee) technology company and I have a serious receipts problem. I would love to participate in the initial program [of Shoeboxed Mail-In]. i’d be willing to go on the record, too, about my need for the service and my willingness to pay a monthly fee for the service. It’s a no-brainer even at a relatively high price point.

So whether you’re an individual trying to save time (and maybe a little money) or a small business that is trying to spend more time actually running your company rather than spending forever getting organized, Shoeboxed Mail-In can definitely help. Who’s excited for January, when Shoeboxed Mail-In is available to everyone?

If you’re ready for Shoeboxed Mail-In and would like to be notified when we launch to the public in January, send me an email at help@team.shoeboxed.com.