Late last year we asked 500 tradespeople how much money they lose each year due to lost receipts and poor book keeping and the results were surprising!

In fact, the overall figure showed that UK tradespeople – as a whole – lose out on is more than £929 million every year due to issues in financial planning, mis-management of expenses and lost receipts which equals £375 each! And if you own a business, you might be losing out on even more with the amount rising to £975 for local building firm bosses.

So why do tradespeople think they lose out on so much? A lack of up-to-date business skills was identified as a factor, as only 41% of those surveyed said that they used digital technology to carry out financial processes.

72,515 tradespeople, or 11% of the profession, have lost money due to errors when logging expenses and a further 13% have lost money due to receipt-keeping problems, with the West Midlands being the worst receipt-keepers in the country.

To get a better idea why this is such as issue, we sat down with a group of builders and installers to get first-hand insights. Here’s what they had to say:

One tradesperson told us that when he started out: “I’d take three weeks off just to do the paperwork.” Now he says: “It takes me maybe 20 minutes every week sorting out all the receipts, invoices and everything then storing them away until the end of the year.”

Another said: “It’s okay if you’re that way inclined and you’ve got the mindset to do that. But not everyone’s got that. After a day’s work that’s the last thing you want to do!”

It’s not all bad news though, to help tradespeople get better at their admin, we’ve created a bank of tools, including:

  • Document to keep track of your mileage, cash flow and budget
  • A template for invoicing customers
  • Advice for chasing late payment

To get your hands on these free of charge tools, just click here and download!

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