7 Ways to Make Filing Deadlines Painless

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We all have those horrible, awful days. Days where every single client you have turns their finance reports in at once-the January 31st kind of days. Days where you're not sure if more caffeine will make your hands shake too much to type, and if that shaking is worth it to keep your eyes from shutting completely.

Well, at least I did.

That's why I've put together a list of ideas for campaign filing deadlines to make your life much, much easier on those dreadful days-or at least less painless than the dentist's office. Let's take a look…

1. Don't do all of your data entry at once.

Procrastinating or letting things pile up have the same ill-effect. By filing daily (or at least weekly), you create a more manageable filing schedule. You don't want to be running around in panic at the filing deadline, doing work that could have been accomplished weeks ago. How do I know? I've been there. But think about how much less stress you'll feel as the days tick toward a filing deadline without a backlog! Enter checks as they come in…you'll thank my for it!

2. Do your bank reconciliations monthly.

This one hits home. The first campaign I ever worked on, I had to file three amendments to the FEC, all because I didn't stay up on my reconciliations. Reconciliations are easy, and maybe even a little therapeutic-making everything match is not an issue you want to deal with while you've got other things going on.

So, like keeping up with your filings to spread your workload out more evenly, the same goes for your reconciliations. Even more important: make sure you're doing your bank reconciliations in the same software you use to generate your compliance reports. If you miss this critical point, doing reconciliations at all is useless! Luckily, we offer software that does both.

3. Generate drafts of your report before the period has even closed.

Creating drafts of your compliance reporting early and often is a real lifesaver. That's why we built software that makes it incredibly easy to do! When you create a draft report with our software, it performs over 5,000 error checks to make sure all the kinks are ironed out. It looks for transcription errors, missing addresses, employers, misclassified entities-basically, whenever you generate a report, our software checks every aspect and makes it easy for you to fix it!

If you run drafts early and often, when the filing deadline comes along, you should only have a few weeks of errors to fix (instead of a few months). It's all about maintenance!

4. Generate a draft report as soon as the period ends.

Generating reports as soon as they are available adds a super fast and easy way to do some maintenance that saves time down the road. Get in there early to check that dates and amounts are correct, focusing specifically on starting and ending balances, so you can catch inconsistencies early on. Get a jump on the little things so you can relax while the rest of the companies are stressing.

5. Save for filing-courtesy of yours truly.

When you generate a report, you can save it into our system for later. This makes filing day a whole lot easier: you can pre-generate reports and keep them all in one place, saving as you go. If something bad happens (maybe something you can blame on the intern), it won't affect your whole report, because you were smart enough to use software that corrects all the mistakes I used to make!

We have a special tool just for consultants too. With this tool, you can update reports for every client you represent as filings come in, and keep them all in the same place. Every saved report appears on one screen, organizing all the reports you have to file, for all of your clients.

Even better, on filing day you can submit all of your reports from that same screen, going down the screen, one-by-one, until your job is done! I know how hard it is to keep everything straight, which is why I built something that helps you do just that.

6. Still-seriously-don't wait until last minute!

Our software is state of the art, responsive, and designed to work reliably and efficiently for you. The FEC's is not.

It's tough to imagine, but filing agency employees are probably just as stressed out as we are come deadline time. And unfortunately, while you're used to using software that's the best of the best (cough ours), they're probably still using decades old software loaded on floppy disks. This means their servers can run slow or even become unresponsive as the end of filing day approaches. Needless to say, that isn't a headache you want to go through.

Try and file in the morning, just in case. This will be easy if you use our software, and will help you avoid catastrophes.

7. Have a cocktail at lunch

This is the most important step! You did it. Now you get to sit back and laugh as other firms (who didn't follow our advice, or use our software) struggle and worry throughout the day. Good job.


Ready to Ditch Campaign Filing Deadline Headaches Forever?

As you can see, a big part of reducing the pains of campaign filing deadlines is daily and monthly maintenance. The other part that makes that maintenance simple, fast, and easy, is using ISPolitical software. All the necessary checklist items are accounted for and at your fingertips. We help you to dot your i's and cross your t's…all you have to do is a little maintenance to stay on top!

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