Numbers And FinanceLast week, I talked about analyzing where you spent your work time in 2014. Today, I’m going to talk about revenue analysis.

Simple mathematics for writers

Don’t let the name of the concept fool you into thinking it’s complicated. Revenue analysis, at is simplest, just means looking at where your money came from, how much you generated per hour, which clients paid the most, which paid the least, and so on. These calculations only require simple math: addition, subtraction, multiplication, division. As a nurse you certainly can handle that.

Keep good records

Before we dive into the actual numbers, I want to add a word about record keeping. You absolutely must maintain pristine financial records. You must always remember you are a small businessperson and conduct yourself accordingly. Successful business don’t engage in sloppy accounting practices. When you are first starting out, you likely can keep your books yourself. Heck, when I started out I used an old-fashioned, green five-column accounting notebook to track income and expenses. As I began generating more money, I invested in an accountant to help me manage my finances.

There are many accounting programs available, from Xero.com (which is what I use) to Quickbooks and Freshbooks. Pick one, learn it and use it. You’ll be especially thankful you took this step if you get audited by the IRS. ‘Nuff said.

How to slice and dice the numbers

I recommend you review your finances quarterly and make at least these basic calculations:

  • Total revenue for the quarter
  • Hourly rate achieved
  • Highest-paying client (per hour)
  • Lowest-paying client (per hour)
  • Quarter-on-quarter growth (technically this could be an increase or a decrease, but we’re going to stay optimistic)

There are all kinds of ways to analyze your gross revenue. You can calculate your expenses as a percentage of revenue (which I recommend, but I’m not going into it here because it gets complicated). You can calculate your weekly average revenue. There are thousands of ways to look at your money, but I’m going to discuss only the most basic ones — and why these calculations are important.

Check back here on Thursday to take a look at my hypothetical October numbers — and get inspired about how much you can earn as a freelance nurse writer!

Wishing you well!

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