5 Tips for Hiring the Right Bookkeeper
Five tips for hiring the right bookkeeper for your business. As soon as you start an online business, you must either hire a bookkeeper or become the bookkeeper. No matter how small, every business has numbers to sort out and keep on top of. This includes sales, expenses, salary payments – any movement of money in or out of your business. It is possible to do this by yourself. Most entrepreneurs and online business owners aren’t trained or qualified in bookkeeping, unless it’s a bookkeeping business you own! It’s common for online business to outsource this work. Keep reading to find out why hiring a bookkeeper is a promising idea and a vital part of doing business. I’ll also tell you how you can hire the perfect bookkeeper for your business.
Three reasons why you need a bookkeeper
If you’ve just started to venture into the online business world, you might think that you don’t need a bookkeeper or someone to look after your books. I would argue against this. There are so many good reasons to hire a bookkeeper. Here are just a few:
- Save you valuable time
- Help you to manage cash flow
- They will get to know and understand your business and help in the most appropriate way possible
- Unless you know a lot about bookkeeping, it would be unwise to take this on by yourself. Processing receipts, expenses and payments is only part of the work. Bookkeeping professionals know how to assign expenses to specific clients. They’ll make sense of all the numbers. A good bookkeeper knows how transactions should be treated to provide useful business reports. It’s a skilled job, and your bookkeeper will do it much more efficiently than you can.
- Because they deal with the day-to-day accounts, bookkeepers have a deep insight into your company’s finances. By sharing this insight with you, they can give you the tools you need to make the most informed business decisions. They can flag any issues in time for you to do something about them. A good bookkeeper watches over your finances and helps you steer clear of trouble.
Know what your business needs
Hiring a bookkeeper is no different to hiring any other professional. Before you hire anyone, you need to understand what you need. Then you’ll be able to find the person best suited for the role. Here are the questions you need to ask yourself before hiring a bookkeeper:
- What type of business do I have? – Manufacturing businesses have different bookkeeping requirements to retail or service-based companies.
- How many transactions do I make on a daily, weekly or monthly basis? – This will help you to calculate how much time you’ll need a bookkeeper for.
- Which accounting software am I using? – Using an online software is useful because this will allow your bookkeeper to share data with you securely at any time.
- Do I need credit control, payroll or debt collection services to help me get paid faster and on time? – Some bookkeepers can handle debt chasing for customers who are late to pay. This usually comes at an additional cost.
- What are my key dates? – Your key dates will be payroll dates and tax return deadlines. Key dates can also be business performance report dates. You can ask your bookkeeper to review reports monthly to see how business is going. An example would be a timely and accurate profit and loss report.
5 tips for finding the right bookkeeper
There are a vast number of bookkeeping services available. Having to choose just one can be overwhelming when you’re not even sure what you should be looking for. Use these tips to help you narrow down your choices and find the perfect bookkeeper for your business.
Do you want a consultant or a firm?
Bookkeepers can work independently as well as part of a firm. Many bookkeepers choose to be freelance and this means that they will have several clients at a time. If your business is large enough, you could hire someone to work in-house, full time. A new trend in bookkeeping is Virtual Online Bookkeepers. They fully automate your processes and can see transactions in real time. There’s no right or wrong answer to this question, it purely depends on the needs and the size of your business.
Is location important to you?
Nowaday, there’s no reason that you need to hire a local bookkeeper. Not unless you want to. Online accounting software makes it entirely possible to hire a bookkeeper from anywhere in the world to access your accounts data remotely. If you feel more comfortable being able to meet you bookkeeper in person, then you can take that approach too. It’s up to you and what you prefer.
Use your social networks to your advantage
Use online social networks like LinkedIn to help you research a bookkeeping professional. If you can find one that has been recommended by friends, family or people in your professional circle, that’s even better. You can seek out local business advisers or coaches to see if they have any recommendations too.
Look for experienced professionals
Certification is available for bookkeepers so it’s worth checking to see if they’re part of a professional governing body like a bookkeeper’s association. See how many past clients they have and if they have had clients in the same industry as you and see if you can speak to any of their clients.
Choose the right person
Talk to as many people and firms as you need to. Interview them once, twice, three times if that’s what you need to do. Be sure to check references and qualifications. Another important consideration is working compatibility. Are you going to work well with this person? You’re going to have to talk to them on a regular basis so make sure this is someone you going to be able to get on with. Trust your instincts and hire someone who is friendly, approachable, helpful and keen.
Bookkeeper help to organize your financial chaos. They take all the number, receipts, invoices, bills and other accounts data and magically make sense of it all. They put all this information into your accounting software and use it to create reports that you can understand rather than a bunch of numbers. This can give you an immediate insight into the health of your business. A good bookkeeping partner will be with you every step of the way, they are your advocate, helping you to understand your financial data and grow your business. It’s vital that you take the time to choose the right financial co-pilot.
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