5 Ways to Book the Right Bookkeeper

The savvy small business person or entrepreneur should do many things to give their company its best shot to be successful, including booking the right bookkeeper to manage the financial records.

One might say a bookkeeper is to a small business as the fourth wheel is to a car; it could run without the fourth wheel, but not as well nor as smoothly.

Likewise, a small business could operate without a bookkeeper, but it could be a bumpy ride. The fourth wheel balances the ride like a bookkeeper balances the books, and both significantly reduce potential damage.

Bookkeeping is therefore an essential part of a successful business, so finding and enlisting the services of the right bookkeeper should be part of every small business person’s business plan.

Among the things to keep in mind:

1. Seek a bookkeeper who is trustworthy. Honesty is a key attribute. It should go without saying, but when business owners or entrepreneurs hire bookkeepers to handle their books, those bookkeepers must be absolutely trustworthy. They will handle checks, deposits, and charges; balance accounts; and write essential financial reports. All of these are sensitive, confidential documents and parts of a business, so bookkeepers must be honest and trustworthy.

2. Seek a bookkeeper with modern small business accounting knowledge. Gone are the days of strictly pen and ink bookkeeping, and piles of record books. Today’s most knowledgeable bookkeepers are tech savvy. Bookkeepers should be proficient in using automated bookkeeping systems, accounting software, and even online applications, and keep the “books” as digital data on hard drives, as well as on mobile storage and transfer devices.

3. Seek a bookkeeper with acuity for numbers, details, and analysis. Again, it may seem silly to mention a bookkeeper should be good with numbers, but it’s true, nevertheless. A good bookkeeper has a clear understanding of math and accounting functions, and performs them accurately. Along with that acuity, a bookkeeper must have an eye for details to keep all the financial transactions and records straight. Another related skill that is essential for a good bookkeeper is the ability to be analytical; to review, understand, decipher, and analyze all the financial details of a business and how they contribute to the big picture.

4. Seek a bookkeeper who has an aptitude for time management. A good bookkeeper must have the ability to prioritize his or her tasks and the time required to do them. He or she should also set aside time in the schedule to deal with problems and solutions, reviews and updates, and complete one task at a time.

5. Seek a bookkeeper with “personality plus.” Traits like a good personality and excellent communication skills may not be the first considerations when hiring a bookkeeper. Yet, since the business owner will spend a considerable amount of time with his or her bookkeeper, it helps if both parties get along well and have mutual respect for one another. Likewise, since a significant amount of discussion will transpire regarding the financial aspects of the business, a bookkeeper with proficient communication skills will prove to be a valuable asset to the business.

Other Considerations

In addition to those five ways to book the right bookkeeper, a business owner or entrepreneur may ponder a couple other questions:

* Intern or pro? Whether a business chooses to hire and train an intern, or hire a professional bookkeeper from the beginning, depends on the needs of the business, as well as its size and budget. In most cases, however, it’s a good idea for a bookkeeper to have the proper education and experience to handle the financial responsibilities of a business.

* Outsource or in-house? Whether a business chooses to outsource bookkeeping and accounting services or keep them strictly in-house and on-site is likewise a personal decision of the business owner. Again, depending on the size and the operating budget of a business, outsourcing the bookkeeping services rather than hiring a full-time bookkeeper may be cost-effective and a smart way for a small business person or entrepreneur to concentrate more fully on the part of his or her business that’s most enjoyable.

Regardless of who eventually does the bookkeeping for a business owner or entrepreneur, the most important point is that the bookkeeper is right for the respective business and keeps it running smoothly.

About the author

K'Lee Banks has many years of experience in writing for various niches, including business topics such as small business ownership and billfloat.


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