Whether you sell handmade jewelry, enterprise software, or legal advice, there are two things we can guarantee about your business: you earn money and you spend it and bookkeepers are the ones who help you keep track of all that.
If all your attention has been focused on getting your business off the ground, you might not fully understand what a bookkeeper does. Below we’ve broken it down the day-to-day role of a bookkeeper, and why a good one is worth holding onto.
A bookkeeper is someone who prepares your accounts, documenting daily financial transactions. Bookkeepers have been around as far back as 2600 BC—when records were tracked with a stylus on slabs of clay—making bookkeeping not the oldest profession, but pretty darn close.
A (very) brief history of bookkeeping
In colonial America, bookkeepers would record transactions in a “wastebook”—so called because the data would eventually find its way into an official ledger and the original book would go into the trash.
Today any bookkeeper worth their beans uses some kind of software platform to track finances. But like those old wastebook days, bookkeepers typically hand off their records to an accountant come tax time or when big decisions need to be made.
Four Tips to Making Bookkeeping Easy
The key to saving money and staying on track is to implement a few strategic habits.
Bookkeepers vs. Accountants
There are some financial tasks that bookkeepers aren’t equipped for; that’s where accountants come in. While bookkeepers record daily transactions, accountants use the information compiled by a bookkeeper to produce financial models. Bookkeeping is straightforward and transactional, while accounting is more subjective and calls for skilled interpretation—like helping you understand when it’s time to incorporate, or filing your taxes to get the best return possible.
Bookkeepers offer a literal look at where you stand financially in the moment, and accountants help you see the bigger picture and the path your business is on.
But what does a bookkeeper actually do all day?
A bookkeeper’s duties will always include a fair bit of data entry and receipt wrangling. Practically speaking, they label expenses, indicate who you paid and how much you paid, and keep a record of receipts. On the income side, they track incoming payments and sometimes issue invoices.
That said, bookkeeping is more than just dropping numbers into a spreadsheet—it takes meticulous analysis and just enough legal know-how. After all, bookkeepers will help you survive an audit by making sure your records are in order and your deductions are legal.
Let’s break it down further. Typically bookkeepers are responsible for preparing four key financial statements:
Some other important things they can do to help your business run like a well-oiled machine:
The benefits of having a good bookkeeper
Why does any of this matter? If you have a top-notch bookkeeper, you’ll reap some of the following benefits:
A good bookkeeper never cuts corners, and they are indispensable to business owners who want to spend time growing their business, instead of maintaining it.
If you are ready to take that next step and hire a bookkeeper, we are here to help!
Call 866-602-3646 today.
We know what it’s like to build a business from the ground up, and we understand the importance of a good support system.
TheOfficeSquad combines the precision and discipline of the military with training in the administrative and bookkeeping fields, all while maintaining the understanding and urgency of owning a small business.
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