Become a Bookkeeper
Bookkeeping is a boom industry.
Gone are the days when small businesses mostly kept their own books.
Today it is common for most small businesses in the UK and other developed countries to employ a bookkeeper; and with this increased demand, bookkeepers are in short supply.
This is an industry that offers excellent opportunity for anyone who has a good command for maths, who wants to start their own small business.
You may need little more than a 100 hour bookkeeping course to get started.
Bookkeepers don't replace accountants, but they can do a lot of what an accountant might have otherwise done, and charged a great deal more to do. Despite a lower hourly rate, bookkeepers generally have lower overheads, and their income can still be extremely good.
Bookkeeping provides a framework for the collection, preparation and recording of financial data from which information can be drawn, so that informed decisions can be made, implemented and evaluated.
A bookkeeping system can be tailored to the needs of any individual, non-profit organisation, small or large business. This course will concentrate on the needs of small business. A business is an economic entity created for the purpose of increasing the wealth of its owner or owners by generating profits from the provision of goods and/or services. A small business is one where all major decisions are the responsibility of one, two or a few people who are usually the owners.
Financial transactions are often referred to as ‘economic events’ where there has been an exchange of something of value between two or more entities. For example, a common business transaction could be the sale of a good or service by a business to an individual in exchange for cash.
A business can help control its financial future through its bookkeeping system. Information relating to financial transactions can be used to prepare budgets and set future financial goals. Businesses need this information to help answer a number of questions, such as:
- Will the business have enough cash to pay its bills?
- How much are the assets of the business worth?
- Can the business afford to borrow money?
- Is the business financial enough to expand its operation?
- Should the selling price be changed?
What is the Difference Between an Accountant and a Bookkeeper?
The difference between an accountant and a bookkeeper may differ from place to place around the world, depending upon the context in which the terminology is used. It is interesting to reflect upon differences in different definitions outlined below:
Definitions from the Collins Australian Dictionary:
‘Accountant’ - a person concerned with maintenance and auditing of business accounts.
‘Bookkeeping’ - the skill or occupation of systematically recording business transactions.
Definitions from the Oxford dictionary:
‘Accountant’ person whose job is to keep or inspect financial accounts.
‘Bookkeeping’ the activity or occupation of keeping records of the financial affairs of a business:
Definitions from the Cambridge Dictionary:
‘Accountant’ - someone who keeps or examines the records of money received, paid and owed by a company or person.
‘Bookkeeping’ - the job or activity of keeping an exact record of the money that has been spent or received by a business or other organisation.
Definitions from Merriam Webster Dictionary:
‘Accountant’ - one that gives an account or is accountable Or
One who is skilled in the practice of accounting or who is in charge of public or private accounts.
'Bookkeeper’ - a person who records the accounts or transactions of a business.
Once you have a sound foundation in Bookkeeping, it has in the past been useful to learn one or more computer programs, such as MYOB or Quicken. With cloud computing though, other options have appeared, and the future is perhaps a little less obvious.
It is certainly a vital requirement that you are computer literate, and are able to apply a broad understanding of bookkeeping to any programming solution that presents. If you are computer literate, you may well be able to buy a program and teach yourself with the tutorials that come with the software.
There may also be a need to familiarise yourself with relevant systems for the country where you live and work. For example: in the UK, you need to learn about VAT and in Australia you need to know about the GST.
Where to Start?
An excellent starting point is a course such as our Bookkeeping Foundations course. The course is written and taught by highly experienced specialist tutors. You can study either online or by eLearning (USB stick), and fit your studies around your existing commitments. You can enrol on the course at any time to suit you.
If you have any questions or want to know more about studying with ACS, get in touch with our specialist Business tutors today. They will be pleased to answer your questions and oultine the study options available to you.
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