Hiring a bookkeeper is about much more than finding someone who can crunch your numbers. It’s about finding a partner who not only understands your needs, but anticipates them to positively influence the direction of your business. No matter what size your business may be, it’s critical to keep tabs on transactions, sales records, expenses, and payroll to understand how your business is performing. So what goes into finding a bookkeeper that’s right for you? And why should you even hire one?
Why you need a bookkeeper
Before jumping into any kind of relationship, it’s important to assess the pros and cons. As a small business owner, it’s absolutely possible to manage your own books. But bookkeeping is typically not where entrepreneurs hold their expertise. There are a number of benefits that come from hiring a bookkeeper to take care of your financials for you.
- Managing your cashflow
Cashflow is the number one concern of all small business owners. Do you have a full sense of the money coming in and going out from all aspects of your business? A qualified bookkeeper not only keeps a close eye on your accounts, they’re able to employ the latest technologies to give you in-depth views on business performance.
- Saving you time
Reviewing receipts, payments, and expenses takes time. A lot of time – something that’s extremely precious to small business owners. When you’re able to trust a bookkeeper with your finances, you can dedicate your time and energy to growing your business. Understanding when and where you should ask for help can actually get you ahead.
- Identifying your unique needs
Each business has a unique set of needs when it comes to managing finances. Finding the right bookkeeper who understands the financial nuances of your particular industry is invaluable. Your bookkeeper can provide prescriptive recommendations and advice on how to improve business operations based on their understanding of the industry.
Questions to ask your bookkeeper
Like any professional for hire, bookkeepers need to undergo a screening process to ensure a good fit. It’s easy to do an initial online search to get a snapshot of their credentials, but an in-person meeting is essential to confirm whether or not there’s enough chemistry to move things forward. Here are some questions to consider when finding a bookkeeper that’s right for your business:
- “What is your experience with bookkeeping for my particular industry?”
Here’s where you evaluate the scope of their industry knowledge. Do they know what specific things to look out for – like credit control, taxation laws, and payroll reconciliation? Ask detailed questions to get an understanding of how versed they are in your industry.
- “What kind of accounting software do you use?”
Qualified bookkeepers are skilled in technology applications. They understand that cloud accounting software streamlines bookkeeping functions and keeps your data secure. Get an idea of what kinds of technologies and applications they’re utilizing so you can get the most of our your partnership.
- “What do you do to stay on top of accounting and bookkeeping practices?”
Bookkeeping is a business practice that’s as old as time, and the foundational aspects of accounting aren’t changing anytime soon. However, accounting software and other applications are transforming the way small businesses do business. Is your bookkeeper familiar with these time-saving apps and software?
Finding the right bookkeeper can empower you to run your business better. Partner with a bookkeeper who understands the financial framework of your business – someone who uses technology to help inform key business decisions. The positive relationship you build with your bookkeeper can be the difference between a business that simply operates and one that thrives.