How to Become a Bookkeeper
Are you all about making sure everything adds up? A career as a bookkeeper could be for you! Helping large and small businesses alike keep a record of their financial transactions, bookkeepers provide a valuable service to business owners.
What Does a Bookkeeper Do?
Bookkeepers play an essential role in any business, ensuring that records of financial transactions are kept up to date and correct.
The day-to-day tasks of a bookkeeper
Day-to-day, a bookkeeper needs to keep on top of all the financial dealings of a company. This includes maintaining an accurate record of accounts payable and receivable, payroll, and net expenditure. Usual tasks might include talking to customers or clients of the business or department heads to ascertain what has been agreed. This could be via in-person meetings or by email or letter.
Can a bookkeeper work from home?
Bookkeepers can easily work from home and, because it’s such a stable career with almost endless options of where to work, you can opt for a company that supports working remotely. Plus, several bookkeepers set up their own self-employed businesses, which give them the potential to create more flexible working options.
Can a bookkeeper work part-time?
There are plenty of part-time bookkeeping roles, so you can fit a job around further learning or your personal life.
What Qualifications Do You Need to Be a Bookkeeper?
To become a professional bookkeeper, you’ll need to obtain qualifications from both the professional bookkeeping bodies in the UK, the IAB (International Association of Bookkeepers) and the ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers). It’s also a good idea to start with professional diplomas, such as the AAT Foundation Certificate and Advanced Diploma in Accounting, and eventually move up into higher levels, obtaining certificates such as an AAT professional Diploma in Accounting (Level 4).
What GCSE’s do you need to become a bookkeeper?
You don’t need specific GCSEs to become a bookkeeper, though an affinity for numbers helps, so a GCSE in maths may be advantageous.
What A-levels do you need to become a bookkeeper?
A-levels aren’t necessarily needed to become a bookkeeper, though having some further education within maths and business may help you to land a bookkeeping position.
Do you need a degree to be a bookkeeper?
You don’t need a degree to be a bookkeeper, though an undergraduate qualification may make you a more attractive prospect to potential employers. However, having a degree in accounting can be an excellent way to step into this field.
Does becoming a bookkeeper need any work experience?
Several people opt to start their career working part-time or self-employed so that they can gain the relevant skills and experience before applying to full-time positions. Alternatively, opt to shadow a local bookkeeper or accountant to learn the ropes.
What kind of work experience should you look for?
You don’t require any specific work experience to get started in bookkeeping, though you will need the relevant qualifications. On top of that, you’ll need a well-rounded understanding of the standard bookkeeping practices, which could be gained through study. Even for entry-level positions, it’s a good idea to try to have some experience in specific bookkeeping and accounting software like Xero, Excel and Quickbooks.
How to highlight your bookkeeping work experience on a CV
Make sure you’re putting your most recent work experience at the top of your CV and demonstrating any transferable skills, especially if your experience is more general. As mentioned earlier, there are several soft skills involved in bookkeeping, so if you’ve worked in other roles where communication or Excel skills were key, these should be highlighted.
Skill Set Required for a Bookkeeper
Bookkeepers fulfill a very important function and are essential to the smooth functioning of every business. Considering the level of responsibility that rests on bookkeepers, it is no wonder they must have a somewhat unique combination of skills in order to be able to do their job well. Those are:
How Much Does A Bookkeeper Earn?
As with most careers, how much a bookkeeper earns is dependent on where they work. But what is the average salary for a bookkeeper? Well, you can expect to earn around £27,000 a year in this role. Once you’ve got a bit of experience under your belt, you can expect your wages to rise to around £35,000 a year.
Typical Duties for a Bookkeeper
Popular Career Pathways for Bookkeepers
The career path for bookkeepers is stable and enriching, as businesses will always need bookkeeping services.
As a bookkeeper, may also choose to go into more specialised accounting work, allowing you to become head of the financial department in your office. You could also choose to set up your own bookkeeping business, developing a niche clientele, or expand the scope of your business by offering training services.