FINDING THE RIGHT BOOKKEEPER FOR YOUR BUSINESS
Finding the right Bookkeeper can make all the difference for your business. The knowledge that your financial tasks are taken care of and someone else is there to keep track of filing deadlines will result in you feeling more positive about getting on with the running and growing of your business.
Here are a few tips on how to go about making your selection:
Finding out about your prospects experience in bookkeeping is essential. Some will have worked in only one industry and if that should match yours then they should make a good candidate. Others will have gained experience by maintaining books for a number of small businesses which would have widened their ability to adapt to different industries.
Establish if they have done bookkeeping for someone in your industry before, as this will help with issues that they are likely to come across. A bookkeeper who has never dealt with stock control may not be the most suitable candidate for shop owners.
Ask: “How long have you been a bookkeeper for and what types of clients have you had?”
The significance of good communication is often underestimated by business owners. It is much easier to be clear about how you wish to communicate and what your expectations are on response times right from the start then to let this turn into an issue later. A bookkeeper you struggle to get hold of is counter productive to your business.
A professional bookkeeper will be taking your business seriously and will be keen to answer any queries you may have in a timely manner.
Ask: “What would be your average response time to deal with queries?”
Let them know what accounting software you are using and find out if they have experience in that software. However do remember that the number of available cloud accounting software has risen sharply over the last few years and you may struggle to find a bookkeeper who is using your exact match. A professional bookkeeper should be confident enough to handle most software’s and if you are one for using other helpful apps such as receipt scanners etc. then make sure to ask this:
“Are you keeping up to date with accounting technology and how confident are you about your IT skills?”
If your bookkeeper prefers to use desktop software and you are expecting to be able to share data readily then you will not work well together.
At this point you are probably close to making up your mind as to whether you would hire them or not.
Ask yourself if you are comfortable talking to them? Do they use accounting jargons that make no sense to you at all or do they explain themselves well?
Does your gut feeling tell you that you can trust them with your books?
You will have to work closely with your bookkeeper so getting the right person is paramount to your business.
Also find out if they have checklist in place to deal with monthly recurring items. This will give you an idea as to how established they are.
Have a list ready of all the services you require, i.e. payroll, Vat, CIS… and make sure that they are experienced in dealing with them.
Make sure to discuss fees right from the outset. Are they charging an hourly rate or are they charging a fixed rate? Some bookkeepers have started offering bundles of services, which can include software, technology fees, bookkeeping and more.
Find out about pricing options to see what fits your budget best.
A bookkeeper will be a vital part of your business.
Be sure to take diligence in finding the bookkeeper that is the perfect fit for your business or you may be hindering your own business from growing.