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Bookkeeper Overview

Bookkeepers are essential. Every organization needs someone to keep track of money spent, money earned, billing, and other expenses. They keep meticulous records and create reports to help business owners understand their company’s financial state. 

If you’re good with numbers, very detail-oriented, and like to keep track of money, working as a bookkeeper may just come naturally.

Responsibilities

  • Enter and track financial transactions. Bookkeepers will use software to keep a record of all of all business debts and income.
  • Make and receive payments. Whether it’s filing taxes, paying employees, or receiving payments for products, businesses constantly move money. Bookkeepers are there to ensure that everyone has paid their bills on time.
  • Prepare reports. Bookkeepers filter and track specific records to make it clear whether or not a business is meeting its' financial goals. They can create reports to see if a new expense is paying off or if an organization needs to cut costs.  
  • Comply with laws and regulations. There are a lot of rules that govern the correct ways to allocate and spend money, especially concerning taxes. A bookkeeper follows these rules to keep their organizations legally in check.

Skills

  • Math skills. As a bookkeeper, you’re working with numbers and making sure they balance, so you should be quick with arithmetic and undaunted by large number sets.
  • Knowledge of bookkeeping software. Quickbooks and Excel are the basic programs that allow you to track money. Some companies are looking for bookkeepers who can also work with accounting programs like ADP or Intacct.
  • Accuracy and attention to detail. Bookkeeping is a job that leaves very little room for error. You should be the kind of person who checks and rechecks work and has a good sense for when figures don’t add up.

Experience

Most employers are looking for bookkeepers with a few years of experience or a degree in business or accounting, but there are some positions open to self-starters with cashiering experience who are willing to learn on the job. Bookkeepers can choose to get certified by taking a series of tests and may also go on to become Certified Public Accountants.

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