Posted on

Best to use your Accountant’s Bookkeeper or hire a junior to save money?

Junior level 1 bookkeepers good cheap local bookkeeping services - Natbooks

What’s Your Bookkeeper Preference?

Recently, I wrote that a lot of bookkeepers are losing out to accountants because business owners prefer the cheapest and easiest way to stay compliant. Rather than employing a bookkeeper AND an accountant to lodge their tax returns and activity statements, many business owners choose to hire an accountant only so they can deal with just one person but are they really getting value for money? When it comes to finding a good bookkeeper at this skill level business owners have the choice of hiring: 

  • Registered BAS Agents,
  • Their accountant’s internal bookkeeper,
  • An external, independent finance manager

Many good bookkeepers these days have trained as qualified BAS agents, which allows them to complete and lodge activity statements for their clients and other BAS services. The skill sets of a BAS agent and an accountant performing BAS tasks are the same, so they usually charge the same, but does your accountant really do your BAS or basic bookkeeping work?

Accountants perform higher level duties, such as financial planning, and their fees for this service are inline with what some experienced finance managers charge but when it comes to basic bookkeeping tasks they often hire a junior bookkeeper and charge them out at a lower rate but this rate is often much higher than if you hired this type of bookkeeper directory – so what are you paying for?

Pay for what you need, not what you don’t

Junior level 1 bookkeepers good cheap local bookkeeping services - NatbooksThink about your business needs. Most micro and sole trader businesses will rarely need the expertise of an accountant. But hiring one means that you’ll need to stay on top of your bookkeeping (reconciling your account, etc) because accountants won’t perform these tasks — they may outsource it, which can be costly because your accountant will be managing the bookkeeper and adding a margin to their rate as a management cost.

These businesses should instead hire a BAS agent, who can also perform bookkeeping work as well as lodge activity statements and in this situation they could just use a tax agent like ITP or H&R Block. Depending on the amount of work to be completed you could directly hire a junior or Level 2 bookkeeper and have that person perform a lot more of the bookkeeping function and office administration work and with cloud-based software like Xero & QuickBooks and Office productivity tools like Google G Suite the work can be done remotely.

If you want someone to manage all of your finances — keep track of inventory, credit management, etc — and also provide financial reporting and planning services, a finance manager is the way to go as this person can also provide guidance to your office admin and junior bookkeeping staff. 

Who does an EzyLearn course?

Lots of EzyLearn students complete an MYOB, Excel or Xero course because these software programs are demanded by employers, but we also receive enrolments from lots of bookkeepers and accountants who want to learn the cloud-based accounting software programs as well as up-skill in MS Office and Digital & Social Media Marketing. If you are a bookkeeper or accountant and need CPD courses check out our Bookkeeping Academy.

Start a bookkeeping business and work from home

Every business needs a good person with numbers and many small businesses and startups are focused on what they do best – and it’s rarely accounting. Learn about the bookkeeping business startup options..

ref:#713

 

Posted on 1 Comment

Is the Death of the Bookkeeper Imminent?

Happy New Year to all our readers! And take comfort in knowing that we think the death of the bookkeeper is FAR from imminent! Read the post to find out.
Happy New Year to all our readers! And take comfort in knowing that we think the death of the bookkeeper is FAR from imminent! Read the post to find out.

All right, so it’s not the most joyful heading we could have gone with on New Year’s Eve, but it’s not actually meant to conjure up doom and gloom! We have  researched and developed new online training courses for Reach Accounting and Xero, which have now been added to our suite of training courses that include the flagship MYOB training course. In the process we’ve spoken to a number of accountants to see what software they’re using, to ensure we’re providing the training courses you need to get a bookkeeping job. This is good news because you can then rely on us to inform you what more you may need to offer clients.

Throughout this process, we’ve come across a number of accountants who are using BankLink, an accounting service we’ve written about previously, which streamlines and automates the data entry portion of managing a client’s account.

The ‘In-House’ Extra Employee

For many accountants the BankLink software, which was acquired by MYOB in June of this year so they could further extend their reach into the accounting space, is being billed as an “extra employee” that never makes mistakes and is comparatively cheaper than the additional in-house bookkeeper or admin person headcount.

The big question for us is: Does this spell the end of the bookkeeper? For instance, think of the way personal computers did away with the need for the office stenographer working in a steno pool? The answer is that this is indeed possible — but this is only if data entry is the sole service you offer. Like most professionals today, the more specialised you are and the more services you can offer, the more likely you are to experience career longevity.

At the end of the day, software is only as good as the person who uses it. If you’re a highly experienced bookkeeper in a particular industry or possess a number of highly sought-after accounting skills, you’ll find BankLink a dream come true in that it eliminates the tedious, time-consuming data entry from your job.

BankLink: Giving You More Time

With more time on your hands, you’ll be able to grow your client-base — a goal for most small businesses and previously only available if you miraculously grew a spare set of hands, or employed a spare set of hands, at least. You may even be able to move your business out of the narrow bookkeeping space into the small business management space.

With the number of new small businesses increasing, the key to their individual survival in a highly competitive marketplace is good management — and who’s more suited to that job than someone with a thorough understanding of account keeping?

***

So while BankLink may spell the end of tedious, time-consuming data entry, for the experienced bookkeeper it presents more business and career opportunities — not less. Upskill and enjoy greater career success as a result.

Posted on 2 Comments

What You Need to Do Before 30 June!

Print out our checklist of what you need to complete before the end of financial year.
Print out our checklist of what you need to complete before the end of financial year.

If you have recently started your own business after completing our online MYOB training course, and this is your first time doing end of financial year (EOFY) analysis, never fear — here’s an EOFY checklist to make sure you’re ready!

Even if you’re a veteran bookkeeper, these are still handy tips that are often overlooked in the rush to get everything ready by 30 June.

Before the EOFY:

  1. Make sure you present and clear any old cheques before 30 June before you reconcile your bank accounts — you don’t want to leave these until the following financial year, as it create problems later on down the line.
  2. Also chase-up any outstanding debtors (people who haven’t paid an invoice that’s overdue) as, again, if it’s paid after 30 June, this can create problems later on.
  3. If you have any outstanding debtors that are more than 12 months old, cut your losses (so to speak) and claim back the GST.
  4. You should also write off any old stock if it is also more than 12 months old.
  5. Once this is done, reconcile your accounts — is your un-deposited funds account bank to nil? If not, you need to go back and investigate why.

Now for Payroll:

  1. Don’t forget that the superannuation guarantee will increase to 9.25% from the 1st July this year — make sure you update your records so you don’t get caught out later on down the track.
  2. Make sure you have all of your employees’ tax file numbers before 30 June.
  3. Pay your June Superannuation Guarantee Charge (SGC) by 30 June this year to ensure you actually get the tax deduction this year.
  4. Also make sure you pay all your SGC obligations before 28 July 2013 to avoid SGC review and all the time-consuming paperwork that goes with it.
  5. Don’t leave your payment summaries until the last minute — by law you have to provide these to your staff by 14 July, so you give yourself plenty of time.

 

Remember: In MYOB the software requires you to enter a tax file number for all employees regardless of whether they have one or whether you have to print a payment summary for them or not.

In this instance use the following codes:

  • For a New Payee that has not made a TFN Declaration, but 28 days have not passed use: 111 111 111
  • Payee is under 18 years of age and earnings do not exceed $350 per week, $700 per fortnight or $1,517 per month use: 333 333 333
  • Payee is an Australian Government pensioner payee use: 444 444 444
  • Payee chooses not to quote a TFN and has not claimed an exemption from quoting a TFN or does not fit into any of the above categories use: 000 000 000.

***

And while we’re dispensing handy tips, we find that if you have a checklist of all the things you must do for as part of your end of financial year analysis, you’re less likely to forget anything. So why not print out this list and keep it by your desk so you don’t get caught out.

Posted on 1 Comment

How-To Guides: Writing a killer resume?

Example of a Resume CVIf you are like a lot of students who enrol into our online MYOB and Excel training courses you probably haven’t used your CV in quite a while. I had a situation in 2008 when I needed a CV for a project I was presented with and it was a time consuming task which took a lot longer than I expected.

We’ve been talking to a man who operated his own head-hunting business and he has plenty of experience in not only presenting himself to potential employers, but also as a person who reads resumes, and conducts interviews on a day to day basis.

We also spoke to a professional writer and a rehabilitation consultant and they will share their insights as well as provide tips on how to write the perfect resume, prepare for job interviews, write cover letters and much more. Their team even includes a professional bookkeeper who will share insights about how to find work as a bookkeeper.

These career professionals are team members of our training partners, Workface, and you can read their job seekers blog as well as subscribe so you receive the tips via email.

One of the tid-bits that I can reveal is the importance of personalising every resume so that the recipient feels like you are talking only to them. Subscribe to their blog and get some great job seeking skills.

Want to read other blog posts about resume writing and tips and tricks to find employment?