Ways To Be The Best Accountant or Bookkeeper
The bookkeeping industry is always changing. Here are some tips to be the best accountant possible, and to enjoy your job every day.
You will save time, become more efficient and decrease the stress of your job.
A bookkeeper is anyone who inputs and records accounts and transactions for an individual or business.
There are different types of bookkeepers, accountants and CPA's, but in this article we will focus on how to streamline your daily process of bookkeeping.
According to Fox Business the bookkeeping industry has grown almost 5% within the past year, and is one of the top 5 businesses to start for the year 2011.
Establish a routine that flows well and is consistent. If you are always changing the process then it makes you think too much. Bookkeeping already requires a good amount of concentration, so streamlining the process will help give your brain a break.
Make your tasks a priority. Look past the fear or dread of doing the daily tasks and face them head on. You always feel more accomplished once you've completed them. This takes discipline and mental-toughness, but you can do it.
Automate as much as you can. Sign up for paperless billing, have bills paid automatically, and use online bill pay when you can. This will save your client money on stamps and save you having to deal with all that paperwork. It's a win-win.
Use one location for all the bills and receipts, like a file or folder. Once a week or once a day (depending on the quantity) post all the receipts and bills into accounts payable. Do this in one sitting, so you aren't wasting time entering them individually.
Clearly mark the incoming and outgoing mail, bills needing to be paid, and paperwork to be filed. Don't let piles of papers and files accumulate on your desk, keep it organized throughout the day.
Write it down. When you have an idea, or a task that needs to be done, keep your memo pad or checklist handy. Write it down immediately; this gets it out of your brain (clearing your mind) and you won't forget to do it later.
Stay up-to-date with your bank reconciliation and monthly reports. Print your general ledger or check listing daily, to ensure you have entered all the automatic payments and deposits. If anything is out of balance, it's easier to find the error daily than to leave it piling up.
Enjoy your work. Find out what keeps the job enjoyable for you! Maybe you like to listen to some soft background music, or you prefer the hum of the news on TV. Get up, walk around, get some coffee or a healthy snack, this will help refuel your body and mind.
Shortcuts can increase your productivity by saving you time, and limiting your stress on the job. Don't try to cheat or cut corners, just use good, reasonable, time saving tips.
Create recurring transactions. Every month you will have some recurring transactions, with the same amounts. Just create an automated button to post these into the account with one click.
Do one thing at a time. Try to sit down and complete one task, no interruptions or distractions. If you have a checklist, just start at the top, check off what you complete and move on to the next. This will make you feel accomplished at the end of the day, instead of starting a hundred projects and finishing nothing.
Out of sight, out of mind. This saying is true, so try to keep all your files and papers in your desk, in neat folders or containers, all within arms reach. Keep everything you need daily and monthly, easily accessible so nothing gets lost or forgotten.
Treat the income and expenses like you would your own finances.
Offer ways to cut costs, or to streamline the business, and find ideas or options for your client to increase their profit margin.
If you become an asset to the client, they will continue to trust you, to use your advice, and refer you to other friends and coworkers.
Know and understand the bookkeeping industry. Stay current on any changes, tax law updates and bookkeeping tips.
Be prepared if your client has questions or comments, so you can give good, sound, and educated answers.
This will decrease your probability for making errors, and ensure the client knows that you are worth what they are paying you (maybe even a little more).
Subscribe to a newsletter like American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers or any other accounting articles; this keeps you up to date on any changes in the laws and tips.