So, you’re ready to hire a bookkeeper? Congratulations! Bookkeepers are a vital business service and critical to your growth and success. Not only can they save you time by taking care of your finances, but they can also help you become more profitable with their strategic thinking skills.  At Accounts All Sorted, we understand the challenges you face running a profitable and sustainable business.  And hiring a bookkeeper shouldn’t be one of them! In this blog, you’ll learn what to look for in a great bookkeeper and questions to ask when hiring a bookkeeper (your first or your next one!).

5 essential qualities of a great bookkeeper 

As we’ve said before, behind every great business is a great bookkeeper, so hiring a bookkeeper for your small business can feel like a big step, afterall, they will have your business’s financial heart in their hands.

Here are the 5 essential qualities a bookkeeper must have.

  1. Experience: Choose a bookkeeper who is certified and experienced, someone who will grow with you and become one of your trusted financial advisers. You want a qualified bookkeeper who is knowledgeable in bookkeeping practices, and with your industry too.
  2. Trustworthiness: Probably the one of the most important qualities of a great bookkeeper is their trustworthiness and knowing you can trust them with personal and private information. Your bookkeeper will have access to the finances of your business and you must be able to share confidential information with them.
  3. Attention to detail: There’s no magic in magic, it’s in the details! A great bookkeeper will be meticulous when it comes to the details of your books. Accuracy is everything in bookkeeping.
  4. Communication skills: Great communication builds trust, reliability and credibility. Whether it is a burning question or you need growth strategies, your bookkeeper must communicate effectively with you and in a timely manner.
  5. Strategic thinking: A bookkeeper will not only help you with bookkeeping strategies but also business growth strategies. Remember they have a mind that works with numbers and numbers are the heart and soul of your business. Being a strategic thinker for your business and with your books is a top quality in a bookkeeper.

Questions to ask when hiring a bookkeeper 

Are you registered and qualified to work as a bookkeeper?

First and foremost, you want to know if they are qualified as a bookkeeper and how long they have been practising in the industry. If you are registered for GST, ask them if they are a registered BAS agent too. At Accounts All Sorted, we are experienced and qualified in bookkeeping, and we are also registered BAS agents who can help with your quarterly Business Activity Statements. We’ve been in the industry helping small Australian businesses for more than 20 years!

What sort of bookkeeping work do you do?

This question will help you find out exactly what they do and determine if this fits with the support you need in your business. For example, at Accounts All Sorted, we specialise in the key areas of:

  • Bookkeeping for small business
  • Payroll
  • Business advisory
  • Xero including training, setup, onboarding (and moving to Xero)
  • Administration support 
  • Integration of third party software and payment services

 If these are the areas where you need support, we can step in and help.

What packages do you offer?

With this question, you want to find out what your new bookkeeper will help you with, the tasks they will do for you and how they charge for their services. For example, at Accounts All Sorted, there are three ways we work with our clients:

  • Full bookkeeping service: We take care of all your bookkeeping requirements so you can work on your business.
  • Shared bookkeeping service: We work with you to ensure you remain compliant and up to date, and we can also train you in using Xero.
  • Catchup bookkeeping: Ideal for those who have fallen behind and need assistance in getting their books up to date.

Learn more about our bookkeeping services and pricing structure here.

What type of small businesses do you work with and how familiar are you with my industry?

When you’re looking for a new bookkeeper or one for the first time, ask your prospects if they have worked with a business like yours previously. Then you can feel confident knowing you are in good hands. We specialise in small business, cafes, hospitality, trades, childcare and professional services. We keep up to date with all relevant legislative changes that may impact our clients’ businesses and are passionate about empowering business owners with financial knowledge. 

How do we communicate with each other?

Your new bookkeeper needs to be a great communicator because as a business owner you may have questions at some point that require a quick response – and  communication is key. Ask them how they communicate, for example, phone, email or text message (or a combo of all three!) and decide if this fits with how you communicate. Also check in on what you can ask and what they will help you with, for example, our goal is to provide our clients with guidance and advice to keep their bookkeeping on track and to better manage their accounts and expenses, hence we are proactive in helping our clients with these areas.

Other questions we are frequently asked:
  • Can you work at my office?
  • What bookkeeping software do I need?
  • Are there any setup fees?
  • How much does a bookkeeper cost?
  • Why do I need a bookkeeper (here’s a blog answering this question) link to intro blog from September

he answers to these questions can be found on our FAQs page. 

Hiring a bookkeeper: Get in touch today

At Accounts All Sorted, we partner with our clients to empower them with the knowledge, tools and solutions to help them make the right business decisions. We have more than 20 years of knowledge, experience and wisdom, and our team can not only help you improve your business with our bookkeeping skills and strategies, but also through automation, integration and finding business solutions that are tailored to you. To have a conversation about hiring a bookkeeper and your bookkeeping needs, please contact us today.

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