Mastering the fundamentals of bookkeeping and securing a trustworthy bookkeeper can be a daunting task for any aspiring small business owner. Nonetheless, as your business expands, so does the complexity of your bookkeeping requirements, making it imperative to elevate your bookkeeping approach. In this article, we will elucidate the concept of full-charge bookkeeping and highlight the advantages it can offer to your business.
What Is Full Charge Bookkeeping?
Full-charge bookkeeping encompasses all the aspects of regular bookkeeping while also offering additional services that are typically associated with accounting. The term "full charge" implies that this service package includes more than just basic bookkeeping.
A full-charge bookkeeper is responsible for a wide range of financial tasks. Their role involves handling duties that bridge the gap between basic bookkeeping and accounting. Essentially, they perform a dual function, making them well-suited for mid-size businesses and even larger ones that have relatively straightforward accounting transactions and do not require a dedicated controller.
Responsibilities of Bookkeeper
As stated previously, the responsibilities performed by experienced bookkeepers encompass a comprehensive range of tasks, along with additional value-added services. Therefore, it is essential to explore the fundamental duties of a full-charge bookkeeper to determine if they align with the requirements of your business. By doing so, you can gain a clearer understanding of whether this role meets your specific needs.
- Documenting financial transactions
- Handling Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable
- Tracking and analyzing cash flow
- Balancing bank statements
- Generating accounting entries
- Generating and sending invoices
- Managing payroll tax, income tax, sales tax, and tax returns
- Preparing bank deposits
- Compiling financial statements and regular reports
- Distributing payments to employees
- Maintaining an up-to-date general ledger
- Overseeing the work of accounting and payroll personnel (if applicable).
What sets a Full Charge Bookkeeper apart from an Accountant?
You may be curious about the distinction between these two job titles and which one is best suited to handle your financial records. Let's start with the fundamentals. Bookkeeping entails the task of monitoring and recording finances, while accounting involves the compilation and analysis of account-related information.
It's important to note that a full-charge bookkeeper is not a certified public accountant (CPA). While full-charge bookkeepers can assist in preparing financial statements and tax returns, these documents are typically reviewed or audited by a CPA. However, full-charge bookkeepers generally do not provide tax planning advice or act as financial advisors.
Therefore, the responsibilities of a full-charge bookkeeper do not encompass all the duties of an accountant. Additionally, accountants have higher formal education requirements, typically holding a bachelor's degree in accounting or finance, at the very least.
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How does a Ful-Charge Bookkeeper differ from a Regular Bookkeeper?
There are two reputable organizations that offer certifications for bookkeepers: the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB) and the National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers (NACPB). The AIPB grants certified bookkeeper licenses, while the NACPB provides the certified bookkeeping professional license.
It's worth noting that individuals working as full-charge bookkeepers often do not possess a specific certificate that grants them this title. Furthermore, there are no official requirements, whether in terms of education or professional credentials, for this occupation. Many full-charge bookkeepers begin their careers as regular bookkeepers, acquire practical experience, undergo advanced training in accounting software, and progress through the ranks. Given the elevated level of responsibility associated with this role, extensive field experience is typically expected.
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Benefits of Hiring a Full Charge Bookkeeper
The bookkeeper offers a wide range of services by managing all aspects of accounting tasks and overseeing clerical staff, making them valuable addition to your team. The suitability of having a bookkeeper depends on the specific requirements and scale of your business. Nevertheless, it is important to consider the following key advantages of employing a full-charge bookkeeper for your business.
- Opting for a full-charge bookkeeper can prove to be a cost-effective solution, especially for mid-size businesses that do not require a dedicated accountant. By combining the responsibilities of two roles into one, it makes practical sense to consider this option.
- Having a single person handling your financial data offers greater practicality compared to coordinating multiple individuals, such as a bookkeeper and an accountant. This streamlined approach simplifies the process and ensures efficient management of your financial records.
- When you hire an experienced bookkeeper, you can expect impeccable bookkeeping services, including both routine tasks and more complex financial responsibilities. Their expertise and years of experience guarantee accuracy and reliability, leaving no room for concern during tax season or when seeking bank loans.
- With a competent bookkeeper taking care of all financial records, you can shift your focus toward the growth and expansion of your business. Free from the burden of managing books and data, you can confidently invest your time and efforts into building a brighter future.
Determining the Optimal Time to Employ a Full Charge Bookkeeper
Due to their extensive expertise, experienced bookkeepers are typically more expensive than ordinary ones, making it challenging for small businesses to afford them right from the start. However, as businesses expand and the volume of financial transactions increases, many entrepreneurs opt to invest in bookkeepers.
Consequently, as your business progresses and its financial matters become more intricate, transitioning to a full-charge bookkeeper should occur organically. Hence, this becomes the optimal choice for medium to large-sized companies that are undergoing growth and possess the means to undertake this transition.
Is Employing a Full Charge Bookkeeper the Appropriate Course of Action?
Recognizing the significance of bookkeeping is crucial. Initially, it may appear as a task that anyone can handle effortlessly. However, as time progresses, it becomes increasingly complex and can demand a substantial amount of time. Considering that time holds monetary value, squandering it is not an option. Utilizing it wisely is imperative. Thus, opting for bookkeeping and accounting services is a prudent choice, particularly when you can benefit from a full-charge bookkeeper who combines both services. Should you have any concerns, feel free to reach out to Bookkeeping Pro Services, the esteemed provider of bookkeeping services.