The world of bookkeeping and accountancy is changing and has been changing rapidly over the last few years. At one time small businesses would have a full-time bookkeeper to manage all the financial aspects of the business from raising invoices to paying suppliers. Now, with the introduction of technology, small businesses do not need a bookkeeper all the time. Accounts software makes it much quicker to record transactions and even making supplier and staff payments can be made quickly with a payment file to upload to the bank. Software can produce charts and graphs so you can see exactly how your business is doing.
With more businesses needing less bookkeeping it enables bookkeepers to have a variety of roles. Certainly when I set up my business one of my reasons was to have variety in my work. I knew I wanted to have the challenge of working with different businesses with different needs. Over the years I have also learnt to manage change in the industry. From obtaining incentives for employers for filing payroll returns online to the introduction of Anti Money Laundering regulations for accountancy service providers in 2007, then RTI, Auto Enrolment and GDPR There is always something we need to know about and understand so that we can keep our customers informed and our business compliant.
April sees an increase in the minimum wage, an increase in pension contributions and the introduction of Making Tax Digital for VAT. As bookkeepers and payroll providers we have a responsibility to ensure our customers know about how these changes will affect them and their businesses and what steps we have or will be taking to ensure they comply.
Changes in technology also mean we have to keep up to date with different softwares and applications coming on to the market. We need to know what is new in Xero and Sage so we can see if it is useful for us and/or our customers. We have to be aware of new software which might add value for some of our customers or make their financial record keeping a lot easier. Working with small businesses we are very aware of costs and whilst software may look to be useful for some of our customers we do consider very carefully with them whether its perceived value is worth the additional cost.
Cloud accounting software has certainly changed bookkeeping and now more business owners are managing their own accounts. Many have moved from using spreadsheets to software and with some initial training and perhaps some support from time to time from a bookkeeper or their accountant they can keep their records up to date and see exactly how their business is doing. It is still important that they understand how to do it because there is nothing worse for an accountant than trying to make sense of their accounts at the year end when it has all become a bit of a muddle. We have helped many businesses who can do the majority of their accounts but have found themselves struggling with one or two aspects.
So, whilst your business needs may have changed from needing a full time bookkeeper you may still need a bookkeeper with experience and knowledge to keep you on the right track and to keep you up to date with changes to both HMRC requirements and technology. A qualified experienced bookkeeper will still add value to your business however much or little you need them.
We have a team of part-time and full-time bookkeepers who provide support to businesses using Xero and Sage. If you are interested in working with our team in our office in Salisbury and have a bookkeeping qualification please get in touch to see if we have a vacancy.