Bookkeepers Boston Lincolnshire (PE21): You're entirely responsible for maintaining "true and fair", accurate financial and accounting records for a minimum of six years, if you run an online store, own a small business or are a sole trader in Boston, in accordance with the Companies Act. You could face disqualification as a Company Director and receive a hefty fine, if you can't produce this information. There's a substantial investment of time involved with maintaining such financial records yourself, and it's often more cost-effective to use a professional accountant or bookkeeping company, particularly when you consider the fact that according to the trade magazine Accounting Today over forty percent of small business owners spend 80 plus hours every year on their bookkeeping.
If you're filled with panic simply thinking about producing balance sheets, writing ledgers, preparing profit, loss and fiscal reports or tracking liabilities and assets, then the time to contact a bookkeeper in Boston for advice and guidance has arrived.
BOOKKEEPER OR ACCOUNTANT?
For many small business owners in Boston, the first question that springs to mind when facing this predicament is "Precisely what is the distinction between an accountant and a bookkeeper?" The truth is that while in the past a lot of accountants considered the task of bookkeeping to be beneath their experience, skill-sets and qualifications, many accountancy companies in Boston will now take on most bookkeeping duties, due to software developments over the past 10 yrs. It is currently quite common for many accountancy companies to charge a fixed fee for bookkeeping services commensurate with a dedicated bookkeeper's fee. This is fantastic news for business owners in Boston since it generates a wider variety of competition within the industry and can make your bookkeeping cheaper than initially thought.
When thinking about the biggest difference between an accountant and a bookkeeper, it is the amount of training and qualification that is necessary for each discipline. An accountant will generally hold at least an accounting degree with additional training in the field of taxation and other fiscal and business management. A bookkeeper in Boston will undoubtedly have a fair grasp of these disciplines, but might not necessarily have the same levels of training and experience, or hold these qualifications.
A BOOKKEEPER'S RESPONSIBILITIES
The bookkeeping process put simply, is the recording of the daily fiscal transactions of any enterprise or business in Boston. This will likely include, but is in no way limited to;
- Highlighting any discrepancies in the financial accounts and rectifying them.
- Logging of all financial incomings; card, electronic and cash payments included.
- Payroll services.
- The billing of customers for goods or work completed.
- Ensuring accounting and double-entry bookkeeping practices are implemented.
- Monthly reconciliations and reporting.
- Recording the receipt of invoices and ensuring that payment is completed by the due date.
- VAT submissions and recording.
While it depends on the extent of the service you're looking for, if you're able to undertake most of your own bookkeeping work, a professional bookkeeper may only be needed to double check your records periodically. So that any problems or mistakes can be detected and corrected swiftly, as a bare minimum, this should be monthly. This trade-off can sometimes be the most economical solution if you're confident of staying up-to-date with your everyday financial transactions and trading.
It's fairly likely that if you're thinking of hiring a bookkeeping company, you're currently struggling with the financial recording side of your small business in Boston. Offering guidance and advice on everything from stocktaking, generating expense reports and invoicing, a good bookkeeping service will also be able to guide you through the process of linking your business accounts with the most suitable software program to facilitate the seamless processing of all your business's transaction information.
An especially important aspect of a good bookkeeper is the ability to reconcile cash flow with accounts payable. This means that by arranging the payment of bills to times when your finances are in good shape, your bookkeeper will avoid the mistake that many small businesses in Boston are guilty of i.e. paying off a bill immediately, or waiting on a final notice. Along with keeping your business or enterprise on a sound financial footing, this also maintains your reputation with suppliers and companies who provide your business with services. When, as an individual, you're mainly focussed on the operation of your business, this can be a juggling act that's tough to perform.
Having a person who is unconnected to the business cast an eye over your financial affairs, is another good thing about employing a qualified bookkeeper in Boston for your small business or if you're a sole trader. It's quite possible that an independent evaluation like this will highlight business trends and patterns that have previously been missed. It isn't uncommon for a bookkeeper to spot a new opportunity or flag an area which is dropping off in profits. Spotting such key performance indicators (KPI's) is crucial for the success and growth of any enterprise in Boston.
If you send out invoices as part of your business operations, having to pursue late payments can be fairly humiliating. If that phone call or visit to your customers is done by somebody outside your business situation, it's possible for most of that embarrassment to be taken away. A bookkeeper can employ legal solutions to take care of a consistent late or non-payer, and without having to resort to a claims court proceeding, help to resolve the situation.
SOLE TRADER'S BOOKKEEPING REQUIREMENTS
The bookkeeping requirements for a sole trader, as laid out by law, are quite straightforward and easily understood. A sole trader is required to keep a record of income and expenditure from month to month and retain all receipts and invoices. It's still recommended that you retain the expertise of a bookkeeping company, although this may sound simple. When dealing with your Self-Assessment tax returns, a specialised sole trader bookkeeper in Boston will be in a position to advise you on what your genuine business expenses are, and ensure these are claimed back from HMRC each year. This could include bills and rent if you work from home, stationery goods, printer ink, advertising and items such as computing equipment. For more comprehensive advice, talk to a trusted bookkeeper, and discover how they might help your small business to flourish and grow moving forward.
BOOKKEEPING FOR ONLINE TRADERS IN BOSTON
Certain small businesses that work in niche markets, may need to use a specialised bookkeeping service. You will require a bookkeeper in Boston who understands cross-border and international taxes, multi-currency processing, exchange rate transfers and online payment procedures, if you operate an online store for example. If you produce or hold the merchandise that you distribute through that shop, then it's going to be a vital concern for your bookkeeping software or services to deal with your inventory on a 24/7 basis, given that the internet never sleeps.
In conjunction with bookkeeping services, it is also possible to establish a virtual office. This is handy in enabling an online only business or sole trader to have a telephone service and postal address to provide a physical connection to their customer base. If this kind of service is needed, it's definitely worth discussing the possibilities, although this option won't be provided by all bookkeeping companies in Boston.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
It is not mandatory for a certified Boston bookkeeper to have a university degree, and many of the bookkeeping industry qualifications are held at Diploma or Certificate level. If the preferred route to qualification is through further education universities and colleges, this is still a possibility, although there there is an ever-growing range of bookkeeping courses available online.
Certification and training for bookkeepers is mostly provided by 2 major organisations:
The AAT or Association of Accounting Technicians: With fully trained bookkeepers being able to use the letters AATQB, the AAT or Association of Accounting Technicians provides a training schedule with advanced qualifications. They can then become certified AAT bookkeepers, backed up by this organisation, which guarantees a decent standard of service for their customers. To preserve the integrity of AAT membership, an AAT bookkeeper can be liable to disciplinary and tribunal processes if they have a complaint filed against them or are found to have broken the code of practice.
The ICB or Institute of Certified Bookkeepers: Providing accreditation to certified bookkeepers, in addition to reference material and training to ensure their members are informed about the latest trends, the ICB or Institute of Certified Bookkeepers is the largest organisation on the planet.
By viewing the register of ICB or ATT members on their websites, it is possible to verify the accreditations of any professional bookkeeper. It is advised to carry out this check, before hiring any local bookkeeper in Boston.
Cash Flow Analysis
The financial health of a business can be comprehended by using cash flow analysis as a key tool. Undertaking cash flow analysis for businesses is one of the primary duties of bookkeepers. This involves tracking the flow of cash in and out of the business over a specific period of time, normally monthly or quarterly. Through this, the bookkeeper can help the businessperson to comprehend their current financial status, identify any cash flow problems, and prepare for the future.
A clear picture of a company's financial health is created through categorizing and reconciling all cash transactions, including expenses, investments and sales, in the analysis. It also involves forecasting the business's cash flow for the next few months or years to help the business make informed decisions and avoid potential cash flow difficulties.
Additionally, the bookkeeper can provide recommendations to improve cash flow, including reassessing the pricing strategy or adopting more efficient payment methods. Any company that wants to manage their finances effectively must have a comprehensive and precise cash flow analysis.
What Are the Main Advantages of Using a Bookkeeper in Boston Instead of an Accountant?
The following are some reasons why you might opt to use a bookkeeper in Boston, instead of an accountant:
- Accessibility: Bookkeepers are usually more available to provide support and answer questions on a regular basis than an accountant, who might only be available at certain times of the year.
- Expertise: Bookkeepers often have a more specialised focus on day-to-day financial record-keeping and transaction management, which can make them more effective and efficient in these tasks.
- Cost-Effectiveness: Bookkeeping services are often more cost-efficient compared to accounting services, which makes them a smart choice for small businesses, sole traders and startups looking to save money.
- Time: By choosing to outsource bookkeeping, small business owners can save time and focus on other vital areas of their business for instance marketing and sales.
- Customisation: Bookkeepers can provide services that are tailored to a business's particular needs, unlike accountants who may have a more standard approach.
That being said, you need to note that whilst bookkeepers can provide valuable support, they might not have the same level of expertise or qualifications as an accountant in certain areas such as tax preparation or financial planning. In such cases, it may be necessary to consult an accountant when more specialist services are needed.
Financial statement preparation - article 211.
Bookkeepers Near Boston
Also find: Kirton Holme bookkeepers, Frampton West bookkeepers, Butterwick bookkeepers, Sibsey bookkeepers, Freiston bookkeepers, Cowbridge bookkeepers, Leverton bookkeepers, Haven Village bookkeepers, Frampton bookkeepers, Skirbeck bookkeepers, Benington bookkeepers, Fishtoft bookkeepers, Gipsey Bridge bookkeepers, Frithville bookkeeper and more. All of these places are served by local bookeepers. Boston traders and businesses can get prices for bookkeeping services by going here.
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Boston Bookkeeper Tasks
Most bookkeepers in Boston will be ready to provide you with the following bookkeeping services: accountancy packages Boston, corporation tax returns, bookkeeping services for sole traders, independent bookkeeping services, bookkeeping services for freelancers, payment services Boston, VAT returns, bookkeeping for limited companies, personal tax returns, credit control Boston, bookkeeping for retail outlets Boston, profit & loss reports in Boston, tax preparation, bookkeeping services for clubs, assistance with registering for self-employment in Boston, bookkeeping services for pubs in Boston, Quickbook bookkeeping services, bookkeeping for home-based businesses, bank reconciliation, cash books, accounting and bookkeeping services, business bookkeeping, bookkeeping services, cash flow analysis, landlord bookkeeping, accounting and bookkeeping, bookkeeping services for startups in Boston, management accounts Boston, Self-Assessment tax returns, letting agent bookkeeping, and more. Listed are just some of the duties that are conducted by local bookkeepers. Boston providers will keep you informed about their entire range of bookkeeping services. If there are some other Boston bookkeeper requirements that you want but can't see here, you should mention them on the QUOTE FORM provided. We will be in touch with specifics as soon as we are able.
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