Bookkeepers Dartford Kent (DA1): According to the 2006 Companies Act, if you are a sole trader, operate a small business or run an online store in Dartford, you're responsible for keeping "true and fair", accurate financial and accounting records for at least six years. You might face disqualification as a Company Director and get thousands of pounds in fines, if you cannot produce these records. There's a considerable investment of time involved with compiling such financial recordings yourself, and it can pay you to use a professional , because according to Accounting Today magazine over forty percent of small businesses spend over eighty hours per year doing their bookkeeping tasks.
The time has come to get in touch within Dartford for assistance, if you're filled with dread just thinking about the possiblility of producing balance sheets, writing out ledgers, preparing profit, loss and financial statements or tracking assets and liabilities.
BOOKKEEPER OR ACCOUNTANT?
The very first question that most people ask is "Just what is the distinction between a bookkeeper and an accountant?" The fact is, due to improvements in software over the past decade many accountants in the Dartford area will consider taking on the task of bookkeeping, which at one time was looked at as beneath their qualifications, experience and skill set. Many accounting firms now have a fixed rate for bookkeeping services, to keep them consistent with what an independent bookkeeper in Dartford would normally charge. Business owners are now cashing in on this, because it provides a wider variety of competition within this sector and can make the cost of bookkeeping far more affordable than it would previously have been.
The biggest difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant is the level of training that is required. Anwill, at the very least, hold a degree in accounting, and will have also had additional training in fiscal and business management, and taxes. A bookkeeper in Dartford may not necessarily have the same levels of experience and training, or hold these qualifications, but should still have a good understanding of these skills.
A BOOKKEEPER'S RESPONSIBILITIES
Put simply, the process of bookkeeping is to record the day to day transactions of any business in Dartford. This will likely include, but is by no means limited to;
- Ensuring double-entry bookkeeping and accounting practices are followed at all times.
- Highlighting any discrepancies in the financial accounts and rectifying them.
- Logging the receipt of invoices and making certain that payment is completed on time.
- Monthly reconciliations and reports.
- VAT submissions and recording.
- Recording of all financial incomings; card, cash and electronic payments included.
- Payroll services.
- Billing of customers for work completed or goods.
Contingent upon service level you require, a bookkeeper might only be needed to periodically double-check your figures, if you are willing to undertake the vast majority of your own bookkeeping work. So any mistakes or problems can be identified and corrected speedily, as a bare minimum, this ought to be monthly. If you are confident of staying up-to-date with your daily financial transactions and trading activities, this trade-off can often be the most affordable option.
Whatever your scenario, if you're looking at hiring a bookkeeper in Dartford, it is fairly likely that you may be struggling with the financial recording aspects of your small business. A good bookkeeping service will help you out with everything from stocktaking, creating expense reports and invoicing, to linking your business accounts with the latest computer software to seamlessly process all your data.
An extremely important aspect of a good bookkeeper is being able to reconcile accounts payable with cash flow. Which means that your bookkeeper will arrange bill payments to times when your accounts are in good order, instead of paying a bill right away, or waiting for an overdue notice, which a lot of small businesses are guilty of doing. This isn't only to make sure that your enterprise or business is financially sound at all times, but also to keep you in the good books of those businesses who supply your materials or services. When you are inevitably focussed on the operation of your company, this is a juggling act that can be tricky to perform on your own.
Having somebody who's unconnected to the business cast a fresh eye over your financial affairs, is another added advantage of using an experienced bookkeeper in Dartford if you are a sole trader, or for your small business. It is entirely possible that an unprejudiced evaluation like this will showcase business patterns and trends that have been missed previously. It is not at all uncommon for a smart bookkeeper to flag up an area of the business which is dropping in profits, or spot a new opportunity that could prove worthwhile. These KPI's (key performance indicators) are crucial in driving growth for any business in Dartford.
It can often be awkward to pursue late payments if your company sends out invoices. Having somebody outside your normal business bubble, can take the awkwardness away from visiting your customers or making that telephone call. To help with resolving the situation, if you have problems with a persistent late payer, there are legal strategies that can be used by a professional bookkeeper, so that legal proceedings can be avoided.
SOLE TRADER'S BOOKKEEPING REQUIREMENTS
There are some pretty straightforward bookkeeping requirements for sole traders, which are set out in law. In essence, sole traders should retain all receipts and invoices, and monitor income and expenditure from month to month. It is still recommended that you hire the expert services of a bookkeeping company, although this might sound easy. So that you can claim back all genuine business expenses from HMRC, a specialist sole trader bookkeeper in Dartford can give you advice on what you should do. This could include stationery goods, rent and bills if you work from home, printer ink, items such as laptops and promotional advertising. Speak to a trusted bookkeeper for more comprehensive advice and learn how they may be able to help your small business to grow and prosper.
BOOKKEEPING FOR ONLINE TRADERS IN DARTFORD
Some business enterprises that work in niche markets, might need to hire a specialised bookkeeping service. You will need a bookkeeper in Dartford who's familiar with international and cross-border taxes, multi-currency processing, online payments and exchange rate transfers, if you operate a store online for instance. If you produce or hold the goods that you distribute with that shop, then it's going to be a huge concern for your bookkeeping services and software to manage your inventory on a 24 hours a day basis, because of course, the internet doesn't sleep.
A remote virtual office can also be supplied together with your bookkeeping services. Providing a physical connection to their customers, this allows a sole trader or online only business to have a telephone service and postal address. If this sort of service could be useful, it is certainly worth talking about the possibilities, although this solution won't be supplied by all Dartford bookkeepers.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
A qualified bookkeeper in Dartford doesn't need to have a degree and a number of qualifications in this sector are at Diploma and Certificate level. Qualifications can be gained through further education colleges and universities but there is also an ever-growing choice of online courses available.
Representing bookkeepers, there are 2 main certification and training organisations:
The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB): Offering accreditation to certified bookkeepers, along with training and reference material to keep their members up-to-speed with the latest trends and innovations, the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB) is the largest organisation in the world.
The AAT or Association of Accounting Technicians: With fully trained members being able to use the letters AATQB after their name, the Association of Accounting Technicians or AAT provides advanced qualifications and training. They are then able to become registered AAT bookkeepers, which guarantees their clients a minimum standard of service which is backed by the association. To preserve the credibility of AAT membership, an AAT bookkeeper can be liable to tribunal and disciplinary processes if a complaint is filed against them or they are found to have breached the code of practice.
By viewing the register of ICB or ATT members on their websites, it is possible to determine the accreditations of any bookkeeper in Dartford. Carrying out such checks is generally advised before you actually employ any bookkeeper in Dartford.
What Are the Main Advantages of Using a Bookkeeper in Dartford Over an Accountant?
The following are a few reasons why you might prefer to use a bookkeeper in Dartford, as opposed to an accountant:
- Expertise: Bookkeepers typically have a more specialised focus on day-to-day financial record-keeping and transaction management, which can make them more efficient and effective in such tasks.
- Availability: Bookkeepers are normally more accessible and on hand to provide support and answer questions in comparison to an accountant, who may sometimes be difficult to reach.
- Time Management: By outsourcing bookkeeping, small business owners can save a bit of time and concentrate on other crucial areas of their business such as marketing and sales.
- Customisation: Bookkeepers can provide services that are tailored to a business's specific needs, unlike accountants who may have a more standard approach.
- Affordability: Bookkeeping services are frequently more budget-friendly in comparison to accounting services, meaning they are an economical option for startups, sole traders and small businesses.
It's important to note that whilstoffer valuable support, they may not have quite the same level of qualifications or expertise as an in aspects such tax preparation or financial planning. In cases like this, seeking the specialised services of an accountant might be necessary.
Cash Flow Analysis
To comprehend its financial wellbeing, any business must employ cash flow analysis. Bookkeepers play a critical role in performing cash flow analysis for businesses. It requires monitoring the cash movements of the company during a specific period, commonly 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.
In the analysis, the bookkeeper categorizes and reconciles all cash transactions, such as investments, expenses and sales, to offer a clear picture of the company's financial health. Estimating the company's cash flow for the next few months or years is a vital component of the analysis and helps the company make informed decisions while avoiding potential cash flow issues.
What's more, lenders may be more inclined to provide financing if a company's cash flow analysis demonstrates that it has the ability to pay back the loan. For companies that want to manage their finances effectively, an accurate and thoroughis essential.
Bookkeepers Near Dartford
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Dartford Bookkeeper Tasks
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