Bookkeepers Hitchin Hertfordshire (SG4): For anybody in Hitchin who acts as a sole trader, operates an online store or runs a small business, it is their sole responsibility to maintain "true and fair", accurate accounting and financial records for a minimum of 6 years. This is outlined by the Companies Act. You might be disqualified as a Company Director and face a fine of thousands of pounds, if you're unable to produce these records. According to Accounting Today magazine over forty percent of small businesses spend 80 plus hours each year doing their bookkeeping duties, so whilst you can perform these financial recordings on your own, it can be more cost-effective to use a professional bookkeeping service or accountant to do them for you.
If the thought of filling out ledgers, producing balance sheets, preparing profit, loss and fiscal reports or tracking assets and liabilities fills you with a sense of dread, then the time has come to get in touch with a bookkeeper in Hitchin for assistance.
BOOKKEEPER OR ACCOUNTANT?
A common question that is asked by a lot of small business owners in Hitchin is "What exactly is the distinction between an accountant and a bookkeeper?" The reality is that while at one time the process of bookkeeping, was considered beneath the experience, qualifications and skill-sets of an accountant, because of software developments over the past 10 years or so, most accountancy firms in the Hitchin area will now consider taking on bookkeeping. To make sure their bookkeeping services are in step with a dedicated bookkeeper's fee, it's now quite common for many accountancy firms to have a fixed fee for these services. This is fantastic news for business owners as it generates a wider range of competition within the marketplace and can make your bookkeeping costs far more affordable than previously imagined.
It is essentially the standard of training that is required for each of these disciplines, that illustrates the main difference between an accountant and a bookkeeper in Hitchin. An accountant will, at the minimum, hold a degree in accounting, and should have also had additional training in financial and business management, and taxes. Whilst probably not having this level of experience and training, or holding the same financial qualifications, a bookkeeper in Hitchin will still have a good grasp of all such skills.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF A BOOKKEEPER
The recording of day to day transactions of any enterprise or business in Hitchin, describes the process of bookkeeping in simple terms. This is likely to include, but is in no way limited to;
- Logging the receipt of invoices and ensuring payment is completed by the due date.
- Highlighting and rectifying any discrepancies in financial accounts.
- Ensuring accounting and double-entry bookkeeping practices are followed at all times.
- The billing of customers for work completed or goods.
- Monthly reports and reconciliations.
- VAT recording and submissions.
- Documenting of all financial incomings; including cash, electronic and card payments.
- Payroll services.
Depending on the level of service you are looking for, e.g. you're able to carry out the vast majority of your bookkeeping work; a bookkeeper might only be necessary for double-checking your accounts on a fixed schedule. To make sure that any mistakes or problems can be found and corrected quickly, at the bare minimum, this ought to be done each month. If you're confident of keeping on top of your day to day financial transactions and trading activities, this trade-off can often be the most economical.
It is a good bet that if you are thinking of hiring a bookkeeper in Hitchin, you are currently fretting over the financial recording side of your small business. Offering guidance and advice on everything from creating expense reports, invoicing and stocktaking, a professional bookkeeping service will also be able to walk you through the process of linking your accounts with the latest software application to facilitate the seamless processing of all your business's data.
The effective reconciliation of cash flow with accounts payable is one of the most crucial elements of a good bookkeeping service. Which means that rather than waiting on a final notice, which many small businesses in Hitchin are guilty of at some time or other, or paying off a bill right away, your bookkeeper will organise bill payments to times when your accounts are buoyant. This not only keeps you in favour with suppliers and those people who supply you with services, but also ensures your enterprise or business is on a sound financial footing. When, as an individual, you're firmly focussed on the smooth running of your day to day business activities, this is a juggling act that can be challenging to accomplish.
Using a certified bookkeeper in Hitchin, if you are a sole trader, or for your small business also gives them an opportunity to cast an unrelated eye over your financial situation. It is entirely possible that an impartial assessment such as this will showcase business trends and patterns that have been missed previously. A situation where an astute bookkeeper flags an area where profits are dropping off, or spots a new opportunity that may be lucrative, is by no means an unusual occurrence. It's crucial for enabling growth in any small business in Hitchin, to spot such key performance indicators.
If your business sends out invoices it can often be embarrassing to chase up a late payment. If that visit to your customers or telephone call is made by an independent person outside your business situation, it's possible for most of that apprehension to be eliminated. To help resolve the situation, if you've got problems with a consistent late payer, there are legal techniques that can be made use of by a professional bookkeeper, so court proceedings can be avoided.
SOLE TRADER'S BOOKKEEPING REQUIREMENTS
The requirements for bookkeeping by a sole trader, as laid out by law, are fairly uncomplicated and easily understood. It's stipulated that sole traders should keep a record of income and expenditure on a month by month basis and save all receipts and invoices. Now, this doesn't sound that hard does it? But, it's still recommended that you retain the expertise of a bookkeeping company to make certain that it's all done properly. When preparing your Self-Assessment tax returns, a dedicated sole trader bookkeeper in Hitchin will be happy to advise you on what your valid business expenses are, and claim these back from HMRC every year. This may include advertising expenses, stationery goods, rent and bills if you work from home, items such as computers and consumables. For more comprehensive advice, speak to your local bookkeeper, and discover how they may be able to help your business to flourish and grow going forward.
BOOKKEEPING FOR ONLINE TRADERS IN HITCHIN
There are niches in bookkeeping where the skills of a specialist may be needed. If online payments, multi-currency processing, international and cross-border taxes and exchange rate transfers are involved, for instance if you run an online store, you'll need to hire a bookkeeper in Hitchin who's familiar with these operations. If you produce or hold the merchandise that you sell through that outlet, then it's going to be a vital priority for your bookkeeping services and software to regulate your stock on a 24 hours a day basis, given that the internet does not sleep.
Together with your bookkeeping services, a remote virtual office can also be supplied. Offering a physical connection to their clients, this enables a sole trader or online only business to have a phone service and postal address. Although this option may not be offered by all bookkeeping companies in Hitchin, it's certainly worth a discussion if this service is something that could be beneficial.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
Many of the qualifications in the bookkeeping sector are at Certificate and Diploma level, and a professional bookkeeper in Hitchin need not hold a degree. Although there is a range of bookkeeping courses available online, qualifications can still be obtained via further education colleges and universities, if that's the chosen route.
Representing bookkeepers, there are 2 main training and certification organisations:
The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT): Entitled to use the letters AATQB, a certified member of the AAT or Association of Accounting Technicians will have completed advanced qualifications and training in bookkeeping practice. They're then entitled to become registered AAT bookkeepers, which guarantees their clients a high level of service which is backed by the association. If a bookkeeper who is affiliated with the AAT is found to have broken the code of conduct or has a complaint against them, they can be liable to tribunal and disciplinary processes to safeguard the values and integrity of the aat.
The ICB or Institute of Certified Bookkeepers: Keeping their members current with the latest trends and developments, the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers or ICB is the largest bookkeeping organisation in the world, providing accreditation to qualified bookkeepers, together with reference material and training.
The qualifications of any professional Hitchin bookkeeper can be checked on the register of ICB or ATT members on their respective websites. Before getting involved with any bookkeeper in Hitchin it is a good idea to perform this check.
For small business owners in Hitchin who wish to stay on top of their tax obligations while minimizing administrative tasks, outsourcing VAT return preparation to a bookkeeper may be a wise decision. With the help of a bookkeeper, you can delegate all the responsibilities of your VAT return, such as determining the amount of VAT you owe or are due, submitting your return to HMRC, and maintaining precise records of your transactions. Additionally, a local bookkeeper can supply you with insightful suggestions on how to decrease your VAT responsibility and make sure that you are obtaining all the admissible VAT reimbursements. Having a bookkeeper by your side can provide you with peace of mind, as you can trust that your VAT returns are being processed accurately and efficiently, allowing you to concentrate on growing your business in Hitchin. In conclusion, engaging a bookkeeper in Hitchin can offer small business owners a dependable, budget-friendly, and effective approach to managing their VAT returns, helping them adhere to tax regulations, reduce their tax burden, and focus on expanding their business.
Financial statement preparation - article 211.
Hitchin Bookkeeper Tasks
Most bookkeepers in Hitchin will be able to provide you with the following services: off-site bookkeeping, mobile bookkeeping services, management reports, bookkeeping for home-based businesses, credit control, bookkeeping services for restaurants, bookkeeping services for retail outlets, bookkeeping services, general bookkeeping services Hitchin, bookkeeping for limited companies, corporation tax returns, bookkeeping for pubs, bank reconciliations in Hitchin, Kashflow bookkeeping, cash flow analysis Hitchin, VAT returns, bookkeeping services for tradesmen, Self-Assessment tax returns, bookkeeping for the self-employed in Hitchin, bookkeeping for small business, Sage bookkeeping services in Hitchin, personal tax returns, invoice processing, bookkeeping for startups, independent bookkeeping services, double-entry bookkeeping, accounting and bookkeeping, bookkeeping for shops Hitchin, bookkeeping services for sole traders, Xero bookkeeping services, and more. Listed are just a few of the tasks that are handled by local bookkeepers. Hitchin providers will be happy to inform you of their entire range of services. If there happen to be some other Hitchin bookkeeper requirements that you need but don't see here, you can easily mention them on the QUOTE FORM provided. We'll be in touch with details just as soon as we are able.
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Bookkeepers Near Hitchin
Also find: Lower Stondon bookkeepers, St Ippolyts bookkeepers, Pirton bookkeepers, Ashbrook bookkeepers, Lilley bookkeepers, Holwell bookkeepers, Pegsdon bookkeepers, Ickleford bookkeepers, Little Wymondley bookkeepers, Gosmore bookkeepers, Offley bookkeepers, Kings Walden bookkeepers, Walsworth bookkeepers, Weston bookkeeper and more. All of these villages and towns are covered by local bookeepers. Hitchin residents can get rates for bookkeeping services by clicking here.
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