Bookkeepers Northampton Northamptonshire (NN1): You are responsible for maintaining accurate, "true and fair" financial and accounting records for a minimum of 6 years, if you are a sole trader, run a small business or operate an online store in Northampton, in accordance with the Companies Act (2006). Failure to produce these records may leave you facing thousands of pounds in fines and perhaps Company Director disqualification. According to the trade magazine Accounting Today over 40% of small business owners spend at least 80 hours each year doing their bookkeeping tasks, so whilst you can carry out these financial records on your own, it is often better to employ a professional accountant or bookkeeping service to do them instead.
The time has come to contact a bookkeeper in Northampton for guidance, if you are filled with a sense of terror merely thinking about creating profit, loss and financial statements, tracking assets and liabilities, producing balance sheets or writing out ledgers.
BOOKKEEPER OR ACCOUNTANT?
For many people in Northampton, an obvious question when faced with this dilemma is "Precisely what is the difference between an accountant and a bookkeeper?" The reality is that whilst in the past the process of bookkeeping, was regarded as beneath the qualifications, experience and skill set of an accountant, due to substantial software improvements over the past decade or so, many accountancy firms in the Northampton area will now take on bookkeeping. To ensure their bookkeeping services are commensurate with a dedicated bookkeeper's fee, it is now common practice for many accounting companies to have a flat rate for these services. This makes the cost of bookkeeping cheaper than it once was, and is fantastic news for small businesses in Northampton because it gives a wider variety of competition within the industry.
The standard of training and qualification required is the main difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant. Typically holding an accounting degree, a professional accountant should also have had further training in tax preparation and have qualifications in financial and business management. A bookkeeper in Northampton might not necessarily have the same levels of experience and training, or hold these qualifications, but will still have a fair grasp of these procedures.
A BOOKKEEPER'S RESPONSIBILITIES
The recording of day by day fiscal transactions of any business enterprise in Northampton, describes the process of bookkeeping in the simplest of terms. This is likely to include, but is by no means limited to;
- Ensuring accounting and double-entry bookkeeping practices are implemented.
- Billing of customers for goods or work completed.
- Logging the receipt of invoices and ensuring that payment is completed by the due date.
- Highlighting any discrepancies in the financial accounts and rectifying them.
- Documenting of all financial incomings; card, electronic and cash payments included.
- VAT submissions and recording.
- Monthly reconciliation and reports.
- Payroll services.
Based upon the level of service you require, a professional bookkeeper may just be needed to periodically double-check your records, if you're willing to undertake the bulk of bookkeeping work yourself. To ensure that any mistakes or problems can be identified and corrected promptly, at the bare minimum, this should really be every month. This can be an extremely cost-effective trade-off, providing that it's possible to stay up-to-date with your financial transactions without affecting your day by day business activities.
It is a good bet that if you're considering hiring a bookkeeping company in Northampton, you're currently fretting over the financial recording aspects of your small business. To facilitate the seamless arrangement of transactional data, a decent bookkeeping company will help you to link the most up-to-date computer software to your business accounts, and will give advice on things like invoicing, preparing expense reports and stocktaking.
One of the most important elements of good bookkeeping, is being able to correctly reconcile accounts payable with cash flow. This means that by arranging the payment of bills to times when your accounts are in the best possible position, your bookkeeper will avoid the mistake that a lot of small businesses in Northampton are guilty of doing i.e. paying a bill straight away, or waiting for a final notice. This is not only to make sure that your enterprise or business is financially sound at all times, but also to keep you in favour with those people who provide your materials or services. This is just one of those balancing acts that can be hard to perform when you are completely focussed on the smooth running of your everyday business operation.
Employing a professional bookkeeper in Northampton, if you are a sole trader, or for your small business also gives them an opportunity to cast an independent eye over your business finances. Business trends and patterns that might have gone unnoticed could be highlighted by this kind of impartial assessment. A scenario where an astute bookkeeper flags an area of the business where profits are plummeting, or spots a new opportunity which could be worthwhile, is by no means an uncommon occurrence. Spotting such key performance indicators (KPI's) is important for the success and growth of any business in Northampton.
It can sometimes be quite embarrassing to pursue a late payment if your business sends out invoices. By having someone outside your business bubble make that telephone call or visit to your client, some of that awkwardness can be taken away. There are legal solutions a bookkeeper can use, if you're troubled with a persistent late or non-payer, and these can help to clear up the situation before the issue ends up in a claims court proceeding.
SOLE TRADER'S BOOKKEEPING REQUIREMENTS
There are some comparatively uncomplicated sole trader bookkeeping requirements, that are laid out by law. Essentially, sole traders should keep all invoices and receipts, and track expenditure and income from month to month. Even though this may initially sound really simple, retaining the expert services of a bookkeeping company is still a good idea. A specialist sole trader bookkeeper in Northampton will be able to give you advice on what you can claim back from HMRC as genuine business expenses. This could include bills and rent if you work from home, items such as computing equipment, stationery, printer ink and advertising. Talk to your bookkeeper for more detailed advice and see how they may be able to help your business to grow and prosper.
There are niches in bookkeeping where the skills of a specialist may be needed. If online payments, multi-currency processing, cross-border and international taxes and exchange rate transfers are involved, for instance if you manage a store online, you'll be wise to hire a bookkeeper in Northampton who understands these practices. Controlling your inventory on a 24/7 basis is also a massive priority, if that same store distributes goods that you produce or hold, after all the internet does not sleep, so neither should your bookkeeping services and software.
Together with bookkeeping service, a remote virtual office can also be supplied. This enables a sole trader or online only business to offer a physical connection to their customers, via a postal address and phone service. If this type of service could be useful, it's definitely worth discussing the possibilities, although this option won't be supplied by all Northampton bookkeeping companies.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
Many qualifications for the bookkeeping sector are at Diploma and Certificate level, and a certified bookkeeper in Northampton does not need to have a degree. Although there's a variety of online courses available, bookkeeping qualifications can still be obtained via further education colleges and universities, if that's the preferred route.
Bookkeepers are represented by two primary training and certification organisations:
The AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians): Entitled to use the letters AATQB, a fully trained member of the AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) will have been provided with a training schedule and advanced qualifications in bookkeeping. They can then become certified AAT bookkeepers, approved by this well-respected association, which guarantees a decent standard of service for their clients. If a bookkeeper who's affiliated with the AAT has a complaint against them or is found to have broken the code of conduct they will be liable to disciplinary and tribunal processes to protect the values and integrity of the AAT membership.
The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB): The largest organisation on the planet is the the ICB or Institute of Certified Bookkeepers, and it supplies certification for qualified bookkeepers, in addition to reference material and training to ensure their members are up-to-speed with the latest trends.
The qualifications of any professional Northampton bookkeeper can be checked on the register of AAT or ICB members on their respective websites. Prior to hiring the services of any bookkeeping company in Northampton, it is always a great idea to carry out these checks.
Small business owners in Northampton can consider hiring a bookkeeper to handle their VAT returns, which can help them maintain tax compliance and free up their time for other crucial business tasks. 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. Likewise, a local bookkeeper can supply you with valuable insights on how to decrease your VAT responsibility and guarantee that you are claiming all the admissible VAT that you are entitled to. With the help of a bookkeeper, you can have peace of mind knowing that your VAT returns are being handled efficiently and accurately, giving you more time to focus on growing your business in Northampton. In summary, engaging a bookkeeper in Northampton 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. All in all, partnering with a bookkeeper in Northampton can offer small business owners an economical, dependable, and effective solution for their VAT return needs, which can help them stay tax-compliant, minimize their tax liability, and concentrate on business growth.
Outsourced Bookkeeping Northampton
All businesses in Northampton should understand the significance of bookkeeping. It helps business people monitor the money left in the bank, their outgoings and incomings, the total value of their liabilities and assets, and more. With the business owner having to deal with the concerns and issues of running a business, the task of doing the bookkeeping is typically outsourced to a bookkeeping company or freelance bookkeepers in Northampton.
If a company in Northampton employs a bookkeeper in order to become an employee, the company will be required to pay out a considerable amount of money in training the person for the purpose of carrying out the bookkeeping duties. Moreover, there is no guarantee that the person will stay for long in the company. In that case, the company will have squandered a substantial sum of money. As well as that, companies will need to seek out ways and means to provide benefits and incentives to keep the employee in house. These are just a taste of the reasons why business organisations choose to enlist the services of bookkeeping companies and professional bookkeepers in Northampton.
With the advent of new technology there's no need for business owners to stick to a freelance bookkeeper who may continue with out-of-date accounting practices. Again, they're not under pressure to hire and retain some in-house bookkeepers. Bookkeeping outsourcing is growing more common in the financial sector. You'll find a lot of companies offering financial bookkeeping services catering to all kinds of clients and industries in Northampton. A majority of these companies promise and deliver quality service. It is important for a business to look into the track record of these Northampton bookkeeping companies when it comes to hiring a 3rd party company for bookkeeping purposes.
The business owner in Northampton can look for the following options with the bookkeeping company that offers outsourcing services. Check and find out how much savings he can enjoy by outsourcing the bookkeeping work. Since the expenses related to hiring and training the in-house staff is an enormous concern, it would be prudent on the part of business owner in Northampton to look for an outsourcing company that can offer good savings. Try to get first hand information regarding the methods and systems employed by the company involved in bookkeeping services. It is very important to get top quality accounting services and greater security for your financial data. By quality, we mean precise, reliable, and real-time bookkeeping data delivered within the agreed time. In short, the company that offers bookkeeping services in Northampton should have a well protected system that can be relied on and trusted.
These professional bookkeeping companies in Northampton should be able to customise their bookkeeping services with that of the client company's current bookkeeping system. They should be able to ask for assistance from these bookkeepers as and when they need the required support and backup.
Financial statement preparation - article 211.
Northampton Bookkeeper Tasks
Most bookkeepers in Northampton will be able to provide you with the following accounting and bookkeeping services: bookkeeping for freelancers in Northampton, management reports, payroll bookkeeping, mobile bookkeeping services in Northampton, bookkeeping quotes Northampton, Quickbook bookkeeping services Northampton, tax return preparation Northampton, bookkeeping services for startups Northampton, bookkeeping and accounting services, bookkeeping services for shops, bookkeeping services for retail outlets, personal tax returns in Northampton, double-entry bookkeeping, general bookkeeping services Northampton, assistance with registering for self-employment in Northampton, VAT returns, bookkeeping services for pubs, invoice processing, small business bookkeeping Northampton, professional bookkeeping services, bookkeeping for limited companies, management accounts Northampton, tax returns, bookkeeping services in Northampton, bookkeeping for sole traders, maintaining fixed asset registers in Northampton, bookkeeping services for restaurants, wages & PAYE Northampton, independent bookkeeping services, partnership returns, and more. These are just an example of the activities that are conducted by local bookkeepers. Northampton professionals will be delighted to keep you abreast of their full range of bookkeeping services. If there are other Northampton bookkeeper requirements that you want but cannot see here, you can list them on the QUOTE FORM provided. We'll get back to you with specifics just as soon as we are able.
Bookkeepers Near Northampton
Also find: Dallington bookkeepers, Upton bookkeepers, Great Houghton bookkeepers, Kingsthorpe bookkeepers, Duston bookkeepers, Wootton bookkeepers, Collingtree bookkeepers, Nether Heyford bookkeepers, Kingsley Park bookkeepers, Hardingstone bookkeepers, Weston Favell bookkeepers, Blisworth bookkeepers, Cliftonville bookkeepers, Abington bookkeeper and more. The majority of these towns and villages are catered for by local bookeepers. Northampton residents can get prices for bookkeeping services by going here.
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