Bookkeepers Stockport Greater Manchester (SK3): As stated by the Companies Act (2006), if you own a small business, are a sole trader or run an online store in Stockport, you are entirely responsible for keeping accurate, "true and fair" accounting and financial records for at least 6 yrs. Failing to produce such detailed records might leave you facing Company Director disqualification, together with a hefty fine. It can be more cost-effective to use a professional to undertake this for you, given that according to Accounting Today magazine over 40% of small business owners spend at least eighty hours per year doing their bookkeeping, which is a significant investment of time, and may be more efficiently spent on actually running your business.
It's high time to get in touch within Stockport for advice and guidance, if the idea of tracking liabilities and assets, filling out ledgers, producing balance sheets or creating profit, loss and fiscal reports fills you with a sense of panic.
BOOKKEEPER OR ACCOUNTANT?
The very first question that a lot of small business owners ask is "What exactly is the difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant?" In former days it was typically considered to be to be beneath the skill-sets, experience and qualifications of an accountant to do bookkeeping, however due to software improvements over the past 10 years or so, many bookkeeping procedures will now be undertaken by accountancy companies in the Stockport area. For many accounting companies it is now fairly common to charge a set fee for bookkeeping services, to keep them in line with the normal charges of a dedicated bookkeeper in Stockport. Business owners in Stockport are now cashing in on this, as it gives a wider range of competition within the industry and can mean that the cost of bookkeeping is much more affordable than it would previously have been.
When considering the big difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant in Stockport, it is the standard of qualification and training that's necessary for each discipline. Anwill, at the very least, hold an accounting degree, and should have also had further training in business and fiscal management, and taxes. Whilst having an understanding of these procedures, a bookkeeper in Stockport might not have these qualifications or levels of training and experience.
A BOOKKEEPER'S RESPONSIBILITIES
Put simply, the bookkeeping process is the recording of the day by day transactions of any business enterprise in Stockport. This could include, but isn't limited to;
- Making sure that double-entry bookkeeping and accounting practices are implemented.
- Payroll services.
- Billing of clients for work completed or goods.
- Highlighting and rectifying any discrepancies in financial accounts.
- Monthly reconciliation and reports.
- VAT submissions and recording.
- Logging of all financial incomings; card, electronic and cash payments included.
- Logging invoices received and making certain payment is completed promptly.
Based on the level of service you're looking for, e.g. you're willing to carry out the majority of bookkeeping work; a bookkeeper might only be necessary for double-checking your figures every once in a while. So any problems or mistakes can be found and corrected swiftly, as a bare minimum, this ought to be done each month. If it's possible to stay up-to-date with your day to day financial transactions and trading activities, this trade-off can often be the most affordable compromise.
Whatever your scenario, if you are seriously considering hiring a bookkeeper there is a fair chance that you may be having problems with the financial recording side of your small business in Stockport. To facilitate the seamless pull-through of financial data, a decent bookkeeping service will help you link the most up-to-date software program to your accounts, and will offer guidance and advice on procedures like invoicing, stocktaking and producing expense reports.
The reconciliation of cash flow with accounts payable is one of the most crucial elements of a good bookkeeping service. Which means that your bookkeeper will organise the payment of bills to times when your finances are in good order, rather than paying a bill right away, or waiting on a final notice, which many small businesses are guilty of doing. This does not just keep you in favour with suppliers and the businesses who supply services to you, but also makes certain that your enterprise or business is on a good financial footing. This is a juggling act that can be tricky to accomplish on your own when you're focussed on the operation of your company.
For your small business enterprise, or if you're a sole trader, using a certified bookkeeper in Stockport, presents you with an opportunity to have a fresh eye cast over your financial situation. Business patterns and trends that might have otherwise gone unnoticed may be pinpointed by this type of unprejudiced appraisal. It isn't unusual for a bookkeeper to identify a new opportunity or flag up an area of the business which is decreasing in profits. For the growth and success of any business enterprise in Stockport, it is important that these key performance indicators are spotted as early as possible.
Having to pursue late payments can be an awkward situation for you, if you send out invoices in your business operations. Some of that embarrassment can be taken away by having a professional outside your normal business situation make that telephone call or visit to your clients. A bookkeeper can make use of legal strategies to deal with a repeating late payer, and without having to resort to a claims court proceeding, help to clear up the matter.
SOLE TRADER'S BOOKKEEPING REQUIREMENTS
The bookkeeping requirements for a sole trader, as laid out by law, are fairly uncomplicated and easy to understand. Sole traders are required to track expenditure and income from month to month and save all receipts and invoices. While this might sound simple enough it is still advisable to retain the expertise of a bookkeeping company. Offering advice on what legitimate business expenses you can claim back, a specialised sole trader bookkeeper in Stockport will deal with HMRC on your behalf. This may include consumables, advertising expenses, items such as laptops, bills and rent if you work from home and stationery. To see how they can help your small business to grow, chat to your bookkeeper for more comprehensive guidance and advice.
There are particular niche businesses where a specialist bookkeeper may be required. By way of example, if you run an online store, you'll be wise to employ a bookkeeper in Stockport who understands multi-currency processing, international and cross-border taxes, online payments and exchange rate transfers. If you hold or produce the merchandise that you sell on that store, then it's going to be an important priority for your bookkeeping services and software to deal with your your inventory and stock on a 24/7 basis, because the internet never sleeps.
In conjunction with bookkeeping service, it is also possible to supply a remote virtual office. This enables an online only business or sole trader to provide a physical link with their clients, via a telephone service and postal address. Although this option may not be provided by all bookkeepers in Stockport, it's definitely worth talking about the possibilities if this is something that could be advantageous.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND AFFILIATIONS
It's not necessary for a qualified Stockport bookkeeper to hold a degree, and a good number of the bookkeeping industry qualifications are held at Diploma or Certificate level. There are a growing range of courses available online, although qualifications can still be gained via further education colleges and universities.
To provide training and certification for bookkeepers, there are basically 2 primary organisations of interest:
The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB): The largest bookkeeping organisation in the world is the the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers or ICB, and it supplies accreditation to qualified bookkeepers, together with training and reference material to keep their associated members up-to-speed with the latest trends and developments.
The AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians): With fully trained members entitled to use the letters AATQB, the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) provides a training schedule with advanced qualifications. They're then permitted to become licensed AAT bookkeepers, which guarantees their customers a decent level of service which is backed by the association. To safeguard the credibility of the AAT, if a bookkeeper who's associated with the AAT is found to have broken the code of conduct or has a complaint filed against them, they will be liable to tribunal and disciplinary processes.
By viewing the register of AAT or ICB members on their websites, you are able to inspect the qualifications of any professional bookkeeper. Before hiring any local bookkeeper in Stockport it's strongly advised to carry out this check.
What Are the Main Advantages of Using a Bookkeeper in Stockport Over an Accountant?
The following are some reasons why you may opt to use a bookkeeper in Stockport, as opposed to an accountant:
- Specialisation: Bookkeepers tend to have a more focused expertise in day-to-day financial transaction management and record-keeping, leading to greater effectiveness and efficiency in these tasks.
- Customisation: Tailored services can often be provided by a bookkeeper, unlike accountants who may have a more standard approach.
- Accessibility: Bookkeepers are generally 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.
- Time Management: By outsourcing bookkeeping, businesses can save time and focus on other crucial aspects of their business like sales and marketing.
- Affordability: Bookkeeping services are frequently more budget-friendly compared to accounting services, meaning that they are an economical option for small businesses, startups and sole traders.
It's important to note that whilstoffer valuable support, they might not have the same level of expertise or qualifications as an in aspects such financial planning or tax preparation. In cases like this, seeking the services of an accountant might be essential.
Using a Bookkeeper for Tax Returns
If you are self-employed or have a small business in the UK, you may have to file a self-assessment tax return. This task can be daunting, as the process can be complex if you aren't familiar with it. Accurately and on time, a trained bookkeeper can help you prepare your tax return, as well as keeping your records organised.
Using a bookkeeper to complete your tax returns can be beneficial in a number of ways. They'll have the experience and expertise to make sure that your return is completed correctly. This will help you avoid interest charges from HMRC, as well as penalties. Second, a lot of time and effort can be saved by a bookkeeper. You can leave the calculations and paperwork to them so you can focus your attention on your business. Thirdly, Stockport bookkeepers can provide you with valuable advice on tax planning and financial strategy. This can enable you to minimise your tax bill and maximise your earnings. (70193)
Stockport Bookkeeper Tasks
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Bookkeepers Near Stockport
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