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How to Find, Hire, and Work With a Bookkeeper

By Cameron McCool

From personal training to pedicures—when you provide your clients with one-on-one service, they come to expect your utmost attention.

But being in business isn’t just about putting in face time with your clients. As the owner, it’s up to you to manage the nitty-gritty administrative tasks that keep operations running smoothly, too.

When paperwork and managerial duties take up too much of your time, your relationship with your clients can suffer. Bookkeeping is one of those administrative culprits that distracts from client service. It’s confusing, time-consuming and most entrepreneurs can’t stand the task.

One way to save time is by outsourcing your bookkeeping. And once you’ve made this decision, it’s time to hire a bookkeeper. Before you make the leap, however, you likely have a few questions like: When exactly should I hire a bookkeeper? Should I bring someone in-house or hire a remote worker? And where do I even begin the search for a bookkeeper?

In this post, we’ll explain how to find and hire a bookkeeper that’s right for your needs—and how you can put them to good use in your business.

What does a bookkeeper do?

Before you hire a bookkeeper, it’s important that you’re clear about what they do and how they’ll help your business.

Think of a bookkeeper as the go-to person for tracking your business’s financial activity on a day-to-day basis.

A qualified bookkeeper can:

  • Prepare your financial statements each month, including Profit and Loss and Balance Sheets.
  • Track the money entering and leaving your business.
  • Categorize expenses so you can monitor cash flow and see how your business is performing financially.
  • Compile accurate financials that help you (and your accountant) file your business taxes.

Occasionally, bookkeepers also handle other administrative tasks like invoicing, accounts payable and payroll.

What's the difference between bookkeepers and accountants?

Bookkeepers and accountants go together like peanut butter and jelly. It’s good to have just one, but when they work together, magic happens.

While a bookkeeper manages your day-to-day financials, an accountant helps with long-term, bigger-ticket items, including tax returns.

For example, if you run a gym, your bookkeeper delivers monthly financial statements that record how much you’ve earned (e.g. from memberships, drop-ins, and merchandise), and how much you’ve spent in business expenses (e.g. rent, wages, and other operating costs).

At the end of the year, your accountant takes your business’s financial statements and uses them to prepare your taxes. Your accountant might also use the information recorded in your financial statements to help you plan for the years ahead.

For example, if you know you’ll need to buy new gym equipment soon, your bookkeeper can record the expense when it happens and show you how it affects your assets. Meanwhile, your accountant can help you plan how you’ll depreciate the expense over time.

These are just a few examples. For a thorough rundown, check out our article The Difference Between Bookkeepers and Accountants.

This is the first article in a three-part series. Click on these links to read the second article and third article in this series. 

Bench is the online bookkeeping service that gives you a team of bookkeepers to do your books—so you don’t have to. MINDBODY users save 20% on their first six months with Bench.

Although this blog offers business advice, this content is for general informational purposes only—it is not intended to replace the guidance of a licensed legal or financial professional. Information created by third parties that we may link out to or feature on our site is not endorsed by us and remains the responsibility of such third parties. MINDBODY assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions in the content.

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About the author:

Cameron McCool

Guest Blogger

Bench

Cameron McCool writes for Bench, the online bookkeeping service that pairs you with a dedicated bookkeeping team and elegant software to do your books for you. He's also a cyclist in the summer and snowboarder in winter.

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