Bookkeeping Definition, Types and Importance of Bookkeeping


Learn more about what bookkeepers do and how to get started in this career. A content writer specialising in business, finance, software, and beyond. I’m a wordsmith with a penchant for puns and making complex subjects accessible.

Let’s walk through the core duties, common additional duties, and advanced What is QuickBooks, and how does it work?. The accounting equation means that everything the business owns (assets) is balanced against claims against the business (liabilities and equity). Owners of the business have claims against the remaining assets (equity). Assets are what the company owns such as its inventory and accounts receivables.

Excel bookkeeping vs. online bookkeeping

As a small business owner there are responsibilities coming out of your ears, but bookkeeping is just as important as the rest of them. Set reminders for all of the key dates you’ll need throughout the year. These should include submission and payment deadlines to help you avoid penalties and interest payments, as well as other key dates – like payroll or loan repayments. There are different submission deadlines depending on your business structure, so take a look at our key tax year dates for businesses. The terms bookkeeping and accounting are often used interchangeably, but the two roles provide different functions.

  • One of the first decisions you have to make when setting up your bookkeeping system is whether or not to use a cash or accrual accounting system.
  • You know that you’ll have to pay it at some point, so it’s important to include it in your bookkeeping.
  • Online bookkeeping services might be the exact solution you need to save both time and money.
  • Some software will even use this process to cut down on time-consuming bank reconciliation checks.
  • This concept is important because each accounting transaction impacts at least two accounts.
  • If you’re not sure what you’re doing, or simply don’t have time, then outsourcing it to a bookkeeper or accountant is fine too!

Assets also include fixed assets which are generally the plant, equipment, and land. If you look you look at the format of a balance sheet, you will see the asset accounts listed in the order of their liquidity. Asset accounts start with the cash account since cash is perfectly liquid. After the cash account, there is the inventory, receivables, and fixed assets accounts. Firms also have intangible assets such as customer goodwill that may be listed on the balance sheet.

Balance sheet

Bookkeeping is the practice of recording and tracking the financial transactions of a business. Bookkeepers regularly summarise this activity into reports that show how the business is doing. They may also perform wider tasks such as invoicing, paying bills, preparing tax returns, monitoring key performance indicators, and providing strategic advice. Both accountants and bookkeepers work to maintain accurate records of finances, and sometimes the terms are used interchangeably. Generally, bookkeepers focus on administrative tasks, such as completing payroll and recording incoming and outgoing finances. Accountants help businesses understand the bigger picture of their financial situation.


While they seem similar at first glance, CPA Fees in 2020 How Much Does a CPA Cost? Prices, Rates Per Hour, Fee Schedule and accounting are two very different mediums. Bookkeeping serves as more of a preliminary function through the straightforward recording and organizing of financial information. Accounting takes that information and expands on it through analyzing and interpreting the data. The two foundational tasks in small business bookkeeping are data entry and bank reconciliation.

Importance of Bookkeeping

The accrual method matches revenue earned with expenses incurred to generate the revenue, which presents a clear picture of company profit. Keep your information up to date, and make sure you take time to review your financial reports (sometimes known as management accounts) regularly. Good bookkeeping software will generate financial reports automatically, helping you take more effective action in the business. If you’re not sure what you’re doing, or simply don’t have time, then outsourcing it to a bookkeeper or accountant is fine too! Keeping your financial records up-to-date helps you keep track of any money you owe (or are owed which will help with credit control) and spot areas where you could save. A small business can likely do all its own bookkeeping using accounting software.

  • Keeping the books is just one of the tasks modern bookkeepers might handle.
  • With this bookkeeping process, you must maintain three pieces of documentation.
  • Most often, their reports go to business owners and managers to help them make decisions.
  • Successful businesses need financial information to control costs, manage cash flow and generate a profit.

Next, set aside a dedicated time either weekly or biweekly to review your bookkeeping, reconcile transactions and complete necessary data entry. Finally, you’ll want to decide how all receipts and documents will be stored. You can either keep hard copies or opt for electronic files by scanning paperwork. Bookkeeping tasks provide the records necessary to understand a business’s finances as well as recognize any monetary issues that may need to be addressed. Proper planning and scheduling is key since staying on top of records on a weekly or monthly basis will provide a clear overview of an organization’s financial health. The financial transactions are all recorded, but they have to be summarized at the end of specific time periods.

We charge a monthly fee based on your business type

Successful businesses need financial information to control costs, manage cash flow and generate a profit. Without reliable data, you may not be able to make the best decisions for your business. An accounting system provides the information you need to manage your operations. As a director you’re separate from your company, so you’ll need to report the business’s finances, as well as your own income. Your records form the basis of every tax return that you need to send, so it’s crucial that they’re accurate.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *