Apparently Bookkeeping is changing, so the software companies keep telling us. And it is!
We are in the midst of a journey of developing better business systems and using better technology to perform bookkeeping. Technology providers (and the accounting profession who are being told to take back the bookkeeping) do not comprehend the breadth of services of a Professional Certified Bookkeeper.
Who are you? Who do you want to be? Are you under threat in 2018?
There are two types of Bookkeeping – Which one are you?
- Processing of historic data – creating the record of what has already happened.
- Conducting the Business – using systems to efficiently do the business and at the same time the records that are created.
Maybe you are the third type:
- The reviewer – checking that the systems have recorded correctly and using the resulting data to provide useful analysis to the business.
The purpose of bookkeeping has not changed; the role of the bookkeeper has not changed, and technology is enabling more people to become interested in bookkeeping.
Professional Certified Bookkeepers perform a range of services and provide an assurance to business owners and management at a level that are not provided by others.
Bookkeeping (2017) Encompasses:
(Acknowledging the different types of bookkeeping from above)
- Processing of Historic Data
- Utilising accounting software
- Connecting the software to bank feeds of all relevant bank accounts
- Establishing the bank feeds to auto-code/allocate based on rules
- Using the bank feed process to efficiently allocate all transactions
- Ensure the bank feed enables or is supported by a bank reconciliation
- Bring any non-bank transactions into the accounting software
- Ensure records/documents exist to validate the transactions (maybe using technology to store and match the receipts or invoices to the recorded transaction)
- Provide reports
- Conducting the Business
- Utilising accounting software
- Connect to the revenue generating processes (timesheets, production and product management) to synchronise the activity to the invoice generation
- Electronic Invoice generation (email and client portals)
- Embedded client payment portals (included in the invoice the details, hyperlinks to enable immediate payment into your system or enabling the clients immediate establishment of the payment)
- Automated debtor follow-up systems
- Electronic employee management
- Information capture including Super Choice and TFN Declarations
- Time capture (if applicable)
- Salary and wage payment system (electronic – including direct payments, digital payslips and employee portals)
- Digital purchase processes
- Online ordering, purchasing and receiving of invoices
- Electronic payment system
- Integrated banking connection
- In 2017 it may still require the use of internet banking
- Receipt gateway (merchant and direct debit)
- Payment gateway (integrated with the purchases system and payroll)
- Bank feeds for auto-coding/ matching and reconciliation
- Digital communication
- Secure communication portals to clients, suppliers, employees and management
- User security with appropriate selection of access areas
- Multi-factor authentication at login, or at time of performing specific tasks
- The Reviewer
- Utilising the reports within the software or add-on analysis tools to:
- Detect anomalies in the way transactions have been recorded
- Analyse performance and provide reports
- Ensure security over system changes and authorisations
- Complete compliance based reporting on:
- Activity Statements: GST & PAYGW etc.
- Providing information to enable income tax reporting
- Single Touch Payroll – each pay event reported (in 2018)
- End of year payroll compliance
For more details: Use Today's Technology
Who Are You?
- Which of these processes and services do you provide for your businesses?
- Is the business management aware of the processes you do provide and what systems you are already using to ensure they are performed efficiently and even cost effectively?
- Which of these areas do you need to improve your level of knowledge to ensure that you have the contemporary technology knowledge to improve the processes of your business?
Who Do You Want to Be?
- Which of these processes and services do you not want to provide?
It is ok to be comfortable to limit your scope of services as long as you have deliberately determined the scope of what you do. Then consider aligning with others who provide the additional services to ensure you can still be involved in controlling the provision of the comprehensive services to your businesses.
Are You Under Threat in 2018?
Threat – No. Challenge – Yes.
- Ensure you know what you want to be delivering. (Decide)
- Ensure you are competent to deliver that service. (Educate)
- Ensure your existing businesses (clients or employers) know what you provide. (Promote)
Accountants are being told to “take the bookkeeping back” or “to bring bookkeeping into their firm”.
The smart accountants are aligning themselves with Professional Certified Bookkeepers and are leveraging off the skills of the bookkeeper. This allows the Bookkeeper to continue to provide all the services listed above and provide the accountant with competent financial information which allows the accountant to use their different expertise to further help the client.
2018 remains a year that provides the best results for the business if the Bookkeeper and Accountants are working together.
- Good interchange of information
- Communicate the questions or queries, seeking clarification of how things were done or how they should be done.
- Understand the parameters of what each of you does. Don't step onto each other's toes and work with each other.
- Keep the business informed. Business owners get annoyed if their advisors are deciding things without keeping the business informed.
Updated: 18th December, 2017