The Importance of Bookkeeping

A guide to who, what, when, why and how of bookkeeping for your business

As we celebrate Global Bookkeeping Week, we want to provide you with a comprehensive guide on bookkeeping for your small business.

If you are one of Australia’s 2.5 million small business owners, you may spend up to ten hours per week on your bookkeeping. This is usually at the end of the quarter when your BAS is due, and you are scrambling to find the receipts and remember why you transferred some random amount to an account back in July.

Who is your bookkeeper?

When starting a business, you’re responsible for everything: management, marketing, bookkeeping, risk assessment, and being the face of the company. While exciting, it can be overwhelming and stressful. To be successful, you need to outsource some of the areas that are NOT your strengths to professionals.

One of the first things to outsource is your bookkeeping. But WHO should you trust this to?

A good bookkeeper in Australia is registered and certified by the Tax Practitioners Board. They should have a thorough understanding of your business and its financial transactions and knowledge of compliance and legislative requirements. Look for someone who has experience in your industry and offers reliable and accurate bookkeeping services. Finding someone who communicates well and is responsive to your needs is also essential. You can search for registered tax and BAS agents on the Tax Practitioners Board website to find a qualified bookkeeper for your business.

What does a bookkeeper do?

A bookkeeper is responsible for recording, organising, and managing a business’s financial transactions. This includes tasks such as maintaining accurate records of all financial transactions, tracking expenses, managing invoices and receipts, reconciling bank statements, preparing financial reports, and ensuring compliance with tax laws and regulations.

Some bookkeepers will also provide payroll services, including general advice about managing employees and payroll compliance, processing your regular payroll and linking you with specialised employment advice.

A good bookkeeper is crucial in helping small businesses maintain financial stability and make informed decisions about their finances.

However, a GREAT bookkeeper goes beyond that by helping the business owner understand their financial reports and business trends. They can also improve cash flow, implement efficient practices, and help the business owner focus on growing their business and achieving their goals.

When do I need a bookkeeper?

There are several signs that indicate you may need a bookkeeper for your business:

  1. You spend too much time on bookkeeping: If you spend more than a few hours per week on bookkeeping tasks, it may be time to outsource this to a professional bookkeeper.
  2. You are unsure about your financial situation: If you are not confident in your understanding of your business’s financial situation, you may need a bookkeeper to help you keep track of your finances and provide you with accurate reports.
  3. You are making errors in your financial records: If you are making mistakes in your financial records, such as recording transactions incorrectly or forgetting to record transactions, a bookkeeper can help you avoid costly errors.
  4. You need help to keep up with tax obligations: If you are having trouble keeping up with tax obligations, such as BAS or GST reporting, a bookkeeper can help you stay on top of these requirements and avoid penalties.
  5. You want to grow your business: If you’re going to expand your business, a bookkeeper can help you develop and implement financial strategies to support your growth plans.

In short, if bookkeeping is taking up too much of your time, causing stress or anxiety, or preventing you from focusing on your core business activities, it’s time to consider hiring a bookkeeper.


Why do I need a bookkeeper?

Why did you get into business? It wasn’t to spend your time entering data to lodge your BAS at the end of the quarter or to chase money so you can make payroll this week.

A bookkeeper frees up your time by handling the day-to-day financial tasks that can be time-consuming and overwhelming. With a bookkeeper handling your financial records, you can focus on the core aspects of your business and have peace of mind knowing that everything is being taken care of accurately and efficiently.

A good bookkeeper will work with you to keep you on top of your obligations and on track for your goals. They can chase up payments and make sure bills are paid on time. If they have experience in payroll, they can help you ensure you are compliant. They can also help you recognise trends in your business and make processes more efficient.

How do I find a bookkeeper?

Your relationship with your bookkeeper is essential, as they should be a trusted advisor for your business. Establishing clear communication and trust with them is crucial to ensure your financial records are accurate and up-to-date.

Finding a good bookkeeper can be a daunting task. Here are a few tips to help you find the right bookkeeper:

  1. Look for bookkeepers who specialise in your industry or type of business.
  2. Ask for referrals from other business owners or your accountant.
  3. Check the bookkeeper’s qualifications and experience.
  4. Ask about their software and technology skills.
  5. Consider their availability and communication skills.
  6. Check their fees and make sure they fit within your budget.

Bookkeepers may also be listed on various websites linked to professional associations or accounting software, like:

Institute of Certified Bookkeepers –

Australian Bookkeepers Network –

Xero Advisor Network –

QBO Advisor –

By following these tips, you can find a good bookkeeper who can help you manage your finances and keep your business running smoothly.

Or you can save yourself some time, and contact us here at Small Biz HQ. We are professional certified bookkeepers, and Central Queensland’s only independent bookkeeping and payroll service providers. Contact us using the link below to find out how our team can help improve your business and help you live your best small business, big life.

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