Bookkeeper – The First Step for Aspiring Accountants

Aug 18, 2020 | Business

Are you an organized, A-type personality, a career as a bookkeeper may be the right choice for you? What is a bookkeeper? Could this be the perfect match for your skills? If you head for numbers and organizational skills, bookkeeping may be the right career path for you.  

What does a bookkeeper do?  

Bookkeepers are a fundamental part of any business that helps keep an accurate record of financial transactions. Organizations rely heavily on bookkeeping to track income, expenses, pending invoices and overdue accounts. Bookkeeping is the first step in any accounting cycle.  

Daily duties of a bookkeeper may vary depending on the size of the company. Larger organizations may have a team of bookkeepers, focusing on a specific domain. Some of the primary duties include:  

  • Maintain a record of financial transactions and ensuring legal requirements compliance.  
  • Establishing charts of accounts and maintain subsidiary accounts.  
  • Maintaining historical records and ensure accurate filing.  
  • Verifying, allocating and posting transactions accurately  
  • Balance accounts by reconciling entries  
  • Maintain and balance general ledger by preparing the trial balance.  
  • Prepare financial reports by collecting, analyzing, and summarizing account information.  
  • Comply with local, provincial and federal legal requirements.   
  • Monitor any variances in the budget.  

What skills do bookkeepers must-have?  

Although bookkeeping is finance-oriented, don’t be alarmed. What you need is basic mathematics, and there is much more to the job. According to Monster, some of the essential qualifications and skills employees seek are:  

  • Data entry skills  
  • Accounts payable/receivable  
  • Account reconciliation  
  • Software knowledge – QuickBooks and Sage 50  
  • Knowledge of HST, WSIB and Payroll (Preferred)  
  • Analyzing information  
  • Creating reports  
  • Analyzing information  
  • Attention to detail  
  • Team player  
  • Communication skills  

 What is the difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant?  

Although bookkeeping sounds a lot like something an accountant would have to do, it is, in fact, a part of general accounting practice.   

A bookkeeper provides an accountant with the trial balance, which is a consolidation of all ledger accounts. Accountants use these reports derive the balance sheet, income statement and statement of cash flow. Bookkeepers lay the groundwork for accountants to prepare and analyze financial statements.   


How much do bookkeepers earn?  

Bookkeepers, also known as accounting technicians, are employed throughout the public and private sectors, self-employment is another avenue. Bookkeepers usually earn between C$15/hr to C$35/hr. The average wage for this profession for the year 2019 in Ontario was C$22.60/hr.   

The employment outlook will be fair for bookkeepers in Ontario for the 2019-2021 period and has been relatively stable in Ontario over the past decade.  


Education Requirements

In Ontario, Canada, the typical education requirements for a bookkeeping job need completion of secondary school and recognized professional accounting program. You don’t need any specific certifications for this profession. However, hands-on training during a diploma program will help you gain knowledge and experience in the domain.   


Advancement Opportunities

Bookkeeping gives you lots of career advancement opportunities into other accounting positions. An entry-level in accounting departments; you will gain valuable experience on-the-job and understand the actual working. You don’t have to invest a hefty amount into a bookkeeping course. You can continue to work while advancing education in accounting.  

You can advance your career as an accountant, financial advisor or business analyst.   


Your first step towards your new career with BizTech College!  

Do you want to gain knowledge and hands-on training in bookkeeping? BizTech College’s Professional Accounting, Bookkeeping and Payroll Administration not only introduces you to bookkeeping but equips you with know-how into professional accounting and payroll administration.   

Software knowledge is essential in every profession; thus, the college offers training and a free subscription to the latest accounting software – QuickBooks and Sage 50.   

Interested in Payroll Administration? Learn more about the key traits of a successful payroll administrator.   

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