A bookkeeper/accountant is the primary source of everything related to the company’s day to day transactions involving financial matters. Your bookkeeper’s needs strong accounting skills and attention to detail is of utmost importance. The amount of work depends on the structure of the organisation and on how big the company is. Bookkeepers/accountants are required to be well organised at all time and in the first instance needs to be aware when their quarterly, monthly, weekly and/or daily tasks are to be completed. Using a diary whether written or computerised is a must to record task such as the date for completing your BAS return or when employees are paid their wages. Remember give yourself sufficient time to prepare the work allowing a few days prior to the due date.
To understand what a bookkeeper/accountant does on a day to day, we have listed below some of the responsibilities of a bookkeeper/accountant:
A bookkeeper/accountant should maintains and update the company’s financial records either daily or at least weekly. This is done to ensure all transactions are reported and accounted for. It is important to balance and update the financial records on a timely basis, to ensure there are only minimal lapses in time when reporting.
Timing is everything. Work out what needs to be done daily vs weekly or monthly. Plan your day accordingly. Focus on the important activities and then do the urgent tasks. As an example prepare your cash flow either weekly or monthly and this will determine whether you need to focus on collections daily or any other pending task.
Paying suppliers should be undertaken weekly or monthly depending on the credit terms. This will save an enormous amount of time however expect to pay the odd “urgent” supplier at short notice. If you have to make payments daily, organise this to be completed in a productive manner and look to stream line to process.
Depending on the business, payroll is of vital importance and needs to be completed accurately and on time. Set up your payroll in line with staff and management expectation be it weekly, fortnightly or monthly.
Other activities which a bookkeeper/accountant would look after would be:
- Petty Cash
- Fixed Assets
- Liaison with your Tax Accountant
- Preparation of Management Accounts
- Bank Reconciliation
There is no fixed daily routine for a bookkeeper/accountant however proper planning and creating the right expectation will determine what is required and when.
Cash Flow is the life blood of any business. A business cannot survive without proper funding and financial management. As a bookkeeper/accountant you need to keep management informed as to what is happening in the business. Without cash flow management a business will not succeed or burn up the resources of the shareholder without proper justification. Shareholders, Directors, Banks, Lenders and suppliers expect to receive a return on their investments, loans or supply of goods. Poor Cash Flow planning will disenfranchise your stakeholders and result in your suppliers putting you on credit hold and/or your bank withdrawing your credit lines.
Maintaining good Cash Flow Management will also allow you to take advantage of settlement discount when you pay your suppliers early or at very least maintain your credit terms. Irregular payments to your suppliers indicate poor cash flow management or a fundamental problem of your business.
Your accounting records needs to be update regularly so you can easily and accurately prepare Cash Flow Forecast. Depending on the requirements of the business, your bookkeeper/accountant should maintain these records and provide you with the feedback you require to run your business.
Preparation of Budgets
A Bookkeeper/accountant knows primarily the company’s financial status. He or she is also accountable for ensuring a budget is prepared annually and revised from time to time depending on the business requirements.
Budgets are usually prepare 2 to 3 months before year end and circulated to management to obtain their feedback and commitment going forward. Budgets are the tool use to monitor success and/or deviation of the business strategy. Documenting the intention of management in a form of a budget forms the key ingredient of a business plan.
The results of preparing a budget will enable management to focus on areas of the business which produce the highest return to their stake holders. Senior management are remunerated based on achieving or exceeding the annual budget. A bookkeeper/accountant is the gatekeeper of the organisation and should be reporting monthly or quarterly on the results by producing monthly or quarterly management accounts.
Should you need the service of a bookkeeper/accountant, feel free to contact Pacific Accounting. As a primary accounting firm in Sydney, we live to the fullest expectation of the responsibilities of a bookkeeper/accountant with our 35 years of experience in the industry.