If you need to seek out some financial support for your business, you may be wondering whether it's best to seek out an accountant or bookkeeper. Both of these professionals can play a role in small business, so read on to find out what the major differences are.
What Bookkeepers Do
Bookkeepers play a role in the operational side of your business finances. They are the people to turn to if you need help with keeping your bank statements up to date, reconciling credit card bills, sending out invoices and accepting payments, and other related tasks. They are there to take some of the grunt work out of keeping the business' checking accounts afloat.
What Accountants Do
Small business accounting comes into play when you need more complicated financial advice. For instance, you might want to have an accountant look at your taxes before you send them in to see if they can crunch the numbers and reduce your tax bill. Another occasion where an accountant would be relevant is when you want to analyze your business' financial health, or potentially change the status or direction of your business. While the education of bookkeepers can vary, accountants must be certified; you can count on the highest level of financial expertise when you hire these specialists, although the costs may be much higher.
Which Should You Choose?
If you're a small business that's just starting out, you may have a greater need for bookkeeping services. A great bookkeeper will help to ensure that you're presenting a professional face in your daily transactions with clients, such as during payment and invoice transactions that may occur on a daily basis. When your business first grows to a size where it makes sense to hire a financial staff member, many small businesses opt to go with an experienced bookkeeper.
You may still have some needs for an accountant, and in those cases, many small businesses like to have an accounting firm that they work with on a regular basis. This way, the firm can become familiar with how your business operates, and you'll have to spend less time playing catch-up whenever you need their help,
Of course, there are ways to take advantage of both services. You might choose to budget for specialists in each area and use them on an as-needed basis. There are plenty of great bookkeeping services and accounting firms that accept occasional clients. For more information, contact companies like Bliss & Skeen CPAs.