If you enjoy working with numbers and have an eye for detail, bookkeeping can offer you a career that will see you take on meaningful roles crucial to the effective running and success of every enterprise. Bookkeeping jobs also pay well and give you opportunities to work on-site or remotely.
Here, we take a closer look at this exciting line of work and give you practical advice on how to become a bookkeeper.
Is a bookkeeping career right for you?
The bookkeeping industry is made up of people with varying personalities and from every walk of life. While great diversity exists among bookkeepers, there are common characteristics and soft skills that suggest a bookkeeping job could be a good career choice for you; if you:
- Enjoy working with numbers.
- Have an eye for detail so you can pick up even the smallest errors.
- Want to learn new accounting software programs like Xero, QuickBooks and MYOB.
- Possess a strong work ethic so you can work long hours at certain times, like tax season.
- Personal and professional integrity because you’ll be trusted with a business’s finances.
- Communication skills will help you explain financial information to your clients or employer, and you’ll work well in a team.
Formal bookkeeper certifications
You don’t have to have a university-level qualification to work as a bookkeeper, but you will need a solid foundation in the form of a certification. Let’s take a closer look.
Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping FNS40217
Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping FNS40217 takes around six to 12 months to complete and gives you a solid grounding in key accounting and bookkeeping fundamentals. These include how to prepare financial reports, lodging business and instalment activity statements, as well as setting up payroll systems and using emotional intelligence and ethical awareness to work effectively. You can study this accredited certification online, which means you have flexibility and convenience, and once you’ve graduated, you’ll be ready to set your bookkeeping career in motion. You can find out more about the career pathways of a Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping FNS40217 in our Ab2 website blog.
This certificate course is also an excellent choice if you aren’t sure whether you want to work as a bookkeeper or an accountant because it gives you a foundation in both disciplines. Here are a few quick comparisons of bookkeeper vs accountant careers.
- Bookkeepers are tasked with the day-to-day recording of financial transactions.
- Accountants are concerned with a wider picture, which can include things like data analysis and making sure businesses meet their tax obligations.
- Bookkeepers generate customer invoices, carry out bank reconciliations, process payroll and prepare the books for an accountant and more.
- Accountants review and analyse financial statements, assess the financial health of a business, make forecasts and advise business leaders when making financial decisions. They can also carry out audits and much more.
- A bookkeeper’s resume must show an industry-recognised certification in order to get a job.
- An accountant needs to graduate with a university-level qualification to be employed.
BAS Agent Skill Set FNSSS00004
Another useful certification is the BAS Agent Skill Set FNSSS00004 course. This is an excellent addition to an existing bookkeeping certification. In this course, which takes about two to three months, you’ll learn to carry out business activity and how to manage instalment activity statement responsibilities, as well as establishing and maintaining payroll systems. Graduates achieve certification as a registered BAS Agent with the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) when certain criteria have been met.
Short course bookkeeping certifications are key to opening doors around the globe. Make sure when choosing who you’ll study with, that courses are custom-built by industry experts with decades of practical experience and knowledge. This means you’ll be armed with top-notch skills and understanding and be job-ready the moment you graduate.
What you can expect to earn
A bookkeeper salary will vary depending on your qualifications and experience. The industry and city you’re employed in, will also affect your pay. To give you an idea of the sort of salaries you can expect to earn as a bookkeeper, the Australian national average is $40,000 a year or $29.38 an hour.
A note on navigating your career path
Deciding the best courses to take that will set you on the right career path can be daunting, but we’re here to help. The Ab2 Institute of Accounting was created to serve those who want to get ahead in the bookkeeping and financial industries by offering the latest courses and thinking from industry experts to help you move your career forward and stay relevant every step of the way.
Contact us today to find out how we can partner with you to walk the exciting path ahead.