Is Your Online Bookkeeper Certified?
What Is a Certified Online Bookkeeper?
A certified online bookkeeper is a bookkeeping professional who:
- Has obtained industry certifications to demonstrate that their skills meet industry standards and that they are proficient with specific accounting software.
- Provides their services online for greater convenience and efficiency for their clients.
Why Is Certification Important for Bookkeepers?
Anyone can say they are a bookkeeper, but a certified bookkeeper has proven they have the skills and experience necessary to properly take care of your financial records.
Since bookkeeping is a common administrative function, people may pick up a few basic bookkeeping skills if they work in an office. Still, there’s a significant difference between understanding accounts receivable and payable and knowing how to compute depreciation or create a corporate earnings report. When a bookkeeper is certified, you can have confidence in their knowledge and qualifications to manage your books.
The Accounting Meister online bookkeeping team believes that certification is one way to ensure our clients receive exceptional service and support. In addition to individual certifications, our bookkeepers are managed by a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) with QuickBooks® ProAdvisor Advanced certification. Our expertise allows us to provide a high level of accounting and bookkeeping support and instruct others in these skills. Contact us to learn more about our services.
Types of Bookkeeping Certification
There are three types of bookkeeping certificate programs.
- Certified Bookkeeper (CB): The American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB) provides this professional certificate, which requires a four-part exam to ascertain proficiency with bookkeeping practices and functions like accruals, deferrals, payroll, and fraud protection. CB recipients also must have two years of experience and agree to adhere to a code of ethics.
- Certified Public Bookkeeper (CPB): The National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers (NACPB) issues the CPB certification to bookkeeping professionals who pass a stringent four-part exam. The exam requires knowledge of a wide range of bookkeeping fundamentals. In addition, those who attain a CPB must verify their experience and education, agree to an ethics code, and attend continuing education courses every year.
- Software Certifications: Many of the leading brands of accounting and bookkeeping software offer certifications. QuickBooks® is one of the most popular accounting software brands that offer certification. And other popular bookkeeping software packages also provide training/certification.
Certification requirements vary depending on the standards established by each certification program.
Freelance or In-House?
Businesses with annual revenue exceeding a million dollars or employing more than 30 people will probably want to hire someone in-house to manage their accounting and bookkeeping needs. Companies operating below those thresholds typically use the services of an as-needed freelance bookkeeper, a local accounting firm, or an online bookkeeping service that can do the work remotely.
Having a full-time person on the payroll for bookkeeping can get expensive, but if your business is large enough, it’s vital to have someone on staff.
Not sure which option is best for you? Get in touch with our team of experts at Accounting Meister. We can provide accounting and bookkeeping training and tutorials, plus we can take over the books if that works better for you.
Online Experience and Technical Skills Count
A certified bookkeeper has demonstrated that they possess the necessary skills and education to be a well-qualified bookkeeper, but working online requires additional skills with technology. If you hire a bookkeeper online, will be working in an online environment, and will communicate virtually, choosing someone with online work experience is essential. A bookkeeper who can reconcile your bank statements but struggles with email attachments, file sharing, or online meetings will be very challenging to work with online. So it’s important to ask candidates about their experiences working online. Are they able to use the same apps you do? What’s their level of computer proficiency?
Online Certified Bookkeeper vs. Accountant
Although a certified bookkeeper can provide essential services to a business, they aren’t a replacement for an accountant. A bookkeeper is focused on daily details and ensures that financial records are current and accurate. An accountant looks at the larger financial picture and offers a business owner insights for long-term planning. They prepare forecasts and analyze financial data, looking for trends and possible areas for growth or improvement. Accountants may also prepare tax returns and other financial reports. A good bookkeeper maintains the information that an accountant uses for reports and analysis.
Benefits of Hiring a Certified Online Bookkeeper
There are distinct benefits to hiring a certified online bookkeeper. First, accredited bookkeepers are less likely to make mistakes because their experience has been tested and certified. And they invest in continuing education to keep up with the latest regulations and best practices. They also understand how to track and monitor budgets, which helps prevent overspending. And certified online bookkeepers typically provide monthly financial statements to help you manage your company’s financial health. Finally, a CB or CPB certification gives you peace of mind knowing your bookkeeper is proficient.
Good bookkeeping is an integral part of any successful business. At Accounting Meister, we help startups and small businesses with their bookkeeping and accounting needs. Not only can we manage your books, but we can also help you learn more about bookkeeping and accounting. We know there’s no replacement for good bookkeeping, and we’re here to ensure you have all the tools you need to balance your business’ books. Contact us today for information or schedule an initial consultation.