Although you may have got your bookkeeper’s details through the recommendation of a friend or business ally, have you ever stopped to ask them the right questions? Do you even know what the right questions are? If you haven’t asked your bookkeeper the following questions, or they can’t answer effectively, perhaps it’s time you considered switching.
What is the scope of the bookkeeping work?
Every business is different. Therefore, it’s vital that you establish just what services you need to enlist your bookkeeper for, and what you can do on your own.
Are they registered and qualified?
Depending on what services you require, some bookkeepers will have a diploma, an accounting degree or they may even be Chartered Accountants or CPAs. If your bookkeeper is going to be lodging your BAS, they should also be a registered BAS agent.
What is their level of expertise?
Ask your bookkeeper about the methods they use to review their own work, as well as how they are going to process your accounts accurately and on-time, whilst also communicating with you.
How familiar are they with your industry?
It’s always beneficial for your bookkeeper to have an understanding of the industry that your business is operating in. Check to see if they are aware if the industry you work in, or if they aren’t, how willing they are to familiarise themselves.
How do they communicate with their clients?
Processing transactions is only one part of bookkeeping. In order for your business to have effective accounting processes in place, you will need to have regular communication channels open. Ask your bookkeeper how they are going to be communicating with you, and ascertain if their language is clear, concise and makes sense to you.
What can you expect around delivery times and response times?
Ensure you know how frequently you expect to hear from your bookkeeper, and what you should expect from them each week or month (depending on the relationship you have).
How do they protect their clients?
Your bookkeeper will know all the sensitive financial details of your business. For this reason, you need to know that you can trust them. Ensure that you ask about their internal controls and segregation of duties, so you know that your information is kept safe.
How do they price their services?
Establish whether you will be paying per week, per month, per interaction or by the hour. Some bookkeepers will have other ways they charge their clients, also. Ask your bookkeeper exactly what their pricing is, so you there are no hidden surprises down the track.
So, before you hire your bookkeeper, make sure that you have asked them all the important questions. As well as this, it’s important to keep in mind that the general rapport you have with your bookkeeper, as well as the overall gut feeling you have about the relationship. If you are need of a friendly and professional bookkeeper or accountant, don’t hesitate to contact Next Level Accountants today.