What Is a Bookkeeper and When Do I Need One?

Does managing your business financials give you a headache? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Between the cost, time, and paperwork, it’s no wonder that 40% of small business owners state that bookkeeping and taxes are the worst part of owning their own business.

Do you want to spend less time pouring over your books and have more time to spend with your family or devote to the crucial aspects of running your business? Free up your time and reduce the stress and hassle of managing your accounts by working with a professional bookkeeper.

Keep reading to learn more about the services a bookkeeper can provide for your business and the benefits of having a professional keeping your books.

Keeping the Books: What Do Bookkeepers Do?

Bookkeepers have training in recording, categorizing, and reconciling accounts and financial transactions. They can handle a wide variety of responsibilities depending on your business needs — anything from managing financial accounts to assisting with HR and payroll functions. While most bookkeepers focus on preparing and reporting, some also offer accounting services such as analyzing financial reports and suggesting business improvements.

Bookkeepers commonly provide the following services (and more!):

  • Recording Financial Transactions: Double-checking that all transactions are accounted for in your books or digital accounting programs.
  • Reconciling Accounts: Ensuring that two sets of records — such as accounting software reports and an account — align.
  • Managing Accounts Receivable and Payable: Timely handling of invoices, statements, collections, vendor bills, and payments.
  • Assisting with Tax Filing: Communicating account details to tax preparers for accurate tax filing.
  • Preparing Financial Statements: Creating profit and loss statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements.
  • Processing Payroll: Managing timesheets, processing paychecks, inputting payroll data, and other HR and payroll functions.

RELATED ARTICLE: 5 Bookkeeping Tips for Small Businesses

Benefits of Professional Bookkeeping Services

Before we jump into some of the benefits of having a professional keep your books, let’s talk about your bookkeeping options. First, you can become a bookkeeper professional yourself, but that takes time and effort — and spreadsheets full of numbers usually aren’t very thrilling for most people. Your second option is to hire an in-house bookkeeper, which could be quite costly.

The third option is to outsource your bookkeeping needs. By working with a company that handles bookkeeping services, like S.H. Block Tax Services, you can pick and choose which services you want and only pay for what your business needs.

So why should you consider professional bookkeeping services? Besides no longer having to make sense of rows and rows of numbers for hours on end, there are several additional benefits.

Bookkeepers Provide a Professional Touch

Bookkeepers have experience with accounting and financial software and are capable of troubleshooting issues and discrepancies as soon as they arise. They can also help you make payments on time to avoid late fees and ensure that you are compliant with the latest financial regulations.

Enjoy Better Work-Life Balance

As a business owner, you spend your workdays focused on the critical aspects of running your business, which means bookkeeping responsibilities are often an afterthought. Many business owners end up taking care of these tasks at home in the evenings or spending their weekend pouring over accounts because something isn’t adding up? Outsourcing a bookkeeper can reduce this stress and help you keep work from spilling over into your personal life.

Bookkeeping Services Save Time and Money

Recent studies suggest that, depending on the size of your business and frequency of financial transactions, you could be spending anywhere from 20 to 120 hours on bookkeeping-related tasks each year. That’s time you could be spending on core business needs and overall development and growth, let alone your typical day-to-day job requirements.

Outsource Your Bookkeeping Needs for Hassle-Free Taxes

In general, bookkeepers help reduce some of the hassle and worry during tax season by working with your tax preparers. S.H. Block Tax Services can take this one step further. As both tax authorities and bookkeeping experts, we can provide a seamless tax experience that optimizes your returns and minimizes errors.

How Do I Know When I Need a Professional Bookkeeper?

If managing your financial accounts and transactions is taking up a large chunk of your time at work or spilling into your personal life, it’s time to consider a bookkeeping service. Or, if you have to block off hours of your week, grit your teeth, and drink a whole pot of coffee before you can sit down and keep your books, it’s time to outsource. Do any of the following statements apply to you or your business?

1. Our Books Are Consistently Outdated

Are your financial records always out of date? Do you wait until the end of the year right before tax season before even looking at your accounts and books? Let a professional keep you up to date. Not only will you avoid late fees, but you’ll also catch issues sooner and have a better understanding of your business performance.

2. Bookkeeping Gives Me a Headache

Save yourself the headache. If bookkeeping is something you truly dread, you’re going to spend as little time on it as possible, which could lead to inaccuracies and cause you even more headaches.

3. Bookkeeping Takes Hours of My Time Each Month

If managing your accounts and financials is taking more time than you have (or want) to spend, outsourcing can free up your time for other business or personal pursuits. Bookkeepers have experience handling accounts and finances and can maintain your books with greater efficiency.

4. I Frequently Fall Behind on Paying and Collecting Bills

Are your bills and receipts stored haphazardly? Do you have trouble finding financial documents you need and keeping up with payments? A professional bookkeeper can organize all of your financial data and pull documents and reports for you when you need them, helping you to keep track of your bills and payments.

Professional Bookkeeping Services From S.H. Block Tax Services

At S.H. Block Tax Services, our bookkeeping services are designed to make your life easier. Let our experts take care of all the number crunching, account organization, and paperwork so you can concentrate on running your business and spending time with the family.

Contact us today by calling 410-793-1231 or completing the brief contact form to the right.


A Look at Accounting and Taxes – A Burden on Small Businesses. (2015, January 22). Score. Retrieved from https://www.score.org/resource/infographic-look-accounting-and-taxes

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.