what's the minimum knowledge one should have before taking on clients?
Hi guys, I'm fairly new to bookkeeping. I've been doing it for 6 months but have only been working with 1 client.
I'm trying to figure out what's the base I need to have before I start taking on more clients. Is there any minimum amount of knowledge I should have before doing so? Are there any courses I can take that would cover all the basics?
I was in your situation also. I worked with one client for a year or so, learned QuickBooks Online and bookkeeping (never had any accounting or bookkeeping training). Take advantage of the software vendors training videos and read lots on the web about accounting and bookkeeping fundamentals.
It's hard to list the minimum knowledge; it depends on your clients' needs.
When you feel pretty comfortable with your ability to do the basic stuff of transactions and reports with your initial client, you can take on additional clients, preferably similar to what you're already doing. You should probably specialize in a type like commercial small business or small nonprofit. The rules are different for each.
I found it important to restrict who I would take on, in my case requiring books be done in QuickBooks Online only (no desktop), and payroll done by a full service payroll outfit so I didn't have to mess with all that. I also don't do taxes, but keep the books well-ordered and classified to make it easy for the tax accountant.
That is a difficult question, as each of us has different experience and education. Penn Foster offers a great self-paced course in bookkeeping, that covers all the basics of accounting. You can also take Accounting classes at a local community college. My personal opinion, is that you should have a good understanding of the basics, and completely understand debits and credits. Then, you must also learn the software you plan to use.
The more you learn, the more confident you will become. Jumping in can also work, as long as you are able to tell a client, that you may not know something, but will research it and get the answer. Research could include google, asking a CPA, asking here or other colleagues.
Hope this helps.
I received my accounting degree over 20 years ago. I have a basic understanding of accounting but a lot has changed especially in technology! I have little job experience (only a couple of years). I need to brush up on financial statements, payroll and definitely need tax help. I would like to start my own bookkeeping service. I am wondering what services I would have to offer and how to start. I really feel I could use a mentor (if anyone is interested). I have contemplated taking a course from one of those "start your own bookkeeping business" such as bookkeeper launch. What are your thoughts?