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How do I go about finding a good bookkeeper?

How do I go about finding a good bookkeeper?

How do I go about finding a good outsourced bookkeeper? What are their hourly rates?

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20th Jul 2010 10:37

depends where you are

In the Midlands anything from £20 an hour seems to be the norm

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20th Jul 2010 10:56

.

Talk to other accountants in your area - assuming you have a good relationship with them.  Costs?  Pretty much whatever you are prepared to pay - £15-£30 an hour does seem to the the norm.

 

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20th Jul 2010 15:15

Massive opportunity

@FirstTab – I assume this is for clients but even if it for you I suggest you use a member of the ICB or IAB but also have systems the bookkeeper must follow. 

This way you are taking responsibility and delegating rather than abdicating it. You could get the bookkeeper to charge direct and have a recruitment and management service.  You can also offer management accounting and business coaching services or you could get the bookkeeper to charge you.

Pay the bookkeeper on the transaction and make sure the clients prime records allow effective processing – fast (150 transactions an hour) and accurate. Hourly rates are meaningless!

Massive opportunity so think carefully how you position yourself, package and price.

Bob Harper

Marketing for Accountants

 

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20th Jul 2010 20:31

dont be put off by the name

institute of agricultural secretaries excellent and highly qualified book keepers. vat, payroll and all the rest. typing if required, etc.

independant, travelling and members up and down the country.

reasonably priced with no ties to firms, etc.

versitile.

used them for years - excellent - just dont try to tell them their job! just what you want them to do, etc.

[email protected]

024-76669-6592

SECRETARY, MRS CHARLOTTE O'KANE.

there you are - problem solved even if your business is in town or urban areas.

 

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20th Jul 2010 20:36

p.s.

will also set up your system and speak with your accountant if necessary.

buuuuut do not expect big discounts from your annual audit as you might expect - why? - never found out, the accountant is always evasive on this matter!

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By help4u
21st Jul 2010 10:42

How do i go about finding a good book-keepr

Visit www.help4accountants.co.uk

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21st Jul 2010 10:46

Finding a bookkeeper..

We have some suggestions on our website which might help. www.thelocalbookkeeper.co.uk/what-is-a-bookkeeper.asp
All the best with your search

Alex
 

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21st Jul 2010 10:49

I.C.P.A.

Try contacting the I.C.P.A. who will be able to provide you with a list of their bookkeepers in your area.

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21st Jul 2010 10:52

Good Bookkeepers?

If you need them in the  North Wales/ Wirral Area you could do worse than try Books 'n' Stuff  http://www.alanandsue.co.uk/

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21st Jul 2010 11:26

ICB have a Free Find a Bookkeeper service

Check out http://www.bookkeepers.org.uk/Vacancy/Add

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21st Jul 2010 12:34

Quality is key

The perfect bookkeeper can add so much value to your business. Get it right and it's a brilliant investment, get it wrong and the consequences can be dire.

In my opinion, there are 3 key qualities to a great outsourced bookkeeper:

1.  Quality - the bookkeeper should be highly experienced and hold relevant qualifications

2.  Insurance - the bookkeeper should hold adequate PII

3.  Support from or working alongside a Chartered Accountant - to provide oversight of the bookkeepers work, plus the CA can provide analysis and reporting for you to ensure your numbers are meaningful. Together they can also streamline your processes to save time and (your!) money.

Hope this is helpful.  Any questions, please feel free to ask.

Kind regards,

Catherine Davis

http://www.urbanledgers.co.uk

 

 

 

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By chatman
21st Jul 2010 13:37

"150 transactions an hour"

Bob Harper - 150 transactions an hour sounds incredibly fast. What sort of source records does this estimate envisage inputting from?

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By arunpvr
21st Jul 2010 13:44

Good Book keeper

Good book keeping is down to training. So a well trained book keeper can do a good job. However with experience they tend to be more expensive. So then how can you get your book keeping sorted cost effectively without compromising on quality?

Visit www.giinfosys.com to know more!!

Accountants will also find this site useful especially when they look at the case studies and testimonial section.

Speak to me if I can be of any futher help. Contact details on website.

Regards

Arun

 

 

 

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21st Jul 2010 13:57

Compared to what?

@Chatman – yes, 150 transactions an hour is incredibly fast compared t0 20 which is what a firm was achieving on a job before I consulted to them.  However, if you think about it, it’s only one entry every 24 seconds.

To get over 100 an hour you need the records to be complete and cross-referenced. We developed a Small Business Handbook to ensure get the prime records to the standard and offered different prices based on the quantity, quality as well as the frequency and logistics.

Our record is 300 an hour but our software does two at a time (invoice and payment) and imports bank statements for reconciliation.

Bob Harper

Portfolio Marketing

 

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By chatman
21st Jul 2010 14:30

Doh!

I thought you said 150 transactions/minute. Cutting and pasting my response didn't help.

I'll get on the waiting list for a brain transplant.

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21st Jul 2010 14:58

the grey matter

just a question -

on developing this high speed system, was there an analysis as to the ohmage with respect to the laws of relativity to make sure the bookkeeper's grey matters circuits were up to the standards to make the system operational.

does the system rely on arithmetic? 

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By frauke
21st Jul 2010 15:32

IAB Members in Practice

Some of the members registered in Practice with the IAB can be found here: 

http://www.iab.org.uk/mems_practice.asp

 

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21st Jul 2010 17:40

electronical

as yet no response concerning the electronical aspect of the grey matter.

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21st Jul 2010 17:40

electronical

as yet no response concerning the electronical aspect of the grey matter.

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21st Jul 2010 18:16

What matters?

@Tomriv801 – not sure I understand the question but my answer is...

The idea with the software is that there are two users.  One sets the system up and the other just processes.  The set-up includes linking suppliers to expenses (e.g. BT can only go to telephone) so there is a lot of control over the processor. It then become keyboard skills rather than bookkeeping.  

Is that the right answer to the wrong question or does that answer your question?  It’s less about grey matter than what matters; systems and processes.

Bob Harper

Portfolio Marketing

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21st Jul 2010 19:27

TRY ME

I am a very good book-keeper and qualified accountant. If you are in the Lincolnshire area I will only charge you £10.00 per hour. I can complete your book-keeping either manually or on computer using spreadsheets or Sage Line 50. I would then quote you a very reasonable fee for completing your accounts and tax returns which would be anything from £300 to £1,500 per year, all depending on the size and complexity of your business. If interested e-mail on the address shown below.

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21st Jul 2010 21:51

the grey matter

all very well but it looks as if at least two globes of the grey matter is involved. the front and ante from what you have just explained.

therefore taking the principlrs of logic in the vein that 2 plus six equals nine - so derived from the understanding of your explanation - the rules of simple arithmetic are abandoned.

how do you apply this to a simple double entry system? written not computerized.

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21st Jul 2010 23:33

Applied logic

@Tomriv801 – it’s not so much the principle of logic but rather applied logic and my guess is that you do not own a greenhouse or have a shed.

Bob Harper

Marketing for Accountants

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22nd Jul 2010 02:38

ekectronical

most excellent greenhouse grown tomatoes this year. thank you.

the audit of production better than lastl

found rutgers medium the best variety as the main with aunt matilda's cherry red as my wife's favorite finger bowl.

as they say two amounts of grey matter better than one.

mushrooms in the shed and a ccouple of pigs and a dozen chickens in the yard.

so will never be hungry.

 

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22nd Jul 2010 08:37

How do I find a good book-keeper

Employ your own. That way you can charge competitive book-keeper rates, maintain the standard of your office, and ensure that your accounting software is used. Assign the book-keeper to one manager, so that queries are dealt with as they occur. So year-end is a "doddle".

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22nd Jul 2010 19:10

well done

Bob for getting a best reply!

The funny thing is that i commented first on this thread and said to ask you as you would know. The comment was removed as it was deemed to be sarcastic or something!  

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22nd Jul 2010 21:06

Seperate brand

@JCreswellTax – my replies are always the best!

PACraneFCA makes an excellent point and some firms have worked out that using a separate bookkeeping brand alongside the practice works really well. 

All non-accounting work can be billed separately which means the “accountants bill” is better value and the seperate brand is a great way of attracting business.  A firm we are working with using Crunchers is winning 9 out of 10 clients this way.  They have doubled over the last two years and are on-track to double in the next two years.

We designed Crunchers as a franchise but it works well as a marketing strategy/licence fro accountants.

Bob Harper

Portfolio Marketing

 

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By Spudsy
07th Sep 2010 18:36

Can I help?

Can I help I'm based in North Wales or is this not close to you?

I offer bookkeeping services to small busineses and sole traders evry thing from basic bookkeeping to managerment accounts. If your interested or just need a bit of advice or I can recommend someom=ne in your area come back to me.

It's always hard to get someone you can trust and can do the job.

-- www.bagofreceipts.co.uk www.image-uk.com

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By chatman
07th Sep 2010 19:25

Did you find a bookkeeper, FirstTab?

If so, how has it worked out so far and do you mind me asking what rate you ended up paying?

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08th Sep 2010 02:05

satellitical

myself and my good lady have just returned from a cruise from new york to, yes that last bastion of the empire - bermuda.

on board book keeping - not a trace.

order a bottle of wine and the purchase is immediately sent by satellite to ncl's head office in miami.

at the end of our magnificent holiday - and it was - we went to the reception desk. the girl pressed the button and the week's expenditure was immediately transmitted from miami to the printer at the desk. the money was immediately debited from our american express card. (we use this as amex deals with problems of overcharging, bad goods, etc.)

now that is what i call good modern day book keeping.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

tip - fresh strawberries are always non-existent they say. don't believe it. on our reluctant return, yes. there was a large pallet full being loaded into the hold. just tell them you saw strawberries being loaded.

1500 passengers off board by 11 am - 1500 new passengers on board by 3.00pm and our home for the week was sailing back down the hudson again to the island of our dreams with - yes = the strawberries.

subject -

stock control of the strawberries. perhaps contributors to this esteemed site may be able to assist as to control of this particular inventory.

bath towels we were warned were counted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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08th Sep 2010 02:15

p.s.

chatting at dinner we found we were talking to the captain's mother=in=law. he being scandinavian.

she told us she had recently sold the family farm for 25.5 million dollars to a developer and had passed it onto the daughter who lived on the ship.

at the farewell show he was the first happy looking ship's captain i have seen!

 

oh yes - scandinavian/u.s./martime tax - to be in keeping with this esteemed site - comment required re the daughter's bookkeeping.

 

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08th Sep 2010 09:33

Bookkeeper Found

Thanks for the response on this topic.

I have found a bookkeeper  who is reasonably local to me. The houry rate I pay this person is £13 ph.

She use to be a member of my team (when I was an employee) a few years ago. She called me looking for bookkeeping work.

 

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By chatman
08th Sep 2010 12:27

Bookkeeper Found

And how has she worked out so far? 

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08th Sep 2010 12:52

question

can she be relied on to count the strawberries accurately?

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08th Sep 2010 13:41

Mixed views

At the moment I have mixed views on the bookkeeper. Work is done to a good standard but deadlines are a problem. I will see how the next few months go.

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08th Sep 2010 15:09

remember

no matter who you employ - you will have to check the strawberries yourself.

seasonal.

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By chatman
08th Sep 2010 15:56

Mixed Views

Let us know if it becomes a problem, as I may have a suggestion. 

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08th Sep 2010 16:21

for agony aunt

she said half of them were bad and had to be thrown away.

problem is that i do not have time to count them myself.

only enough left for six dipped in chocolate - wife's birthday coming on - what do i do.

and she is a qualified bookeeper.

 

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By chatman
08th Sep 2010 17:13

Over my head

tomriv801's posts are all way over my head. Is it only me?

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08th Sep 2010 18:41

flattered

i am greatly flattered that the electonical revolutions of my yerg (invert) matter is above the understanding of most!

 

to summarize -

i cannot see for the life of me understand the f===== problem in finding a good accounts girl.

unless, of course the originator is concerned about the inventory concerning the strawberries.

cadbury's is still the best while stocks last for the dip but dont tell her that.

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09th Sep 2010 09:33

tomriv801 - fail to understand

tomriv801 I completely fail to understand what you mean. I am with chatman on this point.

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By Monsoon
09th Sep 2010 09:41

Employ!

We took the decision to employ bookkeepers instead of outsourcing. Bottom line: cheaper for us, and more control.

We did have one outsourced bookkeeper and she made a right mess, despite coming hightly recommended, loads of experience, qualified and charging top dollar.

Our employees are brilliant and it was definitely the right choice.

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By Spudsy
09th Sep 2010 12:04

employ or not

I think a balanced view is need I offer freelancing bookeeping services to small and medium sized businesses, because I'm confident about my abilities I always offer the choose to new clients of my help in bringing their records up to date and then help them recruit a person if they want / need it. Most prefer to keep using me on a regular basis (smaller businesses it works out cheaper to pay me for a few hours a week / month and they don't get the 'ers NI costs) and I have a wealth of knowledge that they wouldn't get paying a lower rate per hour. Basically you get what you pay for. Unless your unlucky to get some pillock who gives the impression he/ she can do the job which isn't restricted to Bookkeepers it applies to all industries.

-- www.bagofreceipts.co.uk www.image-uk.com

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09th Sep 2010 12:29

important

just make sure you count the strawberries yourself.

accountants call it stock control.

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By Monsoon
09th Sep 2010 12:55

I'd rather eat the strawberries

It's horses for courses, employment works for us, subcontracting works for others. For the amount of bookkeeping hours we have (plenty and growing), it's far cheaper to employ and we retain much more control.

 

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09th Sep 2010 14:45

question

?chocolate dipped?

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11th Mar 2014 09:14

Somebody you can trust

Hi FirstTab,


Lots of comments on here abour rates and chocolate dipping, so I thought I'd leave my two cents and let you know some of the reasons why our clients pick us, in hope that it will allow you to find somebody in your area. 



From my expereince, our clients are not just looking at a good hourly rate, but for somebody who they can actually trsu with their books, not just to maintain a professional working attitude and provide a reliable service, but also somebody they can trust to do things right. There are a lot of corner cutting methods when it comes to bookkeeping, and the best bookkeepers won't use any of them. You should find somebody who is transparent with their methods as well as being able to prove their skills either by experience or qualifictaion (or better yet, a combination of both).




At Owl Verity for example, we meet all of our clients face to face and run through the whole process (many also have tax accounts done too which needs a lot more explaining than the bookkeeping side of things)., and also how we are going to report everything, and the benifits the client will see. It is possible that our rate helps as we do seem to be on the lower end of the spectrum, but it is our honesty and passion that gives our clients confidence in us, as well as our consistancy when it comes to our working standard.



You don't have to say yes to the first bookkeeper that comes your way - find one that understands your needs as much as they understand your business.



We also think it is helpful to have somebody local, although it is not a requirement. We have dealt with clients a bit further afield and just prefer the more personal approach you can have with somebody on y9our doorstep - although i guess there is Skype.



Good luck in your search, and if you would like any advise, we will be happy to help you find somebody in your area - just drop by www.owlverity.co.uk and get in touch.

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