There is often an assumption that bookkeepers and accountants are much of a muchness, they both perform the same duties & tasks for your business, the books! This is not the case. Understanding the difference between the roles & responsibilities of Bookkeepers vs Accountants can be extremely beneficial, and allow you to take advantage of what they can each add to your business.
What does a Bookkeeper do?
The bookkeeper records daily financial transactions in a reliable & dependable manner. Bookkeeping is the stepping stone of accounting and is a fundamental aspect to the smooth running & overall financial viability of a business.
Common tasks performed by a bookkeeper include:
- Bank & Credit Card Reconciliations
- Purchases, receipts, sales & payments
- Managing payroll
- Processing of invoices
- Debtor & Creditor management
- Management of cashflow
- Payroll Tax payments & reconciliation
- Superannuation payments & reconciliation
- BAS & IAS preparation and lodgement
- Prepares reliable reports for Accountants
What does an Accountant do?
The accountant looks at the big picture and verifies the information provided by the bookkeeper for a specific accounting period. They offer high level financial & taxation advice. Accountants are more focused on analysing and reporting on financial data which can be easily interpreted by owners & investors etc.
Common tasks performed by an accountant include:
- Prepare adjusting entries
- Calculate depreciation
- Preparation of financial statements
- Preparation and lodgement of Tax returns
- Financial forecasting
- Strategic tax planning
- Bring key financial indicators together
All in all, bookkeepers and accountants share common goals, and both parties contribute differently to the long term financial success of a business, at varying stages of the financial cycle. Bookkeeping is a platform to accounting. Whilst the two professions remain inseparable it is important to gauge and differentiate the different roles both the bookkeeper and accountant play in your business.