The other day a potential client rang me and said she was looking at our website and wanted to know how remote bookkeeping worked and more importantly, how it could work for her and her business. I was a little surprised by her questions because I’ve been working remotely or “telecommuting” as it’s been labelled of late, for years now as have many others. I went on to explain how I work and how my clients work with me but I got the feeling that she wasn’t entirely convinced. It made me think that there are probably others out there who don’t quite understand how bookkeeping can be done remotely so I thought I’d write a blog that would help to explain how it all works.
In our last blog, we told you about our new paperless bookkeeping system that we now use for our own bookkeeping/accounting. It works so well that we have extended the idea to that of how we store our clients’ records in our desire for a paperless office.
Our system for storing client records used to look something like this picture!
It’s common knowledge now that if you are using cloud accounting software, you have access to bank feeds i.e. your bank transactions are pulled into your accounting file from your bank institution on a daily basis via the magic of the “cloud”. This means that you have up to the minute updates on exactly what’s happening in your business accounts. This is a great thing – no doubt. It also means the amount of time you would otherwise spend on tedious data entry is considerably reduced – what’s not to like? Undoubtedly bank feeds have been a real boon for business owners and bookkeepers alike but lately, due to some recent events in our BAS Agent practice, I have started to wonder if we actually can or should trust bank feeds. Let me tell you what happened……
Okay so you run a small business and things are super busy! You’ve got lots to organise – employees, clients, projects, supplies, website, marketing and dare I say it, yes, the bookkeeping and tax compliance tasks! Some business owners prepare their own books but many are outsourcing the task to professional bookkeepers instead. Some prefer to employ an onsite bookkeeper but others have chosen to use the services of virtual bookkeepers. They have done this for various reasons, the main ones being:
As small business owners, they are probably operating a home-based business and do not want someone regularly coming into their home/family space.
They operate from a formal office which does not have the space for another worker, desk and equipment etc. or
Their business is primarily mobile and as such, they don’t really utilise a physical office.
So just what is a virtual bookkeeper and how does virtual bookkeeping work? What are the pitfalls or cons or virtual bookkeeping? Today we answer these questions and more……..
A virtual bookkeeper is someone who works remotely, utilising current technologies and the internet to complete bookkeeping and other tasks for his clients. Virtual bookkeeping is not location-dependent. A virtual bookkeeper can offer services to clients Australia-wide (or perhaps worldwide), without leaving his office. The internet, current technologies and cloud services all make this possible. At e-BAS Accounts, while we do have some local clients whom we see in person, we are essentially virtual bookkeepers and maintain clientele in several Australian states even though we are Victorian-based. To ensure the virtual relationship runs smoothly, we use a system which we will share with you today. Here is a summary of how our virtual bookkeeping system works. If you would like to read the extended version, head here.
We are trying something different this week for our blog (well different for us anyway!). We have created a video blog as part of our “How to” series for Saasu. Hope you like it. Please leave your comments below and let us know how we can improve our videos or any changes you think should be made etc.