What is the role of a bookkeeper?

Ever wondered what the roll of a bookkeeper is? Simply put, a bookkeepers role is extremely important for your business and in this article we discuss why.

28 September 2022
Reading time
Around 3 min
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What do bookkeepers do?

Bookkeepers aren’t just employed to record your finances, they’re also responsible for providing you with current and accurate data about your business and staying in tune with it. Bookkeepers usually provide reports to a company’s owners and managers to help them make informed decisions about their business’ financial development or fiscal strategies. Bookkeepers and accountants often share roles, such as preparing reports and tax returns.

What are bookkeepers tasked with?

Bookkeepers oversee data entry and bank reconciliation for a business. These underpin all other duties of a bookkeeper and without them - the dominos would all fall over.

  • Data Entry is about recording financial transactions and balancing the books

  • Bank Reconciliation involves cross-referencing your books with bank statements to authenticate them

What else do bookkeepers do?

Create and send invoices as well as following up to ensure they get paid

Receive invoices to ensure they are accurate and paid in time

Calculate pay, also known as payroll

What types of bookkeepers are there?

Not all bookkeepers are made the same - you might be surprised to learn there’s different types!

Kitchen table bookkeepers are usually a small business owner or somebody close to them. They might be employed by the owner or have another job entirely but usually end up becoming the de facto bookkeeper for the business owner because nobody else is around. They take of basic needs such as processing records, invoices, payments and paperwork.

Sole trading bookkeepers are one-person bookkeeping machines. They’ve set up bookkeeping businesses and began acquiring clients from family, friends or word of mouth. They’re experienced enough to handle most or all bookkeeping responsibilities and have likely been trained or certified by this point.

Practice bookkeepers are part of a firm exclusively for bookkeeping - not to be confused with accounting firms! They usually provide a range of default packages instead than tailor-made solutions for their clients.

Virtual bookkeepers are real people (not robots!) who work entirely remotely for their clients. They communicate via voice or video calls and use online accounting softwares to keep their operational costs down. They might be a sole trader, part of a firm, abroad or outsourced.

Bookkeepers throughout history

Did you know there’s evidence of bookkeepers dating all the way back to 7000 BC? There are archives of bookkeeping records in many former civilisations including Babylon, Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire.

If we fast forward to the 15th century, author Benedetto Cotrugli’s Of Commerce and the Perfect Merchant detailed bookkeeping methods and Luca Pacioli’s Review of Arithmetic, Geometric, Ratio and Proportion.


As you can see from above, it is crucial to ensure you have an expert bookkeeper to allow your business to make sure its finances are in check. If you are looking for a bookkeeper for your business then please book in a call and a member of our team will get in touch.

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