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September 04 2015


How Can a Virtual Assistant Assist me to With My Bookkeeping Virtually?

Bookkeeper Houston
I purchase this question asked a great deal as many small business owners just can't stand bookkeeping or not have the time. I can tell you that virtual bookkeeping can be done pretty easily however it does depend on what system you might have in place and how comfortable you are with delegating in your virtual bookkeeper.

Bookkeeping Houston
The initial consideration:

1. Accounting Program. If you work with QuickBooks, Peachtree or any other accounting software, you should make sure that your version is the same as the virtual bookkeeper. Most accounting programs will help you restore a file from either the identical version or version below (QuickBooks Pro 2009) however you would not be able to restore the file back off to your version (QuickBooks Pro 2008). Most QuickBooks ProAdvisors really have multiple versions of QuickBooks on the computers. I personally have clients still using much older versions and they have opted not to upgrade because the version just works acceptable for them.

2. Another choice is QuickBooks Online. QuickBooks online allows 3 users to access the account (business owner, bookkeeper and accountant). What's nice about QuickBooks Online, is that you simply do not need to purchase software every year and the file is copied on the Intuit server each day. You can also access the file everywhere you have computer access - out of your home office, if you travel frequently - in the hotel, or even look at the file directly from your accountant's office. The QuickBooks Online version differs from the desktop version however if you just use QuickBooks for invoicing and entering payables, this process will work fine for you. If you're thinking about using QuickBooks online, please talk to your QuickBooks ProAdvisor and they can explain different packages available as well as help set up your. The monthly fee is between $9.95 - $34.95 according to what package you end up picking and keep in mind that a majority of QuickBooks ProAdvisors do pass on their discounts on their clients.

3. You may also use remote access sites for example logmein, gotomypc or pcanywhere where the virtual bookkeeper can log in your computer, access your QuickBooks file increase as needed. The only problem with using this method is it will prevent you using your computer as well as the bookkeeper in most cases the entering transactions can take a little bit more time as a result of type of internet connection you might have.

The second consideration: how do you get the information for the bookkeeper. There are a few approaches to handle this and again it will depend on what process works the best for you and the bookkeeper.

1. Generate a file folder for each month of the year - January through December. Through the month, insert your plastic card receipts, vendor bills, and cash outlays into the appropriate file folder. When the bank statement is received, after that you can send the file folder to the bookkeeper via Priority Mail, Express Mail, FedEx or UPS. Once the bookkeeper receives the file, the charge card charges are entered into the accounting program and the statement reconciled along with your business banks. For this method, most clients do pay their vendor bills and send the check stubs on the bookkeeper for reconciling. Once the reconciliations have been completed, the bookkeeper will email the actual monthly financial reports (Profit & Loss, Balance Sheet) and mail back all the receipts, that have now been attached to the appropriate statements (bank or credit card) for filing.

2. For client invoicing, you can email, fax or mail the knowledge needed for preparing the customer invoice. For monthly invoicing, an expert invoice template may be set up with the client filing inside the necessary information and then emailing on the bookkeeper for completion. The virtual bookkeeper can prepare and only mail or email the invoice in your stead. The virtual bookkeeper may also help you in keeping close track of your accounts receivable.

3. For all of us who have online banking, it is very easy to use a virtual bookkeeper. There is a couple of ways this can be achieved - you can download your bank activity weekly, bi-weekly or monthly and email the data to the bookkeeper for entry combined with monthly bank statement if it is available.

For those of you who've had a long, established relationship along with your bookkeeper, you can assign access to them through your bank, and they might then be able to join and download the transactions and bank statements themselves. You can also email your bookkeeper vendor invoices with suggested payment dates as well as the bookkeeper can create the vendor for payment by your online bank account.

Lastly, getting a virtual bookkeeper. You'll be able to certainly contact your accountant and enquire of if they can recommend a bookkeeper to help with your monthly transactions. Many bookkeepers will give you results closely with their client's accountants. All year round I am sending QB files for quarterly or six review for tax planning discussions that my clients have making use of their accountant. Another idea should be to ask other businesses that you know and ask them who assist's them with their bookkeeping.

1. Intuit (makers of QuickBooks) posseses an online database of these Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisors you can find at Intuit's website. You enter your zip code along with a list will show the Certified ProAdvisors in your town. To become a QuickBooks Certified ProAdvisor you have to take a test every year on the most recent edition of QuickBooks. It is an online test and will take up to 16 hours to complete.

2. Another recommendation is to locate someone who is a Certified Bookkeeper. There's two organizations that offer certification programs for bookkeepers plus they are the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB) along with the National Association of Certified Professional Bookkeepers (NACPB). With both organizations you need to obtain CE credits all year round in order to attain your certification. Additionally, NACPB provides the nation's leading bookkeeper licenses. NACPB bookkeeper licenses assure small enterprise and nonprofit organizations that NACPB licensed bookkeepers are trusted and competent bookkeepers.

3. The International Virtual Assistants Association - a non-profit organization with over 1,200 members is another association where you will be able to find well-qualified bookkeepers or certified bookkeepers. They have got an RFP area which you could post your job requirements and members who match those qualifications will reply to your RFP.

These are just a number of the methods that can be used when making use of a virtual bookkeeper. There are also other processes which you can use which I did not cover. It is important that when you are interviewing for the virtual bookkeeper, that you simply both decide on what process work best for both yourself as well as the bookkeeper. Of course, when you begin working together, you may find that emailing your QuickBooks file is just too cumbersome and you may then tend to use QuickBooks Online a treadmill of the remote access programs. It'll certainly be the task in the bookkeeper to find the procedure that will work the best for you personally.

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