Bookkeeping Assistant Job Description and Career Highlight

Bookkeeping Assistant
Bookkeeping assistants also produce financial reports such as balance sheet, profit, and loss statement.

This post provides complete information on the bookkeeping assistant job description and career, including the key duties, tasks, and responsibilities they commonly perform.

It also provides ideas on how to become a bookkeeping assistant and the various career opportunities you can explore with a bookkeeping background.

The estimated salary for the bookkeeping assistant role is also provided in this post.   

Please, keep reading:

What Does a Bookkeeping Assistant Do?

The bookkeeping assistant job description entails keeping the financial accounts of companies and ensuring that these are accurate.

It also involves preparing tax returns for companies.

A bookkeeping assistant produces balance sheet, profit, and loss statement and other reports as required by the business they work in.

They communicate adeptly and regularly with employees of the organization in carrying out their duties efficiently and effectively.

Bookkeeping assistants may prepare wage slips, pension schemes, deductions to government agencies like the Inland Revenue or tax authorities and other such documentation, which is necessary for day-to-day running of a business or organization.

The bookkeeping assistant also undertakes the payroll administration.

They also have to verify and advise on employee’s tax affairs in accordance with the law and regulations, as well as procedure of the organization.

The bookkeeping assistant may have to deal with customers’ queries, process credit payments, and deposit checks, and maintain cash flow in organizations.

It is the duty of the bookkeeping assistant to carry out internal audits, as well as international standards audit.

They are to ensure that all records are maintained according to set standards of the organization for auditing purposes.

Another duty of the bookkeeping assistants is the handling of accounts receivables and payables.

Their role includes preparing returns, keeping records up-to-date, and reconciling with bank statements.

The bookkeeping assistant needs to develop standard business forms and templates, such as invoices, purchase orders, and receipts, and other reports that may be required by the organization.

More Bookkeeping Assistant Duties and Responsibilities

Additionally, duties of the bookkeeping assistant include preparing budgets for the company in order to improve profitability.

They sometimes do reconciliation work for the business in order to avoid disputes with suppliers or customers over goods or services received or paid for by these parties.

A bookkeeping assistant is required to be familiar with the terms of business, such as Terms and Conditions and other legal documents.

They are also required to draft contracts.

Furthermore, the job requires that they have good communication skills with both customers as well as internal staff of the organization/company.

Bookkeeping assistants must be creative in approaching new clients as well as utilizing existing client base for future potential business prospects.

They are expected to increase efficiency in their operations by implementing new technology for better bookkeeping systems into their work processes.

The bookkeeping assistant must also be able organize their work in such a way that it can be easily understood by others, including accounting professionals.

Bookkeeping Assistant Job Description Sample/Example/Template

The bookkeeping assistant job description involves the following duties, tasks, and responsibilities:

  • Organize and maintain financial records
  • Enter transactions into accounting and financial systems
  • Assist with periodic financial report preparation
  • Assist with tax preparation and filings (in some cases)
  • Filing of correspondence
  • Answer employee questions about financial matters
  • Produce records in response to requests from auditors, attorneys, and management
  • Provide administrative support to accounting department
  • Maintain inventory of supplies and materials
  • Prepare cash receipts journal entries
  • Produce expense reimbursement forms and purchase orders
  • Prepare bank reconciliations, general ledgers, balance sheets for internal financial reports
  • Work closely with management in the development of financial budgets for the company (on occasion)
  • Provide support for payroll through preparation of weekly and monthly payroll reports, as well as biweekly check runs and tax filings (in some cases)
  • Give support for sales tax filings (in some cases).

Bookkeeping Assistant Job Description for Resume

If you are making a new resume and have worked previously or are currently working as a bookkeeping assistant, you can show such experience in your resume by applying the sample bookkeeping assistant job description above.

You can use the above sample job description in emphasizing the duties and responsibilities you have successfully performed working as a bookkeeping assistant in the professional experience section of your resume.

This can enhance your chances of being hired as you are able to show that you have been effective in performing the duties and responsibilities of a bookkeeping assistant.

Bookkeeping Assistant Job Requirements: Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities for Career Success

Here are major requirements that you may be expected to meet to be hired for the bookkeeping assistant role:

  • Must have at least 1-2 years of experience working in accounting, preferably in a corporate environment
  • Possess minimum of 1 year of post-secondary education, ideally specializing in bookkeeping
  • Knowledgeable and proficient with QuickBooks Pro (preferred) or accounting software package
  • Should be able to keep accurate information for up to 65 employees
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office and other Internet-based software programs (i.e. Gmail)
  • Should have excellent skills in written and verbal communication skills
  • Must have the ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines, as well as the ability to work independently and as part of a team when applicable
  • Should be able to work with a variety of people, such as superiors, employees, and clients
  • Must have the ability to prioritize multiple tasks and must be able to handle multiple tasks simultaneously
  • Possess excellent problem-solving skills, including working well under pressure in the face of unknown situations
  • Should be flexible as well as able to work at night/weekends and on short notice in order to meet deadlines as needed
  • Possess excellent organizational skills due to the need of maintaining employee files, financial data, electronic data files and other records pertaining to employees’ paystubs/wages/benefits/points/gifts, etc.

Bookkeeping Assistant Salary

According to salary.com, the average bookkeeper/accounting assistant pay in the United States is $45,600 as of April 26, 2022, with a normal range of $40,000 to $51,200.

The highest paying cities are Brooklyn, NY, $49,549; Denver, CO, $47,841; New York, NY, $46,920; Philadelphia, PA, $46,902; and Austin, TX, $44,432 per year.

There are currently over 764,492 bookkeeping assistants working in the United States.

Women make up 84.1% of all bookkeeping assistants, while men make up 15.9%.

An employed bookkeeping assistant is 50 years old on average.

White (72.1%) is the most common ethnicity among bookkeeping assistants, followed by Hispanic or Latino (12.6%), Black or African American (6.9%), and Asian (6.3%).

Women were projected to earn 97% of what men will earn in 2021.

Bookkeeping Assistant Career Opportunities

There are various career opportunities for people with bookkeeping assistant experience, including:

  • Staff Accountant

A staff accountant is a junior accounting position.

An entry-level staff accountant is responsible for helping with the financial records of a company or organization.

This account works under a controller, chief accounting officer, or another senior accountant.

  • Controller

A controller is an accountant who oversees the financial activities of a company or organization.

They establish policies and procedures to track business transactions and make sure that bills are paid on time, payroll taxes are filed accurately, and budgets are met.

Controllers coordinate financial details for annual statements such as profit-and-loss statements and balance sheets.

  • Accounting Manager

The accounting manager is a senior accountant who is responsible for the company’s overall financial reporting.

This position may be responsible for accounting and auditing, government relations, and banking relationships.

  • Certified public accountants (CPAs)

CPAs are often referred to as CPAs or accountants.

To become a CPA, you must complete a four-year college program in an accredited school that focuses on “accounting and taxation.

Candidates must pass the difficult CPA exam.

The CPA exam is an eight-hour test of 200 questions, designed to test if the candidate can apply a wide range of accounting and financial principles to real-life situations.

  • Chief financial officer (CFO)

A CFO directs the financial activities of a company or organization.

The CFO is responsible for the accounting, budgeting/financial reporting, banking, and financial control functions of an organization.

More Bookkeeping Assistant Career Opportunities

  • Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

The CEO is the highest-ranking executive in a company or organization.

They determine the long-range plans for the business and its future direction.

CEOs are involved with all aspects of the business and monitor the day-to-day activities of management.

They directly supervise all managers and reviews their performance.

  • Chief Information Officer (CIO)

The CIO is responsible for implementing technology that supports a company’s operations.

This includes computing, telecommunications, and telecommunications networks.

The CIO must follow prescribed policies and procedures and coordinates the activities of various departments.

They are responsible for all technical aspects of network, software application, and computer systems management in determining the effective operation of a network.

The CIO also reviews trends related to information systems in business, government, and industry.

They may be responsible for developing an organization’s control systems and procedures.

  • Internal Auditor

The internal auditor is an independent professional who is responsible for a company’s financial records.

They ensure the accuracy of financial transactions and identify any irregularities.

Internal auditors provide information about the company’s financial situation to upper management, members of the board of directors, and investors.

Additional Career Opportunities for Bookkeeping Assistants

  • Tax Auditor

A tax auditor is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) working in the field of taxation.

They examine the records of individuals, corporations, and businesses to determine their tax liability.

Tax auditors research complex financial records to establish appropriate taxes and then make recommendations to the IRS on audit adjustments or refund requests for current or past tax periods.

bookkeeping assistant career
Working as a bookkeeping assistant can help get into other career opportunities like staff accountant, controller, and accounting manager.
  • Tax Manager

The tax manager is responsible for overseeing all aspects of a company’s or organization’s tax compliance.

They are involved with all phases of tax preparation, accounting, recordkeeping and advice.

Tax managers coordinate tax filing and consult with other companies that have similar operations to determine the most efficient means of collecting taxes.

Challenges faced by Bookkeeping Assistant on the Job

Bookkeeping assistants face a number of challenges on the job, some of these include:

  • Management is uninterested in investing in training

A common challenge faced by bookkeeping assistant is that no investment is made in staff training and development.

Bookkeeping assistants need to be updated regularly on the industry they work in.

Without the proper training, they will not be able to retain employment and may need to move to a different company.

  • Limited opportunity for career growth

Another challenge faced by bookkeeping assistants is that they will not be able to grow in the company.

It is very common that employers want to protect the employment of their staff and do not want them to gain more responsibilities without a promotion.

This may lead them to work with lesser quantities because they do not want to lose their position of power in the company.

  • Lack of appreciation from superiors in the workplace

Another challenge faced by bookkeeping assistants is when superiors in the company are unappreciative for accomplishments.

It is very common that superiors in the company do not acknowledge the work done by staff members.

This can have a negative impact on employees and they may be demotivated to continue working very hard.

How to Become a Bookkeeping Assistant

Here are steps to take if you are interested in becoming an assistant bookkeeper:

  1. Complete a high school diploma program or its equivalent.

A high school diploma or equivalent is the minimum educational requirement for the position of a bookkeeping assistant.

Some employers may prefer candidates who have taken college courses in bookkeeping, accounting, or a related field.

If you want to be a certified public accountant (CPA), you must first complete an undergraduate degree program, followed by additional coursework and exams to become licensed.

2. Think about enrolling in a bookkeeping or accounting certificate program.

While a certificate program is not required to become an assistant bookkeeper, it can provide you with the necessary skills and knowledge.

Bookkeeping and accounting certificate programs can teach you more about financial statements, payroll, taxes, and other aspects of business administration.

An online certificate program may be completed in as little as six months.

3. Gain hands-on experience with bookkeeping software.

Working with bookkeeping software is a necessary part of becoming an assistant bookkeeper.

Many businesses manage their finances using software, such as Microsoft Office, QuickBooks, and Peachtree.

Before applying for positions as an assistant bookkeeper, job candidates should have experience using these programs.

4. Get a job.

Once you have the necessary education and experience, find an entry-level job as an assistant bookkeeper.

Start by applying to businesses in your local area. If that doesn’t work, explore options online or contact professional associations.

Major Benefits of a Bookkeeping Assistant Career

Benefits of a Bookkeeping assistant career include the following:

  • Not physically demanding career

As a bookkeeping assistant, you will work in an office setting. This is a less physically demanding occupation than others in the field of business administration.

  • Predictable work schedule

Unless a bookkeeping assistant has additional responsibilities outside of their primary job duties, their work schedule is usually very predictable.

Assistant bookkeepers are usually expected to be in the office for eight hours every day.

If you want to spend more time with your family or have flexibility in scheduling when you work, this may be an ideal career choice for you.

  • Gain valuable experience

A bookkeeping assistant can learn a lot about bookkeeping and accounting in their first few years of employment.

Because you will be working alongside more experienced staff, you can observe how they handle common tasks and gain valuable knowledge.

You may also be able to work with different types of businesses, which can help you learn accounting practices used by various types of organizations.

  • Salary increase overtime

As you gain more experience and have more responsibilities, your salary will increase accordingly.

After working as a bookkeeping assistant for five or ten years, your salary will likely be higher than average.

You may also receive bonuses and performance-based pay at some companies.

More Benefits of a Bookkeeping Assistant Career

  • Long-term career opportunities

Working as a bookkeeping assistant offers long-term career opportunities.

Some assistant bookkeepers develop their skills over time and eventually become certified public accountants.

Another option is to move into a supervisory or management position within the company.

  • Company benefits

Many companies offer benefits to their employees, these may include:

  1. Health insurance
  2. Dental insurance
  3. Vision insurance
  4. Life insurance
  5. Flexible spending accounts
  6. Discounts on products and services offered by the company and its partners
  7. Promotion opportunities:

More experienced bookkeeping assistants are often promoted to more responsible positions and are able to manage their budgets, accounts payable, and other accounting responsibilities.

Being a bookkeeping assistant is a great opportunity for those who want to advance within their companies.

Conclusion

The bookkeeping assistant is an important role in any organization.

This position requires the bookkeeping assistant to perform many vital tasks, such as entering all financial data, keeping records of bank deposits and withdrawals, and maintaining inventory of supplies and material in a shop, office or business.

With some hard work and dedication, bookkeeping assistants can have a career they are happy with.