Top 15 Bookkeeping Skills to be Best on the Job

By | October 11, 2023
Bookkeeping Skills
To be highly effective as a bookkeeper you need to develop certain skills and qualities.

Top 15 Bookkeeping Skills to be Best on the Job

There are skills that every bookkeeper needs to possess in order to do well in their career. This post will help you discover those qualities and skills you need to develop to improve on your effectiveness on the job and be among the best in your company.

But first, let’s answer the question:

What is Bookkeeping?

Bookkeeping is a process of recording, storing, analyzing, and interpreting the financial transactions of a company.

The primary function of a bookkeeper is to create financial statements to enable the accountant to easily and timely carry out tax management and legal processes.

Now, back to the skills and qualities that improve a bookkeeper’s job performance

15 Skills Every Bookkeeper Needs to Succeed in Their Career

1. Great Communication Skills

Bookkeepers are required to work in a team and communicate with them. They should be good at listening and able to ask questions when necessary. They need to also have excellent written skills and not just strong verbal communication skills.

Being able to communicate effectively with everyone will make the job of a bookkeeper easier. They need to discuss the finances of the company with the owner or manager of the business, and manage credit control for the business.

Good bookkeepers apply communication skills to politely contact customers who owe their company with a view of collecting debts on a timely basis.

Bookkeepers should be able to communicate errors and resolve issues through proper communications when dealing with numbers.

2. Organizational Skills

Because bookkeepers handle a lot of unrefined data in their work, they need the skills of organizing their work and data.

They should be able to interpret data, prepare reports, and store files which will increase the efficacy of their work and the profitability of the company they work for.

Having organizational skills help bookkeepers to research helpful financial tactics, analyze accounts more thoroughly, and point out areas of growth and opportunity.

They need to prioritize the vital tasks and identify those of them that need to be done first. They should consider using checklists to help complete tasks.

Organizational skills assist in the area of managing time and workload in a way that bookkeepers become responsive to all the needs of their clients and be able to retrieve information and accounts very quickly when required.

3. Detail Oriented

Bookkeeping requires focusing and paying attention to little things, as well as to big ones. They need the ability to perform their duties without any supervision and have keen eyes for correcting errors as the owner of business doesn’t have the time to do that.

Bookkeepers must be detail-oriented as they will be dealing with numbers that determine important financial decisions.

They should be able to track every customer that made a purchase: who the customer is, the terms of the sale, and how to properly record and document the sale.

4. Accuracy

As a bookkeeper, in order not to cause your company serious damage, you need to be accurate in your job. A single error of one digit can cause great problems. That’s just why you must be able to figure out problems quickly and make little or no error.

Being accurate will help you to avoid errors whereby an amount is wrongly allocated to an account on your books, or errors in balancing your final statement. You need to be accurate even if you work fast, to ensure you perform your duties well.

5. Computer Skills

Bookkeeping and accounting used to be done manually in the past. But today, they have been modernized and computerized instead of the old way of writing down amounts and figures by hand.

Bookkeepers must be computer literate in order to have the knowledge of some bookkeeping and accounting software, such as Quickbooks, Netsuite, Xero, Quicken, TurboCash, Pastel, and more. This makes their work much easier and more convenient.

6. Honesty and Trustworthiness

Bookkeepers should be trusted to handle some important and confidential information like payroll records and bank statements.

The business owner trusts his/her bookkeeper and will not hide confidential financial information from him/her. Therefore, the bookkeeper should not abuse the trust they have in him/her.

Bookkeepers must have reputation for honesty and should not promise what they cannot deliver to avoid causing the business enterprise to pay unnecessary penalties.

If any problem is identified, the bookkeeper should be able to carry the message over to the management so as to protect the assets and liabilities of the enterprise.

7. Critical Thinking and Problem-solving

Bookkeepers should learn to confidently tackle even the trickiest issues because they are looked upon to solve complicated problems.

The ability to identify and analyze problems is a must-have for bookkeepers. If they can identify and analyze a problem, then they can solve the problem.

Bookkeepers need critical thinking and problem-solving skills to be able to spot different patterns, trends, and come up with a logical strategy.

These skills will help them to develop a long-term financial plan for their clients, and to explore and find creative and long-lasting solutions.

8. Leadership

Some of the things you need to know as a bookkeeper are how to mentor, teach, and make yourself approachable to everyone especially those who work under your supervision and the people you are responsible for.

Make yourself a role model and always stay in charge while still maintaining a peaceful atmosphere working with the team. Be confident and patient, and have the ability to delegate.

In the bookkeeping profession, leadership skills also include tactical thinking and long-term planning.

To be best as a bookkeeper, think about taking management courses and devoting the time to building yourself up.

9. Reliability

Reliability is what makes you to be available when needed and offer help when most needed, especially during emergency situations.

You can ask a potential bookkeeper how they would handle a financial situation specific to your business. This will help you to provide better quality services to the company you work for.

When you are reliable, you can easily win the heart of your manager or supervisor; also, you need to try as much as possible to provide honest opinions on the effect your services have on the company, and also on confidentiality with which you render your services.

10. Time Management

The effectiveness of managing your workload becomes visible when you know how to manage your time properly.

The time management skill is important for bookkeepers to have because it helps you to know when a particular duty is to be performed at a certain time. You can then conveniently manage competing priorities and complete tasks on time.

You will be able to advance quickly in your career when you can develop the ability to meet deadlines and prioritize your program.

Your boss, coworkers, and clients will become impressed and you will maintain a healthy work balance and sustain productive day-to-day activities.

11. Knowledge of Bookkeeping

You need to have full knowledge of bookkeeping tasks from assets to equity and expenses in order to keep up safe financial records.

As a well-qualified bookkeeper, you need to be knowledgeable in daily bookkeeping practices and understand how those practices apply to your particular industry.

Knowledge of bookkeeping will give you the ability to track your company’s financial growth, compare it to that of your competitors and report essential trends or diversities.

12. Experience

Experience will enable you to handle whatever issues that may turn up anytime within your business environment. You will work significantly faster and smarter when you are experienced; and you will become important to others.

You may possess bookkeeping certifications and training, but experience also helps to keep you going.

How have you handled practical bookkeeping activities and how often have you made your boss happy? All these are what you can acquire through proper learning and performing.

13. Persuasion

Bookkeepers need to work in agreement with others, gain trust and build relationships.

The ability to persuade their clients throughout their relationships with them is needed.

Bookkeepers also need to persuade team members to work together to achieve a specific goal.

14. Teamwork and Interpersonal Skills

As a bookkeeper, you should learn to make contributions to groups and collaborate with others to achieve a common goal. Employers value this skill set a great deal.

You must be ready to interact with others in a good and positive manner in any position you hold.

15. Stability

Stability is one of the skills you should put into consideration when thinking of embarking on bookkeeping career.

Changing your job every year can be a disadvantage as employers are on the look-out for excellent bookkeepers who have done well in a number of years.

You can be stable on your job when you stick tight to one particular job for quite a number of years. It will give you enough time to learn and follow bookkeeping from start to the end. Hopping for another job may cause you to start again with a strange topic altogether.

Bookkeeping Skills for Resume

If you are writing a resume for a bookkeeping position, the skills and qualities above can be used in making the core competence or skills section of the resume.


You need the bookkeeping skills and qualities expressed in this post to be able to give best performances on the job and advance quickly in your career.