- Requires good accounting, maths, and organisational skills
- With experience and training, option to become an accounting technician and take on more complex work
- Option to be a self-employed bookkeeper, and work part-time or flexible hours
As a bookkeeper (sometimes known as an accounts clerk) one can expect to work in close proximity with a business or company in order to keep finances tight and under control. You should have, or be expected to develop, strong skills in MS Excel and other accounting software, in order to track and record the financial transactions and records of a company. Part of the bookkeeping process also includes calculating, recording, and balancing financial reports, including payroll.
- Dealing with sales invoices, income, receipts and payments
- Preparing statements showing income and payments
- Completing VAT returns
- Checking that accounts are accurate
- Preparing wages and managing claims for expenses
- Helping to prepare annual accounts using computerised accounting systems
- Giving administrative support to accountants
- Handling commercially sensitive and valuable information
You'll usually work in an office, although it may be an option to work from home for some of the time.
To become a bookkeeper you need good maths knowledge, administration skills and to be thorough and pay attention to detail.
You could do an accounts and finance assistant intermediate apprenticeship.
There are no set requirements to become a bookkeeper however, you could take a recognised accounts or bookkeeping qualification while looking for work. They include, Level 2 Certificate in Bookkeeping, Level 2 Certificate in Accounting and Level 2 Certificate in Manual and Computerised Bookkeeping. These are widely available.
You could also start as an admin assistant with a company, for example on a part-time or temporary contract in an accounts department. You could then take a relevant qualification to become a bookkeeper.
If you want to apply for jobs directly, some employers may ask for up to 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including Maths and English. An A level in business studies, maths, economics or equivalent qualifications could also be useful.
With experience and training, you could become an accounting technician and take on more complex work. You could also become self-employed and set up your own business. You may also decide to take a degree and qualify as an accountant.