There are many bookkeeping tasks to complete as either a bookkeeper or small business owner. Complete bookkeeping duties on either a daily, monthly, quarterly or annual basis depending on what they are.
Getting into the routine of completing bookkeeping on a regular basis can save the time and heartache of having to rush it when annual accounts are due or management request a report. It is also important to keep on top of all sales and purchase invoices, ensuring an earlier settlement.
It is worth keeping either a dairy or online calendar of all the deadlines that you need to meet. It may include dates for pay run, end of year, scheduling payments, chasing customers, Vat return dates, paying taxes and when reports are required by management.
If you are looking for a career in bookkeeping, this list of duties will give you an idea of the work that you might get involved in either on your own or part of a team.
Bookkeeping Tasks Small Business
Daily, Weekly or Monthly Bookkeeping Duties
Dealing with Post and Emails. Each day it is worth checking post and emails, this will ensure that you keep on top of invoices and queries. If you handle all mail, you will need to distribute some to other employees.
Check your bank account:. It is important to know how much cash as a business owner or bookkeeper is in the bank account. It allows budgeting to know when payments can be made and check if customers have paid their invoices.
Reconcile Bank Account. Bank reconciliation ensures that all transactions are posted correctly to the accounts. Reconciliation of the bank account, savings and credit card should be completed on a regular basis.
Prepare and Send Sales Invoices. Send sales invoices to the customer at the end of a job, or on an agreed date, this may be a deposit or monthly invoice. The quicker the invoices are sent to the customer the quicker you should get paid.
Record Customer Receipts. When a customer pays a sales invoices, record the payment against the sales invoice in the accounting records. It will ensure that you do not chase a customer for an invoice which is already paid.
Banking Cash. Customers pay by cash; it will need banking on a regular basis, ensuring that not too much cash is on the premises at any time.
Credit Control. One of the most important jobs is credit control. If you do not get paid by a customer on time, it can cause cash flow problems. Credit control procedures will need to be put in place and check each day if invoices need chasing for payment. If customers do not pay on time, debt collection letters or even court action may be needed.
Process Supplier Invoices. When you receive a supplier invoice record it onto your accounting system and check that the details are correct. If you require authorisation from management, this is the time to obtain it. Any queries on a supplier invoice can be submitted.
Pay suppliers. Paying suppliers on time is important, as you do not want to upset a supplier and get your credit cancelled. It is easier to have payment runs either on a weekly or monthly basis. Payments to suppliers may be either by direct debit, standing order, BACS, bank transfer or cheque.
Filing of Paperwork. Whether you file your transactions with paper or on the computer, your filing should be kept up to date. Some accounting packages allow you to upload images of receipts to their software, which can save keeping hard copies. Scanning of documents, to update the computer system or email to customers or suppliers. Filing paperwork is normally by sales or purchases, then by customer or supplier name and then date.
Petty Cash. If the business purchases sundry items using cash a petty cash system will need to be in place. A record of all transactions will be kept and updated to the accounting software. From the bank withdraw cash when needed to top up.
Payroll. Employees details require updating and payroll run, which may be either on a weekly fortnight or monthly basis. Payslips are distributed to the employees
Review Cash Flow. Cash flow forecasting may be completed on either short term or long term. If a business has a tight cash flow, they may need to review the position on a daily basis. Other businesses may require long term forecasting for either a year or more. This allows them to see if the business will be profitable and perhaps expand in the future.
Produce Monthly Reports. There are two main monthly reports the profit and loss and balance sheet. The profit and loss will show the sales, overheads and expenses for the month. The balance sheet shows a snapshot of the business finances including assets and liabilities.
Pay Taxes on Time. There are several different taxes and depending on the company formation will depend on the taxes that need to be paid. A limited company in the UK may pay Corporation Tax, VAT and PAYE. A self-employed business will pay self-assessment tax (personal tax rather than business).
Perform stock take. A stocktake can be done at any time but required at year-end. It ensures that the stock held is equal to the stock in the accounts if there is a difference adjustment by the journal can be made. Stock can also change in value.
Journal Entries. Any adjustments to the accounts will need to be entered using journals. There can be many reasons for journals including, accruals, prepayments, underpayments, bad debt and general adjustments.
Excel Spreadsheets. To help with producing reports at times it is necessary to enter details into an Excel spreadsheet. It allows for calculations and sorting of data and can make figures easier to read.
Annual Bookkeeping Tasks
Produce Annual Accounts. It doesn’t matter if you are a limited company or self-employed you will need a set of accounts at year-end. A limited company will need them submitted to companies house and self-employed to HMRC. The reports should include profit and loss, balance sheet and perhaps a trial balance.
Liaise with Accountant. As part of bookkeeping duties there will be times during the year that questions may arise that you need to ask the accountant. If an accountant is required to produce annual accounts, you will need to prepare them and pass all the reports and paperwork to them. If you are using cloud accounting software, it is possible to invite them as a user or accountant.
Bookkeeper duties can vary from job to job. In one business you may be required to do everything and in others just a small section. You need to be prepared to deal with anything and any queries that may arise.
The most important thing in bookkeeping tasks is to get organised and keep on top of the work.
If you want to know more about bookkeeping tasks read our bookkeeping basics section.