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Bookkeeper or accountant? Find the right professional for your small business

There are many things to learn as you start your business; recording sales, producing invoices and paying your staff are among the various duties you will need to carry out. While you may be able to complete all of these tasks yourself, you may eventually need to engage the services of a professional to help keep your books as your business grows.

How can bookkeepers help?
Bookkeepers maintain a business’ day-to-day records and complete operational tasks such as preparing cheques and making remittances. In simple terms, they keep track of the money coming in and the money going out. They can help you identify if your business is making or losing money and make your business run more efficiently by keeping your financial paperwork up-to-date.

What can you do?
You can learn more about bookkeeping with the help of online tools, books, business services and software. Introductory training in accounting can also be helpful if you are unfamiliar with accounting processes; many local business service centres offer such basic training, as do colleges. You may also find that your business can benefit from using an accounting software program to keep track of financial records.

How can accountants help?
Accountants are able to analyse your business in a way that most bookkeepers cannot. They can identify possible deductions or tax credits that are specific to your industry. Based on what they see in your records, accountants can help you make long-term decisions for your business. These can range from the simpler things like whether to lease equipment or buy it to the more complex issue of timing your business’ expansion. An accountant may be aware of regulations that you or your bookkeeper may not, like how long records should be kept.

How we can help!
The Canada Business Network can connect you with specialists on a variety of business topics through our confidential, one-on-one consultations either over the phone or in person. Learn more about the many services offered through the Guest Advisor Program in your region.

Bookkeeping and accounting are important parts of any small business. Whether you complete these tasks yourself or hire a professional, it makes good business sense to keep good records!

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