Online Bookkeeping Jobs Summary
There are many types of an online career that you can pursue and you can give online bookkeeping jobs a try if you have a knack for working with numbers. With this job, you offer bookkeeping services to a client remotely. Using necessary tools and equipment, you will perform tasks such as posting financial transactions, reviewing and updating financial statements and reconciling financial accounts of a client.
Online bookkeeping is like traditional bookkeeping, except that you will work in a virtual arrangement. A client will grant a hired online bookkeeper access to all necessary financial documents and software.
One possible scenario if you work as an online bookkeeper is that you need to install (in your computer) a software or program that the client requires. You will then log in to the client’s network or system to access the financial records you need to process. You and the client must use the same software to ensure proper communication and sending of files.
Tasks And Duties
Almost every industry requires bookkeeping to make sure that everything is in balance and that the business is earning profits. Tasks assigned to an online bookkeeper may vary per company and niche, but the basic duties are similar. These common tasks include entering/managing accounts payable, entering/managing accounts receivable, maintaining general ledger, supervising payroll, managing inventory, monitoring budgets for projects, and preparing accounting report.
Must-Have Skills And Attributes
A mathematical skill is just one of the required skills for anyone who likes to work as an online bookkeeper. There are other skills you need to possess to succeed in this career. In fact, when you browse the internet for online bookkeeping jobs, you could see what exact skills an employer looks for in an applicant.
o Data Entry Skills – part of your job is data entry because you need to enter or input financial data onto a system that the employer requires. Involved with data entry is the knowledge on using a computer and computer programs or software. Another skill that automatically comes with data entry is typing skill. It will be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the commonly used bookkeeping software if you are considering getting a job as an online or virtual bookkeeper.
o Communication Skills – It is a common misconception by several people that communication is not a pressing issue when working online since one will often work alone. However, communication is important in many types of online careers, such as online bookkeeper and virtual assistant. You surely would not need to communicate with the client in person, but you still need to exchange messages with each other such as when you need more documents to do your job.
Remember that as an online bookkeeper, your job is to make sure that financial records are correct and so you need to communicate with your client effectively. You may need to communicate via chat, video call or email.
o Bookkeeping And Accounting Skills – These are not simple math skills. These are more specialized skills that involve numbers and accounting principles. Such skills make many employers specify in job ads they are looking for people who took up courses related to accounting and bookkeeping. When you further read posted job ads online, you will encounter some words that seem uncommon to non-accounting graduates. Yet, these words are very understandable to someone who has an accounting background.
o Organizational Skills – There are different files you need to deal with. If you lack this quality, there is a high possibility that at least one document will get misplaced and you cannot finish your task efficiently.
o Attention To Details – At a glance, it would seem that all numbers are the same. If you are a bookkeeper, you need to have eyes for details. This means you need to be accurate in your work that revolves around numbers. In this kind of job, a small mistake could cause chaos in an entire company.
o Technological Skills – These refer to the ability to use accounting software and programs.
Mentioned earlier on how online bookkeeping works is that the employer will ask you to install and use a computer program, software or app that he/she also uses to. Most times, employers choose a particular online bookkeeping application and will ask you to perform your tasks through these online resources. Therefore, you need to be skilled in learning new software if you are not yet familiar with them. Figure 1, for example, requires the applicant to have experience in using programs or apps like FreshBooks, Quickbooks and Xero.
o Sense Of Responsibility – It takes discipline to finish every task, especially one that involves numbers. Discipline is only part of this attribute. You need to realize that your job as an online bookkeeper is very crucial to the entire company. The company’s financial record, which you need to process and complete, is at stake. If you are not a responsible bookkeeper, you might think it will not matter if you do not put a serious amount of effort into your job and you only submit something half-done as long as it is on time.
o Interest In Learning New Things – This does not refer only to the new software or program for bookkeeping. This also covers your awareness that there are short courses available today that you may take. Things you will learn from these courses will not only help you do your job better but will also give you better future career options.
Education And Training
Most bookkeeping job posts you will find have requirements that the applicants have degrees such as in business, mathematics or accounting. This is understandable since there are principles of bookkeeping and accounting involved. Still, if you search further, it is possible to find a job opening in online bookkeeping for those who only have High School Diploma. These job openings probably are not as complex as the other jobs for accounting graduates.
Besides, there are training resources you may find and use online. When you browse for online jobs and see an opening for an online bookkeeper with no experience and you think you qualify, grab that chance to apply.
As you wait for the employer to respond, search online for related information and resources like this video above.
Age And Work Experience
Like other online jobs, age is not as important as the work experience of an applicant. Anyone with qualification, regardless of age, can apply to a particular job opening as long as there is no specified age in the ad and the person is of legal working age.
Experience has more weight in a job application as an online bookkeeper. In Figure 1, for example, the company is looking for someone with 2 to 3 years of relevant bookkeeping experience.
These are the tools of the trade that will let you perform the job as a virtual bookkeeper.1. Computer Hardware – You are an online worker, so you need a computer. However, do not think any computer will do. You need to research the specifications necessary to perform bookkeeping tasks. One crucial consideration with computer hardware for bookkeeping is a larger screen to help reduce eye strain while working on small spreadsheet cells. Job ads like in Figure 2 contain the required technical requirements of a company.
According to this job ad, the minimum computer specification is a desktop or laptop with i3 or equivalent, 8 GB RAM. These are just the minimum. If you have the means, upgrade to the recommended i5 or equivalent processor, 16 GB RAM SSD.
2. Internet Connection – This is another crucial technical requirement in all virtual and online jobs like online bookkeeping. Figure 2 also shows that the company has technical requirements for the applicant’s internet connection. The minimum is 5 Mbps, while the recommended is 10 Mbps.
3. Home Workstation – This will include your table and chair. It is your choice whichever table or chair to use. Yet, many recommend that you set up an ergonomic workstation. You will spend hours at your desk and on your chair. These ergonomic chairs and desks will help make you feel comfortable so you can accomplish more tasks.4. Software Applications – Software programs that an online bookkeeper needs are not just necessary for bookkeeping duties. You also need apps for communicating with the employer. An example is Skype, which
Bookkeeper Vs Accountant
In many job openings you will find online, there are those containing these two terms in the title. It might cause confusion if you ignore these words in the title. There are positions specifically for Accountants, and such jobs are more complex and specialized. After all, accounting job positions require a bachelor’s degree in accounting plus CPA license and certification.
Bookkeepers are under the accounting umbrella. CPA licenses and certifications are not requirements, but employers often prefer those who have relevant work experience. Bookkeeping tasks are more focused on daily operations of the business, such as tracking expenses and income. A qualified bookkeeper must have keen attention to details and high accuracy, but the accountant should have more responsibilities to fulfill.
The duties of an accountant include setting up the general financial plan and budget of a business, overseeing tax details, analyzing financial information, auditing financial statements, producing more detailed reports and recommending strategies according to tax laws and data.
How To Apply/Join
Applying for a virtual bookkeeping job is like applying for any other online jobs like home transcriber and email marketer. You make use of Google and other search engines. Type in your keyword and let the search engine do its job to direct you to various job websites and portals.
The advantage of using internet resources like search engines is that you could make local searches. When you type the keyword “online bookkeeping job,” it is possible that the search results will include jobs from all over the world.
You could perform a more localized search by keying in “online bookkeeping job + your country or place of residence.” This will help narrow down your search for job ads within your locality.
You may click each link and browse through each job portal to find the job most suitable for you. Follow the instructions written in the job ad or the application procedure of a particular job portal. You might need to first sign up to a job portal before you could browse for jobs. Figure 2 shows that interested applicants need to complete a pre-made form.
While online, you might come across blog posts that discuss such jobs and even contain a list of companies that specifically hire bookkeepers to work from home.
As stated earlier, bookkeeping is an important part of any business. Now that more and more businesses are taking advantage of what the digital world offers, it is likely that you could find a lot of job listings from different industries and niches. Outsourcing bookkeeping to online professionals is beneficial to employers and companies. It is a cost-saving solution for them.
The salary rate for remote bookkeepers varies per job offer and per company. There can be many reasons for this. One is the size of the company that recruits or hires you. Your country of residence or the country where you are working may also influence the salary rate.
Salary is also commensurate to work experience, just like what we could see from Figure 3, where the payment ranges from $480 to $1,000 per month depending on experience. From Figure 1, the successful applicant may earn Php 20,000 to 30,000.
The advantage of working online as a bookkeeper is that you may apply for part-time or freelance positions and take on multiple jobs if you like to earn more.
Your work schedule will depend on what your employer requires. This also includes your free day and work leaves. Some clients offer a flexible work schedule wherein you need only to submit reports on a particular date, regardless of the time you work. Other employers will require that you remain online for a particular duration of time as you perform your tasks. Figure 4 shows us an example of a bookkeeper’s work schedule arranged by the employer.
During the training, you need to put in 20 to 30 hours and since the employer is an American
Benefits / Bonus/ Increase/ Training Provided
Pay rate is not the only thing that the employer sets, but also the benefits and training you could get.
From Figure 5, the successful candidate will receive
Figure 2 shows that if you get hired, you will have paid leaves, referral bonuses, bi-annual bonuses, and performance-based incentives.
I enjoy working with numbers, but this does not mean that I am fit to become an online bookkeeper. After all, bookkeeping still requires knowledge and training to make use of necessary bookkeeping principles. If you have finished accounting, business or math courses, online bookkeeping might be a good career choice if you want to work from home. You may also switch to online bookkeeping if you have been working as an office bookkeeper for some time and have grown tired of the hassles of commuting to work.