Bookkeeping services are tailored to the needs of your business and budget. This usually involves helping each client identify what they need and which duties they will do and which duties they need us to provide. Typically the business owner, or their assistant, will deal with billing their customers and paying checks to the vendors. Whether you use a computerized system or manual books, we can help set up accounting systems and provide various levels of bookkeeping services.

We can be involved monthly, quarterly, or just at year end. We can maintain the bookkeeping system on our computers or help you set up accounting software on your computers. We have years of experience with supporting QuickBooks software.  We can provide bookkeeping services that are flexible and tailored to the needs of each client. We also offer phone support for any bookkeeping questions during the entire year.  See information below for more details.

What is Bookkeeping

Bookkeeping is the process of recording various transactions in a meaningful, consistent way so as to summarize the activity of an enterprise or activity.  This can be simple or complicated depending on the activity being recorded.  Bookkeeping systems can be manual or computerized, and there are advantages and disadvantages to both.  A properly implemented bookkeeping system serves several purposes, such as creating management reports, providing financial information for third parties, and providing information for preparing payroll, sales, and income tax returns.   If set up and implemented correctly, the database maintained by the bookkeeping system should accomplish all these purposes without redundancy.

It may be helpful to learn the typical structure of a bookkeeping system in order to understand how they work and how they apply to your particular business.  The bookkeeping process starts by identifying a list of the accounts, or categories, you will use to sort all the activity of your business.  Each transaction is assigned an account and entered into a journal which is the lowest level of a bookkeeping database.  The transactions in each journal are summarized and the totals are posted to the next level in the database which is called a general ledger, where activity accumulates by account.  This process can happen daily, weekly, or monthly, depending on the number of transactions and how often you need reports.

The following chart describes each of the five separate journals that make up a simple bookkeeping system.  Depending on the complexity of the business, not all journals are necessary.

• Sales or Accounts Receivable journal = record sales/collections on account
• Purchases or Accounts Payable journal  = record purchases/payments to vendors
• Payroll journal  = record employee paychecks and payroll taxes
• Cash Disbursements journal  = record checks written, deposits, and bank balance
• General journal  = record activity not entered in other journals

What To Consider

There are many considerations affecting which type of bookkeeping system to choose.  In general, you must decide if it will be manual or on a computer.  Today, computerized systems are relatively inexpensive and eliminate the time involved in summarizing activity while offering robust reporting, online banking, payroll processing, integration to other databases, etc.

The simplest system may consist of only a manual check book register where deposits and disbursements are recorded.  This basic system may accurately reflect all transactions and keep track of your cash balance, it but does not summarize the activity or offer any reporting.  Such a manual system requires a lot of work at year end to summarize the income and expenses by account in order to prepare financial reports or annual income tax returns.

Computerized systems offer much flexibility in that you can choose to use only those modules you need at first.  They usually accommodate expanding the system as your business grows.  The type of business you have usually dictates what software features you should consider.

• Retail sales, in a store or online         = point of sale, inventory tracking, payroll, etc.
• Service sales, such as consulting     = accounts receivable, payroll, etc.
• Manufacturing and distribution           = receivables, payables, inventory, payroll, etc.
• Construction or job costs                   = receivables, payables, inventory, payroll, etc.
• Combination of products & services  = receivables, payables, inventory, payroll, etc.

Where To Start

Whether you have already started a business or are in the planning stages, it helps to gain an understanding of the reporting requirements for your business.  You should consult with an attorney, a CPA, and your banker to learn about the reporting requirements for your specific business activity.  These are some forms of the information reporting you should consider.

• Sales taxes to state(s) and local municipalities
• Reporting to the investors and bankers
• Paying and reporting payroll taxes
• Periodic management reports
• Federal and state income tax reporting
• Reporting accounts payable & cash flow
• Reporting for employee benefit plans
• Reporting accounts receivable collections                                                                       

Identify the activities that relate to your specific business and seek professional advice on how they affect your reporting requirements and the bookkeeping systems you will need.  Each situation is different and the each type of business may have different reporting requirements.

Bookkeeping Software

There are many software products on the market today, we can help you choose one that fits your situation.  We specialize in supporting QuickBooks software, but can assist with setting up almost any system.  The firm of Brad Borncamp, CPA, LLC offers more than tax and accounting services.  We can also assist you with choosing and implementing an appropriate bookkeeping system.

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