What is Bookkeeping in the Old Days?
Before the introduction of computers and accounting software, bookkeepers once kept a practice of manually recording, on a day-to-day basis, the financial transactions the business had partaken on journals. The entries which were written on the journals were the original entries and were arranged in date order. They are then transferred to general ledgers in their designated accounts, whereby the balance therein were calculated to be used in the company’s financial statements.
Everything that a traditional bookkeeper does was carefully handwritten to achieve accuracy of accounts. Doing these things over and over again has also some downsides as bookkeepers tend to commit errors in doing such repeatedly. The disadvantage became the motivation of some visionaries who found opportunity from the problem itself. They introduced the invention of accounting software that will automate everything, including the duties of a typical bookkeeper.
What is bookkeeping then in today’s technologically-advanced society?
Bookkeeping in today’s modernity, is done through the use of computer software like Xero Accounting or QuickBooks. Even though the process has become fast and easier compared to the handwriting times of bookkeeping, practitioners in the field still needs to have a proper understanding and knowledge about bookkeeping and its conventions.
Although many bookkeeping tasks are eliminated, modern bookkeepers should have a basic knowledge of debits and credits and everything about financial accounting, which comprises of balance sheet and income statement. Today, the practice goes beyond just entering data and reconciling bank transactions. Bookkeeping is also about addressing to the needs of the customers and getting the processes right for their business.
The Common Bookkeeping Duties
What are the expected duties that a bookkeeper must complete for his clients then? There are many fully equipped and qualified bookkeepers out there who can tell you a long list of things that they do even though the process has become automated. But here are some of the basic tasks your bookkeeper must meet:
• Recording Transactions Daily
• Billing for goods sold or services provided
• Verifying invoices
• Processing payroll
• Reconciling Bank Transactions
• Preparing Financial Reports for Clients and Accountants
• Tracking Accounts Receivable
Perhaps, the emergence of accounting software didn’t really change some of a bookkeeper’s activities. Yes it may have made things faster, more accurate, and easier, but the core bookkeeping concepts are still alive. These include getting bookkeepers’ to think critically about the information in their hands; something a machine can’t just do yet.