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The Cost to Hire a Bookkeeper (You’ll Pay the Price if You Don’t)

When it comes to dealing with accounting, many business owners ask themselves the wrong question. They ask, “What’s the cost to hire a bookkeeper? Can I afford it?”

But that’s not the most helpful way to look at the situation. Indeed, a better question is, “At what point will a bookkeeper become a necessity?”


Can you really afford not to hire a bookkeper?

Indeed, for a very small business with very simple finances, hiring a bookkeeper may be an unnecessary expense. But when your business starts to grow, the financial complexity (and the number of tax rules you must comply with) can quickly become overwhelming. 

In this situation, the cost to hire a bookkeeper is not an expense, but an investment that will quickly pay dividends.

We’ll tell you what bookkeepers can do for your business(es), what types can be useful to hire, and of course – what it costs to hire a bookkeper, and what signs to look out for when hiring them.   

Cost to Hire a Bookkeeper

What a Bookkeeper Does For a Business

Mistakes in choosing a bookkeeper are very costly to a business. Small companies often cannot afford to keep such an employee on staff.

But let’s first understand what a bookkeeper actually does, and what tasks they can perform for your business.

Here is a brief overview of what they can help you with:

Handling Your Taxes

This is probably the main task that business owners turn to a bookkeeper for. 

Even if you can handle the day-to-day bookkeeping, figuring out your tax obligations can be a nightmare.

If you hire a bookkeeper, you can simply list your records and have them do all the calculations. And at the end of the year, even if your bookkeeper doesn’t actually file the tax returns themselves, at least it’s in good shape for you to then pass off to your accountant or accounting firm.

A good bookkeeper will at least have some knowledge of all the relevant laws and regulations, so you can be sure you won’t miss anything.

A bookkeeper can also help you with important tax issues throughout the year. 

For example:

  • Inform you of the tax implications of various business decisions 
  • Help you with your tax planning
  • Make sure you follow the appropriate rules for sales tax in each transaction

Budgeting And Planning

However, a bookkeeper can help you with much more than just taxes. They can assist you with some of the basic planning tasks required for your business.

It’s no secret that a key component of effective planning is creating a detailed financial plan. This includes making realistic projections of what your income, cash flow, and balance sheet will look like over the next few years.

But this process can be quite complicated. 

So if you don’t like spreadsheets and calculations, a bookkeeper can probably do it faster and more efficiently. Plus, it’s always best the business owner or founder focuses on the tasks that they like — and many most of them didn’t get into entrepreneurship because they loved accounting…

The cost to hire a bookkeeper can easily offset itself with the time that is given back to whoever was the poor person in charge of it before (who hated it).

Preparing Financial Statements

Have you ever heard of consolidated financial statements? 

These are the income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement that companies produce at the end of each year to summarize their operations. 

Initially, a very small business may not need to produce these reports at first. But once you start to grow, it is useful to have them or the overall picture of the business they provide. A bookkeeper can help you make these statements or properly set up your systems for day-to-day bookkeeping.

Provide Business Advice

A bookkeeper can also give you more general business advice. 

If you’re thinking of entering a new market or buying another company, they can help you think through the financial implications of the investment and decide if it’s right for your business.

A few hours spent with a bookkeeper can pay off, helping you avoid costly mistakes or identify exciting opportunities.

Cost to Hire a Bookkeeper

Basic Bookkeeping vs Full-Service Bookkeeping

Many small businesses in their initial stages of operation are primarily concerned with regulatory compliance – paying bills, getting paid, recording transactions, ensuring payroll accuracy, and complying with state and federal regulations. 

At some point, your business will cross a certain point and you will begin to place more importance on the need for timely and accurate financial reporting and analytics. That’s when you’ll need more advanced bookkeeping, accrual accounting, and management or managerial accounting. 

The cost to hire a bookkeeper (we’ll give the exact numbers later), is going to vary a lot depending on what stage of growth your business is currently in.

So you must first decide if you just need compliance – basic bookkeeping – or if you’re ready to move on to full-fledged accounting services that can help you increase profits, improve cash flow, and drive growth. 

They require very different levels of effort and expertise, and as you can imagine, the cost of full bookkeeping services is much higher. However, most companies that have made the transition see the benefits and quickly experience a return on investment.

How You Can Benefit From Hiring a Bookkeeper

Beyond the simple financial equation that outsourcing is cheaper than if you do all the accounting tasks yourself, there are several advantages to hiring a bookkeeper. 

For example:

Identifying Tax Savings

A good bookkeeper not only takes the hassle out of tax return preparation, but can also sometimes save you money on your tax bill.

Tax law is complicated, after all, and there may be special deductions or allowances you don’t know about.

Or perhaps by structuring your business or transactions, you can do business more cost-effectively.

Saving Time

By freeing up your time, you can apply them to other activities that can be of greater benefit to your business.

You can also have more mental freedom and focus without all those bookkeeping worries swirling around in your head.

Helping You Grow

As I mentioned earlier, accountants can provide more general business advice. Often you will have worked with the same bookkeeper for years, so they will know your business and can offer informed input on your decisions. They can help you make the right moves and promote growth and profitability.

Increase Efficiency In Other Situations

Accountants can help you with many other important tasks in your business. If you are writing a business plan, they can help you do it right and come up with realistic financial projections. If you decide on the right legal structure, they can tell you the pros and cons of each and help you customize your own. 

Cost to Hire a Bookkeper for Your Business

Interested in how much it costs to hire someone to do the books?

Of course, the cost will vary depending on location, the size of your business, and the type of services you want.

If basic bookkeeping is all your company needs at the moment, you’ll need to decide whether you’ll do it in-house or bring in an outside organization. If you decide to hire and manage an accountant, you will also have to choose whether that employee will be part-time or will need to be full-time. 

There are several options, including accounting services and firms. 

Let’s take a look at three different options your company may consider to fulfill this need and their costs.

Part-Time Bookkeeping For Businesses

The cost of a part-time bookkeeper can vary widely. Hourly pay for part-time staff accountants averages between $20 and $23 per hour, depending on the job duties.

They usually perform basic bookkeeper duties and need supervision and management.

If you can handle the work but need a little extra help, a part-time bookkeeper may be a good option for your business. 

They can do work such as entering receipts and tracking employee timesheets, accounts receivable, and accounts payable. When hiring a part-time bookkeeper, management still needs someone to check on the bookkeeper’s work.

Full-Time Bookkeeping For Businesses

Currently, the average salary for a full-time bookkeeper ranges from $48,000 to $70,000 per year, plus benefits and overhead, depending on location.

A full-time bookkeeper handles the day-to-day bookkeeping of your office. Keeping your bookkeeping in order and up-to-date is the foundation of your business’s financial stability. 

You might expect a full-time bookkeeper to handle transactions related to paying bills, billing clients, maintaining timesheets and payroll, and processing month-end financial reports. However, as a business owner, you will still need to review the results to make sure they are accurate.

Outsourcing Bookkeeping For Businesses

Just like hiring an in-house bookkeeper, you will have to decide which parts of your financial management make sense to outsource. 

The average price of outsourcing accounting varies depending on the number of transactions and the complexity of the services required. 

You can outsource more complex management accounting functions to get a full-fledged “virtual bookkeeper department”. This may increase your monthly costs, but it may be what you need at this stage of your growth. 

Outsourcing can provide better and less expensive bookkeeping services than a regular in-house accountant. It also offers many benefits that you can’t get by using an in-house accountant. 

If you’re growing, an outsourced bookkeeping service should be able to help you scale by adding full accounting services when you’re ready for them.

And just as importantly, you’ll be able to change the role of your existing part-time bookkeeper to that of a revenue-generating accountant.

You can hire a bookkeeper full-time, 40 hours a week from Eastern Europe (with 7+ years experience) for under $2,000 a month. Click here to learn how.

Cost to Hire a Bookkeeper
It’ll cost you $2,000 (or less) per month to hire a full-time bookkeeper from Eastern Europe.

Cheap Doesn’t Mean Effective

Don’t forget this.

The cheapest candidate can end up costing you a lot of money. Maintaining a stable business environment is more important than saving as much money as possible.

Small and medium-sized businesses are most useful to an experienced bookkeeper who knows record keeping and works with primary documents, and the specifics of calculating salaries. And also advance reports, reconciliation acts, estimates, and incoming and outgoing documents. Such a specialist will not come cheap, but can save you a lot.

Quality, efficient process optimization without a forward-thinking bookkeeper is impossible.

You can’t know everything.

But a 21st-century bookkeeper must be up-to-date, and able to deal with any issue.

How to Find a Good Bookkeeper for Your Business

If you’re ready to hire an accountant, you want to make sure you’re hiring the right professional.

A good place to start your search for a bookkeeper is the HireUa platform. 

HireUA is a recruiting firm that provides recruitment solutions to businesses around the world. The team of experienced recruiters utilizes their skills and industry knowledge. Therefore, the bookkeeper you find will have the appropriate qualifications.

When the company provides all the best accountants, don’t forget to ask them some questions to make a final decision on your choice.

Things to Consider When Hiring a Bookkeeper

Hiring a bookkeeper with HireUA will be much easier and more efficient. But the results can be even better if you know exactly what you want. 

It’s important for a business manager to first understand what kind of bookkeeper they need.

Will the bookkeeper specialist only generate postings, prepare and file reports, execute primary documents, and keep track of dues?

Or will they delve deeper into the company’s financial matters to understand the business outlook and participate in the company’s financial and tax planning?

Here are five of the most important characteristics:

#1. Understands Technology

Software is becoming more and more important for managing documents.

For example, learning how to use it properly can save you time and money in the future.

While many accountants may claim to be familiar with the accounting software you use, they need to know how to use all of its features.

#2. Logic-Based & Future-Oriented

Accountants should be able to examine specific data and financial statements and relate that data to your company.

Always consider “what-if” situations when planning.

For example, a smart bookkeeper can identify where your company can cut costs and better utilize its resources.

#3. Work Should Be Enjoyable

Make sure the person you hire enjoys dealing with statistics.

Productivity usually decreases if they are unhappy with their careers. Also, people may see accounting work as a short-term means of achieving their goals.

Employers usually look for a reliable bookkeeper for the long term because they deal with confidential information daily.

#4. Dedicated To Detail

A professional bookkeeper should be meticulous and keep a close eye on everything. For example, your specialist should be able to keep track of the customer, the terms of the sale, and the appropriate way to record and document the sale whenever you make it.

#5. Has a Working Knowledge of Tax Laws & Regulations

Although accountants don’t need to know everything. But they do need to understand the difference between an income statement and a balance sheet.

Personal qualities are also important.

The specifics of an accountant’s work require diligence, attention, patience, and the ability to communicate with people, hear them, and convey information to them. Think about whether it will be comfortable to communicate with this person on business matters.

Choose your bookkeeper carefully and define their tasks to find an employee who will impact the financial health and growth of your company.

Cost to Hire a Bookkeeper: Conclusion 

A bookkeeper for a small business is much more than just an income and expense report. It is a discipline that can become a major factor in the effectiveness of your own business. Therefore, you should not neglect such a tool.

Asking for help from specialists is one of the best solutions when it comes to the correct organization of bookkeeping in a small business. You should not take on all the tasks and neglect the opportunity to delegate responsibilities.

To hire a bookkeeper full-time for less than $2,000/month (with 7+ years experience), click here.

When you book a call, we’ll present some candidates and resumes for your review and break down the cost to hire a bookkeeper for your business.

About The Author

Anastasia Marinich

Anastasia was born in Odesa and realized at an early age that her work should be creative & enjoyable.

While studying marketing in her hometown, she moved to Germany and continued her education at 2 universities at the same time.As the saying goes "Choose a job to your heart's content and you won't have to work a day of your life!"

Anastasia obtained a degree in Art and has a knack for it. She takes the same approach to writing. Each text is like a picture with a special message and mood. Everyone will find something useful for themselves!

Today Anastasia lives and works in Germany. She travels a lot, practices Ashtanga yoga, learns new things, and continues her creative journey with the HireUA team!
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