Optimal Qualities of a Successful Bookkeeper

Oct 27, 2022
Optimal Qualities of a Successful Bookkeeper

As your business grows and the demands on your time increase, you will find yourself with less and less time to spend on administrative and clerical work. While good financial management is the foundation for your business’s success, it involves a series of time-consuming tasks. Hiring or outsourcing to a professional bookkeeper can save a lot of time and help streamline the financial management. Some indicators a professional bookkeeper may be a good addition to your company:

· Your books are out-of-date and/or records are incomplete

· Your accounts payable and accounts receivable are habitually late

· Tax preparation is complicated or sloppy because of poor record- and receipt-storage

· You have poor cash-flow management

· Your business has grown and you don’t have the energy or time to devote to bookkeeping

When you are ready to take on professional assistance—either through in-house hiring or through virtual outsourcing—it is important to consider the traits that successful bookkeepers must possess and exhibit. Your ideal bookkeeper should be:


Your bookkeeper takes on a lot of daily financial tasks for your business, including paying bills, following up on client invoices, balancing accounts, assisting with payroll processing, collecting receipts for tax filing, and updating financial records. A highly-organized person is a must, preferably someone who can multi-task (but knows when not to).


Bookkeeping often requires data entry, a task highly prone to error. Good bookkeepers pay close attention to details in order to spot irregularities in the books and catch mistakes quickly. A good bookkeeper spots numbers that seem off, have been entered wrong, have digits that are transposed, or are missing altogether. The attention to detail is also needed for making sure payments are always issued on time, outstanding invoices are followed-up on consistently, and that accounts are always up-to-date. Small mistakes can become costly ones, so attention to detail is paramount.

A good communicator

Your bookkeeper needs to be able to communicate clearly, efficiently, and regularly with you regarding financial matters. Depending on the size of your company, she or he may also need to communicate with other employees (as well as vendors or clients) to keep everyone on the same page regarding financial matters. Your bookkeeper should be able to communicate not only clearly, but professionally—and not just verbally, but in writing, as well, especially if she or he does a lot of the bookkeeping virtually or off site.


Integrity is one of the most important traits a bookkeeper must possess. She or he is working with sensitive financial information and must be trusted to maintain confidentiality with you and also your clients. She or he must also be trusted to use optimal security standards in safeguarding online data and accounts, as well as maintaining privacy for employees whose payroll info may be shared.

Tech savvy

While not necessarily a technology expert, your ideal bookkeeper should be familiar with one or more of the automated financial software for small and growing businesses. Fortunately, many of the automated accounting, payroll, and invoicing products on the market today are remarkably user-friendly and can be learned well through consistent and repeated use. And since they are primarily cloud-based online products, all updates and troubleshooting are handled for you automatically, with no IT needed on the user’s end. Online check printing allows you create fully-customized business checks and streamlines the financial management for those times when a paper check is needed. Checkeeper was designed with bookkeepers in mind and can integrate seamlessly with QuickBooks Online, Harvest, Xero, FreshBooks, and others.