If you have worked in an office and are good with figures then with the right bookkeeping software and the correct know how of this software you could learn how to start your own home based bookkeeping business. You will need to be aware of the different requirements that your clientele will want before buying these programs.
If you wish to work for smaller business clients then you may not need to buy the latest programs. Some programs like MYOB will do virtually anything. They will record accounts paid and received and show each detail of these transactions. Whereas other clients may wish to keep payments in their own accounting system and need a professional bookkeeper to prepare their profit and loss, GST, PAYE and tax information.
For the simpler account records an excel spreadsheet may be one way of showing your client how to set up pages for them to record spending and buying expenses. Therefore customers' requirements will differ from client to client.
What you need for a Home based bookkeeping Office
Working from home does not mean you can have the children running in and out of your office when you have clients. Set up a working schedule. If you have school children; encourage your clients during school hours or arrange for someone else to keep the children occupied when clients call.
When you first start you will not have to have a large office; a basic desk, computer, printer, phone, fax and filing cabinet may be enough to get you started.
Confidentiality and Security
Client confidentiality is of utmost importance, when dealing with any business. Your client will need to know they can rely on you keeping their records secure and safe from prying eyes. They would not want anyone to learn personal details of their business.
Checkout your bookkeeping business opposition
Start out with simple accounts, learn what your opposition is doing and offer something extra. You could offer a mobile service or pick-up and delivery service. As you learn and feel more confident take on more challenging jobs.
Charging your clients
Do your homework; make a few calls and ask questions as though you were a prospective client. Make a note of these and charge less to get your foot in the door. As you gain experience you could increase your prices.
Make sure your client knows how they can pay for your services. Don't wait until they hand you a cheque which you are sure will bounce. If you do not want to accept cheques, put a sign depicting this.
Finding bookkeeping business clients
Ask your friends if they know of anyone that needs a bookkeeper. I would not recommend doing theirs, because they would not want you to know how much they are worth.
Print up some business cards. Spread these around your local small businesses. Some shopping centers have a notice board where you could put a business card. Or print up a small notice on these boards offering a friendly reliable service.
Another way to advertise is over the internet, although you will need to state which areas that your business will cover. If you do decide to deliver and pick up then you will not want to drive 100 kilometers back and forth. Therefore you need to make this very clear in your advert.
- Never take on more work than you can provide. It's better to decline a new customer rather than let them down.
- If you are not sure how to do something, ask someone more qualified. Mistakes will come back to haunt you.
- Keep providing an accurate and reliable service and you will continue to grow your home based bookkeeping business.
Other Ideas for Home based businesses