Your years of training and apprenticeship have made you an expert when it comes to plumbing systems and pipe fixtures. You have worked hard to build your business, grow your clientele base, and spend a considerable amount of time traveling to different job sites to provide a service that only a select few can.
It makes sense that you may be looking to hire a bookkeeper to assist you with your day-to-day finances. Managing your business, along with your books, can be time-consuming and can take your focus away from more important aspects of your operation.
When looking to hire a bookkeeper, there are a few key points that you should keep in mind.
1. Industry experience and knowledge
As a professional in the plumbing industry, your business has some unique accounting needs. Any bookkeeper will ensure your books are balanced and updated each month. They will know tasks such as bank and credit card reconciliations, sales tax filings, coding of transactions, and preparing financial reports.
Even so, you want to be sure that the bookkeeper that you choose has experience working with other plumbing or construction-based companies and has knowledge of your industry's specific accounting needs.
Your chosen bookkeeper should help you set up your chart of accounts in such a way that allows you to organize your finances in a meaningful manner. They should have knowledge about creating additional accounts such as job materials purchased and equipment rental.
For example, the payroll for your plumbing technicians should be a direct cost of goods sold, whereas your admin staff's payroll should be listed under your overhead costs. Your bookkeeper needs to allocate your costs appropriately to give you good visibility on your gross margin.
Plumbing businesses rely on job costing to understand their profitability on each job clearly. Therefore, you need to have a bookkeeper to track the revenue and expenses assigned to each project.
2. Payroll expertise
Payroll legislations are constantly changing, and you need to hire a reliable bookkeeper who is knowledgeable and current on all legislations. It is essential to track WSIB, CPP, and EI deductions, Employer Health Tax, vacation pay, and Worker's Compensation to stay compliant with payroll legislation. Your chosen bookkeeper should be fully certified in payroll compliance.
It is essential to have a payroll process in your business where vacation is tracked, benefits are appropriately reflected on employee pay stubs, and remittances are calculated and remitted accurately and on time.
3. Familiarity with accounting technology
Your bookkeeping processes need to be reliable and allow you to be as efficient as possible. Fortunately, many accounting technologies on the market can help streamline your accounting workflow.
Your bookkeeper needs to understand how to use these tools to create an efficient bookkeeping process for your business. Doing so will allow you to save a significant amount of time on manual data entry and will also reduce your bookkeeping costs. Plus, you eliminate the need for physical document storage when you take advantage of cloud-based technology.
Your bookkeeper should know how to use different accounting tools to make your receivables and payables processes more efficient, ultimately improving your cash flow. Software like QuickBooks Online and Dext Prepare can help you manage your expenses, while platforms like Plooto can assist with vendor payments.
Your bookkeeper should be able to provide you and your entire team with proper training on how to use all of this technology efficiently as well.
4. Ability to grow with your business
When hiring a bookkeeper, it is crucial that you find someone that can scale alongside your business. If you hire an in-house bookkeeper or a part-time bookkeeping contractor, their capacity might be limited. As your business grows, they may not be capable of growing alongside you.
Outsourcing your bookkeeping to a specialized bookkeeping firm means that you have access to a team of bookkeepers that can take on the extra work required as your business expands. They can also provide you with other accounting services such as payroll, accounts payable management, accounts receivable management, and controllership services, all of which will come in handy as your business grows.
Hiring a bookkeeper to take over the tedious task of managing your books is an excellent idea. It will free up your time and allow you to commit more of your resources to expand your business and make critical financial decisions. Enkel can help with all of your bookkeeping and back-office solutions.
Our team of trained professionals can provide your plumbing business with the current economic data that you require to run a successful plumbing business. Plus, we are knowledgeable about your industry and the accounting technology that will best assist you. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.