No matter how good you think you are at wearing a million different hats as the founder of a startup, there is one hat that you should look to take off as soon as possible when you start your new venture. That hat, of course, is bookkeeping. Even if you are an accounting genius, as a founder it is wise to have someone on your team that is not emotionally attached to the numbers because, at times, you will be.
A good bookkeeper should bring a certain degree of experience to your venture, and when searching for the right one for your company, consider facts such as whether they worked in a startup environment before, or whether they more proficient working with small businesses or within a particular industry.
While at its core bookkeeping is all about being on top of the numbers, you need someone that is going to work with you to grow the business. Experience or an interest in the sector you play in is critical, because the incumbent is more likely to grasp your long-term vision.
Planning for the future is also important. Do you want someone green that is going to grow and develop as the business grows? Or are you building a rapid-growth startup, in which case you are going to need someone with the education level and skill set already in place in order to ensure your business does not buckle under the extra administrative pressure.
The best kind of bookkeeper always thinks a dozen steps ahead of you, and should be helping you prevent problems from occurring as opposed to just being there to help you solve them. The key is to find an individual that sees themselves as a business partner. In seeing themselves this way, they will take the time to familiarise themselves with your company’s policies and procedures, as well as the overall strategic direction you are taking. In doing so, they will do everything in their power to make sure your company is a financially successful one.
In the world we live in, being able to access your numbers as a business owner at all times is a necessity. Working with software and online platforms like MYOB allows both yourself and your finance team to pay bills, receive payments and access all your financial data online from anywhere around the world at any time of the day.
In business today, having a streamlined, cost-effective and efficient system operating in the back end is just as vital to a startup’s survival as sales. Spreadsheets just don’t allow businesses to scale in the 21st century.
Not having a proper grasp on the numbers is one of the top reasons why new businesses fail. Leveraging cloud-based technologies and having the right bookkeeper in your corner will allow you to be proactive, but also react quickly when situations arise.
Bookkeepers exist to help business owners make good, calculated decisions on a daily basis. They keep business owners honest about what is really happening in their business.