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Bookkeepers are required by all size companies. Everyone from startups to small businesses and corporations require a bookkeeper to manage and maintain the financial records, either as employees or as self-employed professionals.
With demand strong in many areas of Canada, particularly in business hubs, there is ample opportunity for bookkeepers to freelance, work part time, full time, or run a business as a contractor.
Bookkeepers are generalists who usually work in small- to medium-sized offices, processing all financial transactions for a company and entering them into a ledger or software program. Therefore, the bulk of your job involves managing, creating, and updating financial records and ensuring the company’s books are accurate and up to date.
Like most careers, bookkeeping salaries in Canada increase with experience. Depending on where you are located in the country, you can expect to make $35,000 to $45,000 in entry level jobs. You can expect to make up to $60,000 per year once you have 7 or more years of experience. Naturally, by adding new skills, certifications, and proving to be an invaluable part of your company, you may be able reach top rate before the 7 year mark.
If you operate as a consultant or contractor, you will not have a cap on your salary and have the opportunity to increase your earning potential.
As a bookkeeper you perform both administrative and accounting tasks for your employer. Some common tasks involve:
Bookkeepers are in a unique position where they are in demand across the country and by companies of all sizes. This means that you could work almost anywhere in Canada. Naturally, regions with a large business presence such as Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, and Montreal present the most opportunities for bookkeepers.
With the rise in freelance contractors and small businesses, bookkeepers are in particular demand for these type of companies – providing an opportunity for you to work independently.
Bookkeepers, much like accountants and other financial professionals, need to have strong business skills, with an emphasis on dealing with financial records. The skills that are in demand for professional bookkeepers include:
Bookkeepers typically have a post-secondary degree in an accounting discipline. As a general rule, the higher your level of training and education, the more opportunities you will have exposure to once you enter the job market.
Bookkeepers also need to be bondable. Aside from technical competence in accounting and accounting software, bookkeepers must have a high degree of professionalism and respect confidentiality. Bookkeepers can enhance their credentials by becoming certified by the Canadian Institute of Bookkeeping.
Depending on the position, bookkeeper jobs may require several years of experience in addition to their education and training requirements.
Bookkeepers are in high demand by all types of organizations. A skilled bookkeeper is a huge asset for companies, particularly small and medium sized companies that may not have a large accounting team.
Since bookkeeper positions require a thorough knowledge of accounting principles, proficiency in office and accounting software, math aptitude, and excellent technical skills in various accounting functions, many bookkeepers go on to become accountants with more education and training. Depending on your organization, this training may be paid for.