How to Become a Bookkeeper: A Career Guide

How to Become a Bookkeeper: A Career Guide

Over 1.6 million bookkeepers work in the United States. They enjoy a certain amount of job security thanks to their skill set centered around math, accounting, and spreadsheets. No matter what industry a business is in, they need someone to manage the money. 

Unlike other money-centric positions, bookkeepers can get started with relatively little schooling and credentials. This makes it a great option for someone looking to change careers or who can’t afford to attend a four-year degree program. 

This guide on how to become a bookkeeper can help you determine if this career path is right for you. 

How to Become a Bookkeeper

You don’t have to go to college or have an expensive degree to get started as a bookkeeper. Many employers will hire you with a high school diploma or GED. You should have strong grades in math, computer technology, and communication. 

Start Basic Training 

Many people opt to receive some basic training before attempting to get hired. You can do this through self-teaching, but an official certification is powerful in bookkeeping. This lets employers know you are taking your career and future seriously. 

Pursue Higher Education 

If you want to progress further in your career after getting hired, then consider pursuing an associate’s and bachelor’s degree in accounting or business administration. This will develop your skills further and you’ll gain the ability to pursue positions with more demanding requirements. 

Choosing a Career Path

Bookkeeping careers span across industries as all businesses need someone who can manage the financial aspect of the business. As a professional bookkeeper, you can work in payroll, accounts receivable, general accounting, controller, or internal auditor. This makes the task of finding a job easier than other more focused skillsets. 

Apply For Positions 

Once you know what you want to do, start applying for those positions. Look for remote and local open positions and submit your application and resume. For the best results, tailor your cover letter, application, and resume for each position that you apply for. 

Employee of Freelance? 

Once you gain some experience, you can take control of your career. This could mean getting promoted and moving up the corporate ladder. However, it can also mean going out on your own and working for yourself. 

As a freelance bookkeeper, you can dictate your own hours, work from home, and have unlimited earning potential. However, you’ll need to pursue clients and develop your bookkeeping business to ensure you have a steady demand for services. 

Become a Professional Bookkeeper

If you are ready for a career change, then this guide on how to become a bookkeeper should help you. Perhaps you have the computer skills, organizational ability, and an eye for details that are necessary to be successful. If becoming a bookkeeper sounds interesting, start by taking a course to learn the basics, then pursue your first position to get real-world experience. 

Check out our other education and business-minded articles for more helpful guidance on choosing the right career path for your skills and interests. 

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