Oh my goodness me! Just read an email from Accounting Web which is clearly an advertising email but I then saw the startling first sentence …
Bookkeeping is essential, but it takes so much time and adds little value.
I am actually in shock. This business works to get clients information in real time. Accountants are still, in the main (and certainly where I work with clients) are rarely spoken to or communicated with other than VAT return periods and year ends. Fully appreciate that I work at the very small (micro) side of businesses but to make a startling claim that whilst bookkeeping is essential … it adds little value. I am horrified! Shock and horror in one paragraph so you can tell I am surprised.
When done right with care about what the business needs from its figures, then bookkeeping is not just essential but massively value laden. If the bookkeeper has that keen eye and interest in the business rather than just what the accountant needs then those figures can sing, and they can sing massively quicker than waiting for an accountant to cast their eyes on the figures.
Newer accounting systems are quickly realising that the added value comes from real time information making sense to the business and these accounting software companies are running to add on impressive charts and graphs that make quick sense of the data that is going in to the software, however to baldy state that whilst bookkeeping is essential it adds little value is taking one step too far in my world.
Clients who I work with are often already lost on their accounts … all too often when I get into a business, the accounting practice will have put the clients with a package, no training ever given and the support you get from the accounting practice is all too often the junior in training who may well have knowledge of accounts but not about running businesses and so you get a system that is just there to push figures into and those systems can definitely not add value but to say that it takes so much time or adds little value is just not true. Bookkeeping starts with figures going in right, all the time and, more positively, if you understand how well a nominal ledger can be set up to talk for the business too then figures that add day-to-day value will appear for your clients – or at least they do in my world.
Am not going to mention who the organisation was that was advertising through Accounting Web but for once, I am going to say that they should be ashamed of making a much needed task into something that is derided just for the sake of attention getting work for themselves. It is clear that they are targeting the larger corporate markets but to put everyone in a box … they are so wrong in my world however I guess that to catch your eyes then their statement worked to me so kudos to them for making me shocked as I did then read the article but did not agree with it but we would be a very dull world if everyone agreed with everything eh?