What is virtual bookkeeping and how does it work?

by | Oct 19, 2023

As a business owner, staying on top of your finances is a priority.

Hiring in-house finance staff can be expensive, but what if there was a way to manage your finances efficiently without breaking the bank?

This is where virtual bookkeeping comes in.

What is virtual bookkeeping?

Virtual bookkeeping, also known as online bookkeeping, is a process of managing a business’s financial transactions and records remotely through cloud-based accounting software.

This is different to traditional bookkeeping services, which typically involve in-person meetings and more manual data sharing.

Thanks to the flexibility of cloud accounting tools, virtual bookkeeping allows businesses to access their books from anywhere, as long as they have an internet connection.

How do virtual bookkeepers work?

Virtual bookkeepers have the same skills and follow the same best practices as traditional bookkeepers – they just offer that service online, along with all the flexibility it brings.

Cloud accounting software allows businesses to upload all of their financial documents and records onto a secure, cloud-based system.

The virtual bookkeeper can then access, categorise and record these documents remotely in the business’s accounting software.

The software also enables the bookkeeper to generate financial reports, track expenses, create invoices, manage payroll, and more.

Depending on the kind of service they offer, a virtual bookkeeper might communicate regularly with their clients through video calls or other channels.

Benefits of virtual bookkeeping

Virtual bookkeeping offers several benefits, including:

  • Cost savings. Hiring an in-house bookkeeper can be time-consuming, and comes with a hefty price tag. With virtual bookkeeping, businesses can cut down on overhead costs and reduce the need for additional office space.
  • Time savings. Many business owners, especially in smaller firms, spend hours of time managing their bookkeeping themselves. By hiring an experienced virtual bookkeeper, you can use that time more efficiently.
  • Real-time information sharing. Virtual bookkeeping provides businesses with immediate access to financial records, giving them a clear picture of their performance at any time.
  • Potential for automation. Once you’re set up with an online accounting platform, you have access to a range of time-saving features and integrations. (Xero, for example, offers a huge choice of integrations on its app store, from expense management to CRM software and more.)
  • Peace of mind. By handing over your bookkeeping responsibilities to an experienced professional, you’ll have the security of knowing your records are in line with regulatory requirements. Accurate and reliable data also offers a valuable foundation for other accounting processes.

Who can benefit from virtual bookkeeping?

Virtual bookkeeping is a great option for small businesses, startups and entrepreneurs, especially those with limited office space and resources. It is also an excellent choice for business owners who travel frequently or work remotely, allowing them to access their financial records on-the-go.

Bookkeeping can give you the essential building blocks for your accounts, but it’s worth bearing in mind that if you’re looking for more in-depth guidance or specialist support, you might need a more specialist service.

Management accounts, for example, can draw out the narrative behind your financial information, while business advisory services help you make strategic choices and develop your business.

Whatever level of service you need, virtual bookkeeping is a great first step.

Get in touch

Virtual bookkeeping is an innovative and cost-effective way for businesses to manage their finances.

It offers greater flexibility, convenience, and accessibility than traditional bookkeeping, making it a great option for small firms and startups.

At Cottons, we offer virtual bookkeeping services and can also advise and support you with cloud accounting solutions. Get in touch to find out more.


Ready to connect?

If you’re curious about how we can help you, please reach out: our team is very keen to hear from you.

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