How to Become a Bookkeeper: The Benefits of Becoming One and Starting Your Own Business

two young smiling bookkeepers


If you’re considering a career in bookkeeping, you’re making a wise decision. Bookkeepers are in high demand, and the field is growing rapidly. In this blog post, we will discuss how to become a bookkeeper, the benefits of becoming one and starting your own bookkeeping business. So if you’re ready to start your career as a bookkeeper, keep reading!

Reasons Why People Want to Become a Certified Bookkeeper

There are many reasons why people want to become bookkeepers. Some of the most popular reasons include:

  • They enjoy working with numbers and bookkeeping is a perfect way to use those skills.
  • They want to be their own boss and bookkeeping offers the perfect opportunity to do that.
  • They want to work from home and bookkeeping is a great way to do that.
  • They want to help businesses save money and bookkeeping is an excellent way to do that.
  • They enjoy working with people, and bookkeeping allows them to do that.

In today’s modern world, most of us are blessed with approximately 4 weeks or less job security. That is the average notice period extended by your employer under your employment contract or a Modern Award.

Times have changed; faceless corporations hire and fire at will, forcing people into part-time and casual jobs to limit costs. It isn’t quite that bad—or that simple. There are restrictions in place to prevent wrongful termination and redundancy rights for employees; nevertheless, we’ve witnessed how rapidly these failsafe measures were relaxed during tough periods such as the COVID pandemic.

There are still a lot of excellent employers out there, ones that value and protect their employees and who put their hands into their own pockets to keep them employed through COVID. However, we believe that we can all agree that time has changed and that continual self-improvement and learning is now essential. Upskilling may be necessary. You may have to take on a new role or change career paths.

We think it’s safe to say that bookkeeping is here to stay. Technology has only made bookkeepers more in demand as businesses look for ways to save money and become more efficient.

What Exactly Does a Bookkeeper Do?

A bookkeeper is responsible for recording and maintaining the financial records of a business. The duties of a bookkeeper can include keeping track of income, expenses, assets, liabilities and equity. Bookkeepers also prepare financial statements, reconcile bank accounts and manage payroll.

In other words, bookkeepers are the unsung heroes of the business world. They keep the wheels turning by making sure that the financial records are accurate and up to date.

What Are the Benefits of Becoming a Bookkeeper?

Bookkeeping in Australia is an in-demand profession with many benefits. Here are some of the top benefits of becoming a bookkeeper:

  • You can be your own boss – One of the best things about bookkeeping is that you can be your own boss. You can start your own bookkeeping business and work from home.
  • You can work part-time or full-time – bookkeeping is a flexible profession, and you can choose to work part-time or full-time. This is perfect for stay-at-home parents or anyone who wants to have a flexible schedule.
  • You can work from anywhere in the world – bookkeeping is not location dependent, so you can work from anywhere in the world.
  • You can make a good incomebookkeepers in Australia earn a median salary of $68,250 per year.
  • You can help businesses save money – bookkeepers play an important role in helping businesses save money. By keeping track of income and expenses, bookkeepers can help businesses identify areas where they are overspending and make changes to save money.

professional bookkeeper doing paperwork

How to Become a Certified Bookkeeper?

You don’t need any special regulatory qualification to work as a bookkeeper. In fact, many beginners start off in their basic Admin/Reception duties and gradually understand how to utilise accounting software over time! A Certificate III in Accounts Administration (FNS30317) is an entry-level accounting credential that includes bookkeeping components and may be suitable for individuals interested in learning “on the job.” You will likely need to do more studying to become a qualified bookkeeper. The next step would be to get the Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping (FNS40217).

When working for an employer you can undertake bookkeeping with little to no formal qualification. If you’re wanting to start your own bookkeeping company, things are quite a bit different!

If you want to ‘practice’ as a bookkeeper in order to sell your time/services for financial compensation, you’ll need to tick a few more boxes. The entry requirement is a Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping (FNS40217), which must be completed through a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). The course duration is usually 12 months. This course is recognised by the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB) as the minimum requirement for entry into and award of the ICB logo.

To be able to execute the full range of bookkeeping services, especially the preparation of Business Activity Statements (BAS) and advise on GST services, you must first be accredited by the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB). The TPB requires a completion of an accounting and bookkeeping certification program in order to apply for registration as a BAS Agent (FNS40217). However, there are several more criteria that must be satisfied in order to demonstrate both suitability and competence/experience.

  • Fit & Proper Person
  • Relevant Qualification
  • 1000-1400 hours of experience
  • Professional Indemnity

Further detail can be obtained here:

What Are the Benefits of Starting Your Own Bookkeeping Business?

Starting your own bookkeeping business has many benefits. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits and some of the challenges and considerations:

  • Low-cost start-up
    • Laptop, software
    • Website
    • Bookkeeping courses
    • Time
  • Flexible hours
    • Get more time with your family
    • Take care of school runs
  • Work from home
    • No more Commute!
    • Gain 2 hours of your day back and save on travel costs
  • Set your value/charge out rate
    • Bookkeepers charge from $50 and $80+ per hour
    • $70,000 to $150,000 in income a year.
  • Choose which clients you want to work with
    • You are in charge if you don’t like your client you can leave them!
  • Relatively recession and pandemic proof
    • Through the recent pandemic, the need for good bookkeepers to assist companies with compliance and Government support increased significantly.
    • Compliance-based nature of BAS & Bookkeeping means it’s an essential spend.

If you want to become a bookkeeper, now is the time to act. Enrol in our online course and start learning the skills you need to succeed in this rapidly growing field. The benefits of becoming a bookkeeper are clear – high demand, versatile skills, and the ability to work from home. So what are you waiting for? Start your journey towards a successful career today!

The Australian Institute of Finance Training offers online self-paced courses in Business, Entrepreneurship and Accounting. Targeted at students looking to enter the bookkeeping industry, start or scale their own business and those looking to simply upskill. We have a suite of targeted Nationally Recognised qualifications alongside specific skill-based ‘how to’ style short courses where you can learn practical skills for everyday use.

For more information please contact us at (07) 3556 3831 or via email at [email protected].