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Bookkeeping vs Accounting – who do you need?

November 20, 2018


Bookkeeping vs Accounting – who do you need?

As an Incorporated Company, do you need a bookkeepr or an accountant? Actually, you probably need both! Find out why in our recent blog.

Incorporated companies, no matter how big or small, need to prepare financial statements and file corporate tax returns. They usually also need to file HST returns and pay source deductions and prepare T4s. But who do you need? A bookkeeper or an accountant? Actually, you probably need both.

In short, bookkeeping is the day-to-day work or the skilled work of keeping account of money transactions.  Accounting on the other hand, is the art of understanding the results or the system of setting up, maintaining, and auditing the books of a firm and analyzing the financial position of a business. Visualize an architecturally beautiful building (accounting) that is of no value if it doesn’t have a strong foundation (bookkeeping). You may not see the foundation, but without a good one, the whole structure, regardless of how beautiful it was, would be compromised.

Good bookkeepers are like skilled equipment operators. They have the experience and knowledge to record and reconcile your financial information quickly and accurately. Even if you are a very capable individual, and can do many of the entries yourself, things are never straightforward. There will be transactions that do not match up and the program will not be able to make the determination on how to allocate them. This may not seem like a big deal now, but ‘cleaning up’ transactions at yearend can be difficult and time consuming and won’t leave much time to look at tax efficiency or financial analysis.  So, just as an architect doesn’t operate the equipment, your accountant shouldn’t be doing the bookkeeping. It’s best to ensure your accountant focuses on analyzing what will benefit you the most instead.

At Davis Martindale, we not only have many excellent accountants, we also have certified bookkeepers to help you move from worry and stress about financial reporting and taxation requirements to peace of mind, so you can focus on what matters most in your business. We see this as a four-step process:

  1. Data Integrity – it all starts with solid financial data
  2. Tax Compliance – know when your taxes are due and be confident you are paying the correct amount
  3. Tax Efficiency – be confident you have not missed out on tax savings opportunities
  4. Priorities & Goals – once you have achieved steps 1-3, you can work toward your financial goals and other priorities with peace of mind

By beginning with a strong foundation of data, you’ll be able to withstand scrutiny and begin to shape your financial goals and your accountant can then start to build that beautiful structure of your dreams.

Whether you need bookkeeping, accounting or both, please contact the team at Davis Martindale to start designing your strong financial future.