What is the difference between bookkeeping and accounting?

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lesley louis answered
Accounting covers all financial aspects of a company or an organization, whereas bookkeeping is just a small part of accounting. A large company or organization would most probably have a bookkeeping department, whereas a small company may just have one member of staff that would cover all accounting issues or even outsource to a freelance accountant.

I have listed some jobs that the bookkeeping department would be responsible for;

• Accounts receivable - recording and reconciling payments coming into the bank.
• Accounts payable - recording and reconciling payments going out of the bank and ensuring invoices are paid on time.
• Raising invoices and sending to customers.
• Staff expenses

These are just examples of the kind of responsibilities a book keeper would have within a company.

Accounting is slightly more in depth; not only would they oversee the book keeper's responsibilities, they would also have their own jobs to do.
Here are a few examples of what an Accountant is responsible for;

• Overseeing the book keeper.
• Preparing the accounts for year end.
• Managing the companies taxes and insurances
• Setting up all other financial systems
• Preparing budgets for management.

So you can see there is a difference between bookkeeping and accounting, but every company or organization has different responsibilities for their accountants and book keepers.

To become an accountant there is a huge amount to learn and many levels of accountancy exams to tackle. You would need to go to college or university.
To become a bookkeeper it is a lot easier to get into, you could quite simply a as a trainee or a junior straight from school, work your way up and learn all there is to know from scratch, as every company has different ways of how they want their book keeping managed.

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