Beat the bookkeeping blues – Sunshine Coast bookkeeper

How to find a super Sunshine Coast Bookkeeper

You don’t just want any bookkeeper to help you with your business you want the best bookkeeper you can find in your area.   One who is flexible and understands your business needs.   Trust, the right qualifications and someone who can provide you with the information you need in plain English is what you are looking for.  So how do you find the right bookkeeping fit for your business?

I’ve been a Sunshine Coast bookkeeper helping businesses like you with their bookkeeping needs for the past 16 years and this is what I think makes for a super bookkeeper.

Qualifications, accreditation and experience.

Your bookkeeper should be qualified and be part of a recognised bookkeeping organisation like AAT (Australian Accounting Technicians) They should be a BAS Agent registered with the Tax Practitioners Board so you can be satisfied that your bookkeeper has the required skills, qualifications and experience to correctly code your accounts for GST and prepare your BAS. Use this link to check if your bookkeeper is registered.

Price sometimes relates to experience but if you are simply comparing hourly rates, a more experienced bookkeeper may seem expensive but they are most likely to work significantly faster and smarter.  From my own experience I can get done in a couple of hours what may take a less experienced bookkeeper a full day.

Understand your business needs.

Taking the time to get to understand how you and your business work and adapting the bookkeeping process and software to work as simply and efficiently as possible avoiding time spent on unnecessary processes.

Asks you lots of annoying questions.

This may not seem like a plus but it is.  Bookkeepers are more hands on and are able to ask questions to ensure transactions are correctly allocated, it is better that your bookkeeper ask questions rather than guess.

 Knowing their limits.

Good bookkeepers know when to get advice from accountants and are not afraid to say “I don’t know’.  Bookkeepers have a role and Accountants have a role.

Up to date and well informed.

As I write this I’m on the train home from a day in Brisbane learning all about the new features and the future of Reckon Accounts the accounting software I use and love.    It is important that your bookkeeper is up to date with what is happening in the bookkeeping, accounting and technology spaces. The bookkeeping and accounting industries have evolved considerably over the past few years due to changing technologies.

Your bookkeeper should be keeping you up to date with technology to save time and money by automating processes with cloud accounting packages such as Reckon One or Reckon Hosted the latest offerings in cloud software.

Likable and trust worthy.

If I was asked what was the most important thing in my business I would have to say it was the relationships I have built with my clients.  The trust that my clients put in me sharing their financial detail and lives is something I will never take lightly.

Bookkeeping is not fun but necessary so it helps if like your bookkeeper and feel comfortable discussing your business honestly and openly with them. Your bookkeeper needs this transparency to help you get the most out of your accounting software and bookkeeping.

There are a number of software accounting packages available and you can usually download a trial to see which one has the best functionality to work in with your business.  As a Sunshine Coast Bookkeeper I have been using and working with Reckon Accounts (formerly QuickBooks) for the past 16 years and still enjoy it. They offer desktop and cloud solutions and have a range of products to suit any size and shape of business.
Once you choose the software you like invest in getting hands on training so you get set up correctly from the beginning and get the most from you accounting software.

There has been much talk over the past months about Super Stream asking if you are ready.  As a Sunshine Coast bookkeeper I have put together the following article which outlines these changes.

Businesses with 19 or fewer employees have been reminded that their superannuation payment arrangements will change from 1 July 2015 as a result of the introduction of SuperStream arrangements.

From 1 July 2015, small business employers with fewer than 19 employees will need to start making superannuation contributions electronically using the SuperStream standard. They will have until 30 June 2016 to meet the SuperStream requirements when sending superannuation contributions on behalf of their employees.

Medium or large businesses with 20 or more employees began making their superannuation payments using SuperStream from 1 July 2014. They have until 30 June 2015 to meet the SuperStream requirements

Businesses with fewer than 19 employees can meet the SuperStream requirements by making their contributions through the Government's Small Business Superannuation Clearing House (SBSCH).

The SBSCH is a free, online service for small businesses (with 19 or fewer employees), through which they can pay contributions to a number of superannuation funds as part of a single transaction.

The SuperStream standard is part of the government's Super Reform package. It is designed to provide a consistent, reliable electronic method of transacting linked data and payments for superannuation. Its goal is to improve the efficiency of the superannuation system, to improve the timeliness of processing of rollovers and contributions, and reduce the number of lost accounts and unclaimed monies.

Under SuperStream, employers must make superannuation contributions electronically. The contribution data is sent electronically in a message format to the fund, and the contribution payment is sent electronically through the banking system. The data message and payment are linked by a payment reference number, which enables reconciliation by the receiving fund.

Options for smaller employers who choose not to use the SBSCH and for larger employers not able to use it include:
• a software solution that conforms to SuperStream or
• a service provider who can arrange SuperStream compliance on your behalf.

Possible solutions include:
• upgrading payroll software
• using an outsourced payroll or other service provider
• using a commercial clearing house or,
• an employer's default superannuation fund may have an electronic channel they manage through which payments to other funds can be distributed.

Employers will need to collect and store additional information about funds in order to send them contributions in accordance with the SuperStream standard


Click below to view source

ATO: Preparing for SuperStream Do you have 19 or fewer employees

- See more at:


As I sit surrounded by technology I remember a time when I worked in a bustling atmosphere with girls running around from office to office.   Taking dictation, sending telex, using microfiche with the noise of manual typewriters and gestetner machines in the background – oh and plug and chord phone systems.    For those of you who have never heard of gestetners, telex and microfiche I’m sure you can Google them.

In the past 3 decades technology has blossomed and now is growing at such a pace it has its own language and a dedicated dictionary.

Personally, I think technology is wonderful - almost magical at times.   Small business couldn’t exist without the pc, Smartphone and tablets and now we have the cloud.

When I Google cloud I get this:

“A visible mass of condensed water vapor floating in the atmosphere, typically high above the ground.”

And from Wikipedia:

“Cloud computing is the use of computing resources (hardware and software) that are delivered as a service over a network (typically the Internet). The name comes from the use of a cloud-shaped symbol as an abstraction for the complex infrastructure it contains in system diagrams. Cloud computing entrusts remote services with a user's data, software and computation.”

Bookkeeping too has to keep up with the times and thank goodness.  Imagine having to enter the same transaction several times over several rather heavy lined and ruled paper books and adding up manually – GST would have really been a nightmare and you had to have really nice handwriting.

With bookkeeping/accounting software you enter something once and it gets sent to all the correct places and essential business reports can be created with the click of a mouse.  The cloud has now taken that one step further with the introduction of software like XERO and QuickBooks Hosted enabling you to access your financial information from anywhere anytime.   It also allows easy sharing of your financial information with your bookkeeper(BAS Agent), Accountant and Financial Adviser so they can be up to date with your  business progress.

However...  the idea of technology to me is to make our lives easier and hopefully free up time for family, hobbies, interests, dreams.  Hence the title Business unplugged...

It is wonderful to access your business anywhere anytime but I urge you to unplug every once and awhile and smell the roses.  If you are taking a holiday take a holiday and  if you feel you can’t totally unplug from your business try and keep it to a minimal.  Some of you I know set computer time limits on your children maybe we need to do the same for ourselves.




It is a handy feature to keep track of tasks you want to complete by a certain date. You can look at your notes in the To Do list at any time, or you can use the Reminders list to see the notes whose dates are due.

To Do List is under the Company menu at the top of the page.  Click To Do at the bottom of the list and then New.

Enter the note as you want it to appear on the To Do list.

Enter the date in the Remind me on box and this will also appear on your Reminders list.

Click OK.

*Be aware that if you create a To Do note in multi-user mode, everyone using the company file can see the note.


To Do List is under Company at the top menu bar in Quick Books
To Do List is under Company at the top menu bar in Reckon Accounts