EMPLOYEE VS INDEPENDENT BOOKKEEPER
The cost effectiveness of hiring a bookkeeper as an employee versus hiring an independent bookkeeper is often difficult to determine for business owners and nonprofit leadership.
Business owners and nonprofit leadership often come to the incorrect conclusion that hiring a bookkeeper as an employee is the best use of their organization’s money. In most cases bookkeeping is only a small part of an organization’s day to day administration; hiring an employee is not required. A business or nonprofit can hire a professional bookkeeper for a few hours a week or month to address the organization’s bookkeeping needs.
We often get asked about giving bookkeeping responsibilities to the administrative assistant or receptionist, or about hiring a professional bookkeeper to do both the bookkeeping and administration responsibilities.
First, a professional bookkeeper tends to be paid more than a receptionist or an administrative assistant, if the organization is paying a receptionist to do the bookkeeping than there is likely a question of competency. If the organization is paying a professional bookkeeper to do a receptionist’s work than the organization is paying too much.
Second, hiring a single individual to address the organization’s bookkeeping and administrative responsibilities increases the risk of fraud. Risk is much lower when the bookkeeping duties are segregated between a professional bookkeeper and another individual.