No matter the stage or size, every business needs a bookkeeper. Whether you just want to stay on top of your finances or you have a business that’s large enough to require filing, understanding what’s required of your bookkeeping means you need to master a few skills.
According to the Singapore Companies Act all resident companies in Singapore have a mandate to maintain a proper book of accounts. There are various other requirements, stipulated by ACRA and IRAS that include cash flow, reviews, budgeting financial statements and more.
Learning bookkeeping and taking a bookkeeping course is an invaluable addition to any founder, or anyone wanting to understand and add insight to the financial side of the business. It certainly makes keeping your books much easier.
As a bookkeeper, you’re responsible for maintaining accurate accounting records. A full-charge bookkeeper handles all the accounting processes for a business, while other bookkeepers are required to handle specific tasks given by the employer, such as payroll or receivables.
For an entry-level bookkeeping position, some employers only require you to have a high school diploma, but most employers also expect some type of work experience. This means that learning how to use accounting software, taking some online bookkeeping courses, and even getting certified as a bookkeeper can help your career.
Bookkeeping in Singapore
In Singapore there are a few critical areas of focus for anyone interested in bookkeeping. This includes knowledge of SFRS and IRAS.
SFRS has a few nuances compared to International Financial Reporting standards (IFRS) and knowledge in this area is critical.
This becomes important when looking at when to apply certain depreciation methods, including straight-line or accelerated. Other key areas of focus, laid out by the SFRS are real estate valuation, inventory valuation and deferred taxes.
Knowledge regarding various Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) regulations is also critical as it has implications regarding tax credit.
Another key area of focus is the audit process, and how it works in Singapore. There are various exemptions in relation to annual revenue and company shareholders which impact audits.
While knowledge and areas of focus are key, a course or accreditation add a professional angle and edge.
The following free and low-cost online bookkeeping courses, certifications and organisations that offer courses are all stepping stones in helping add depth to any bookkeeping initiative.
Free and Low-Cost Online Bookkeeping Courses
The e-learning site, Coursera, has a wealth of materials from colleges and universities around the globe. Their collection of accounting and bookkeeping courses is impressive. While many of their courses have a cost, you can opt for the free versions of whatever courses you decide to take. If you’re only attending for your own knowledge, this is perfect.
Some of their financial courses include:
- Business Analytics
- Financial Reporting
- Fundamentals of Accounting I and II
If you want to take advantage of their accreditation, you can start with a free online bookkeeping course for seven days, then pay just $79 each month for the course or any other course you choose.
Association of Chartered Certified Accounts
The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) offers an Introduction to Bookkeeping free of charge. It is aimed at business owners, leaders, entrepreneurs and accountants alike.
Some of the course content include:
- Business transactions
- The banking system and double entry bookkeeping
No previous knowledge of accounting is required.
Bookkeeping Certificates and Programs
Today’s business world means you might face a new challenge daily, as the business environment is ever-changing. Quickbooks Online and various organisations offer various bookkeeping programs to help you attain the level of mastery you choose.
Spring College International
Spring College International offers two courses: The LCCI Level 1 Certificate in Bookkeeping and the LCCI Level 2 Diploma in Bookkeeping and Accounting. They give the opportunity to develop the ability to maintain books to a high standard. Everything from a foundation in bookkeeping and accounting practices and the accounts for sole traders and companies is covered.
Upon completion taking the relevant Pearson exam, a certificate is awarded by Pearson Education Limited.
Where Bookkeeping and QuickBooks meet
Whether you are venturing into bookkeeping for your own interests, or you’re starting a new position with a company to track and manage their finances, having a strong understanding of bookkeeping is fundamental.
If you own the business you’re going to be keeping the books for, learning all you can about how to keep your own finances straight saves time and money come tax season.
If you are looking to supplement and add value to your bookkeeping course, the QuickBooks Online offering helps you manage your work, your clients and your practice, all from an easy to use interface. You can learn more, study and take the two-part exam here.