Bookkeeper vs. Accountant

The terms bookkeeper and accountant are often used interchangeably. However, they both hold very different roles. So what is the difference between a bookkeeper and an accountant?

Bookkeeper

A bookkeeper’s job is to keep an organization updated with ongoing financial recording and transactions. This includes processing invoices, receipts, payments, and other financial transactions. In addition, bookkeepers can process and maintain payroll systems, reconcile accounts, and manage accounts receivable and accounts payable. Usually one would be interacting with a bookkeeper on a more consistent basis than an accountant because bookkeepers are more in touch with the day to day intricacies of the organization.

Accountant

The job of an accountant is to analyze the data produced by the bookkeeper, report on it, and provide financial advice based on market based trends. They can provide taxation advice and planning, business establishment assistance, and the auditing of organizations. Accountants are more involved with the big picture of an organization’s finances and can weigh in on corporate reporting and compliance reporting and financial management advice.

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