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Please help me with the wording of my bookkeeping ad....

(37 Posts)
Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 09:43:37

I have posted about this before and Ihave advertised on gumtree, but I want to amend my ad. So far I have the following:

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Do you want to save money on high accountancy fees?

If the answer is Yes, then I may be able to help you.

I am offering the following services:

- Bookkeeping
- Secretarial services
- VAT returns
- Payroll
- Sage accounts
- Sole traders/Partnerships/Small Limited companies

All the above services can be supplied weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly depending on your needs. I also offer one-off assistance helping you to organise your records and get started.

I am AAT qualified and have over 10 years' experience working for a local Chartered Accountancy firm. I am hardworking and friendly with a vast knowledge of bookkeeping and all that it entails. I prioritise my work and am used to working to deadlines.

I am currently employed and am looking to earn some extra money in my spare time. Ideally i'm looking for work to do from home or at weekends as I have two young children.

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I also want to add a bit about being able to do all the work remotely via post/email/phone, but can't think how to word it.

I am currently only advertising in the local bit of gumtree but am thinking about doing a wider ad, covering say london(i'm in Kent) as really it can all be done without ever meeting IYSWIM. Would you employ a bookeeper that you've never met and not likely to meet, but might be cheaper. I'm just thinking that London costs are higher and I might be cheaper.

Is it also clear from the ad that I am not offering to do final accounts, but the bookeeping part? So in theory you'd still need an accountant but wouldn't have to pay them as much?

All opinions appreciated.

TIAsmile

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 10:45:43

bump

flowerybeanbag Thu 14-Aug-08 10:48:44

As a small business owner who knows nothing about accounting, I wouldn't be at all clear that you wouldn't cover everything required I'm afraid - I'd assume from the ad that I wouldn't need anyone else.

Is there no way you could offer a complete service? I wouldn't want the hassle of needing two different people/companies.

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 10:53:20

fbb, it's a hard one. I'm not a qualified accountant. I am qualified AAT, which is accounting technician, which is more bookeeping and preparing to trial balance.

Lots of people do have a bookkeeper and account. Accountants charge very highly, IMO, for bookkeeping services that, again IMO, could be done much cheaper if you had the right person.

I could do things like preparing profit and loss accounts and tax returns, but i'm not sure i'd be 'allowed' as i am not qualified. does that make any sense?

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 10:59:36

i've found a couple of other ads on gumtree, would they be more obviously bookkeeping only IYSWIM? I won't crib their ads, just looking for inspiration!

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I am an independent bookkeeper with over 10 year’s experience. I endeavour to apply my skills, experience and training in gaining employment within the Accounting Industry.

I can relieve you of an enormous burden by taking care of all your bookkeeping and accounting needs. I stride to work with you so I can gain a full understanding of your business. I then tailor my approach to your requirements so I can provide exactly the service you need.

• Bookkeeping Services
• Payroll Services
• Preparation of VAT Returns
• Preparation of Accounts
• Computer Consultancy & Training

I am proficient in many bookkeeping & payroll packages.

Sage Line 50, Sage MMS, Access Accounts, Quickbooks, Sun, Open Accounts, Viztopia.

Sage Payroll, Iris Payroll & Payroll Manager.

am part-qualified freelance bookkeeper providing services from home based office with capacity for additional clients.

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I provide a professional and reliable service including:

-Accounts to trial balance
-Monthly management accounts
-VAT Returns
-Debtors and creditors reports
-Bank reconciliation
-Petty cash analysis
-Credit Control (with qualitative achievements such as DSO reductions, successful negotiations, cash flow improvements resulting in net interest gains).

If you require any of those services please do not hesitate to contact me.

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flowerybeanbag Thu 14-Aug-08 10:59:38

It does make sense yes. I am extremely clueless about all this and fortunately have a lovely business partner who is looking into all that while I enjoy myself being all creative with the website and touting myself to all and sundry...winkgrin

What you say makes sense, and I'm sure you're right, I'm speaking as an accounts virgin grin

Would you really not be 'allowed'? Or would you not be comfortable or would it be a case of not being able to get professional insurance for final account provision as you don't have the required level of qualification?

I also wouldn't put the stuff about being currently employed and wanting to earn money in spare time, or the bit about wanting to work around your children. Second bit is irrelevant and first bit makes you sound more amateurish and I don't think is important to communicate.

Think of it like a cv. Every piece of information you put in the ad should help you get work. If something won't help you get work, you probably don't need it. I don't think saying you want a bit of extra cash in spare time is going to help you get work.

flowerybeanbag Thu 14-Aug-08 11:02:10

Stuff about working with and understanding your business to tailor service to specific needs is good. I emphasise that myself as I think it's crucial for my business.

Stuff about 'I endeavour to apply skills gaining employment' is a bit rubbish imo.

ShrinkingViolet Thu 14-Aug-08 11:04:37

you're "allowed" to prepare accounts, becasue it's the client who takes responsibility for the filing of them (where needed). For SE clients, they also take the reponsibility for signing their tax return. So in reality "anyone" can prepare accounts.
FWIW, I'm not qualified in either bookkeeping or accoutancy, but i prepare accounts, tax returns for signature, adn so on.
Re clients not in you local area - most of mine are 300 miles away - I've collared the market for a particular industry in a particular area, through word of mouth. Not sure how you woudl word the ad to reflect doign that though - I don't advertise.

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 11:08:56

fbb, thanks for your replies, you are very helpful!

glad it made some sort of sensehmm

I see what you mean about the currently employed/children bit. Thing is I added the bit about children as i had replies wanting someone to work on site during the week, which i can't do. How can I word it so that it's obvious that I want home working IYSWIM?

You can see why i'm posting for advice can't you?! The more you type, the worse the words get and they all come out wrong!

'Would you really not be 'allowed'? Or would you not be comfortable or would it be a case of not being able to get professional insurance for final account provision as you don't have the required level of qualification?'

the answer is i'm not quite sure how it works. I'm sure i'd be allowed as a sole trader can do their own tax returns. Professional insurance is also another thing i'm not sure of. I'm sure I could get some. It would worry me that if I made a mistake then i'd be open to all sorts of issues! and we're all human after all!! I suppose I could have something written down about if you sign the return you are saying it's correct. But tbh that probably wouldn't cover me if it was wrong.

Maybe i'm just over analysing the situation and i should just go with it and see what happenshmm

flowerybeanbag Thu 14-Aug-08 11:12:48

I don't think it needs to be obvious you want homeworking tbh. If people reply wanting someone to be on site and you can't do that, turn away the work. Better to have replies you can't help than to limit the replies you will get.

If you find yourself overwhelmed with too many requests for help and are full to capacity, then you could consider restricting the ad a bit more.

If you're not sure how it works with final accounts you need to find out, so that if someone asks you you can give a confident knowledgeable answer. If I contacted you and you were all 'I'm not really sure, I'll need to find out for you' I'd be a bit hmm does this person know what they're doing/will they be all faffy with my accounts.

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 11:12:51

thanks sv, that makes means that I could pretty much do everything I do at work(and earn more moneywink) without concerning myself with my worries! I am naturally a worry. Drives me nuts!

I have wanted to branch out on my own for so long, and finally staring to do it is scary.

I do have one client already, which is a start. am hoping to be able to give up employment by the time ds starts school. He's only 16 months so gives me enough timegrin

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 11:50:05

Right, I have amended my ad, is this better?

-----------------------------------------

Do you want to save money on high accountancy fees?

If the answer is Yes, then I may be able to help you.

I am offering the following services from my home based office:

- Bookkeeping, including bank reconciliation, petty cash analysis and debtors and
creditors control
- Secretarial services
- VAT returns
- Payroll
- Sage accounts
- Sole traders/Partnerships/Small Limited companies
- I also offer one-off assistance helping you to organise your records and get started.

All the above services can be supplied weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly depending on your needs. I will work with you to gain an understanding of your business so that I can tailor my services to meet your specific needs.

I am AAT qualified and have over 10 years' experience working for a local Chartered Accountancy firm. I am hardworking, friendly and reliable with a vast knowledge of bookkeeping and all that it entails. I prioritise my work and am used to working to deadlines.

Please contact me to discuss your requirements

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flowerybeanbag Thu 14-Aug-08 11:55:39

Yes!

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 11:57:09

grin thanks

and thankyou for all your helpsmile

BirdyArms Thu 14-Aug-08 12:00:21

I think that it sounds good (am an accountant). Just a coulple of things I would change slightly - get rid of the sentence starting 'I endeavour....' and join the first 2 paragraphs together. Also the sentence 'I stride to work with you so I can gain a full understanding of your business' should really be strive rather than stride but I would chage to just 'I work with you....' strive means try but it's something you're definitely going to do rather than try to do.

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 12:03:42

birdyarms, those weren't my ads, just examples i found. I've posted my update one at 11.50.

Thanks for the advice though, it is very much appreciatedsmile

BirdyArms Thu 14-Aug-08 12:06:24

Sorry, was being generally distracted and took ages to post. Your new add looks good - best of luck!

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 12:11:53

oh goodgrin thanks birdyarms, your good luck wish is most appreciated, i'll need itgrin

right of to interact with dc[scared]grin

nellyup Thu 14-Aug-08 12:22:43

I have to say I would look at the first line of your ad and think you were offering cheap accountantcy, not AAT services. It would take me a while to gather that what you were offering was book-keeping (and I understand the difference, many do not).

Your service sounds excellent and I'm sure many businesses (and small charities, which is the background I come from) would be very interested so long as you can make them understand the benefits. What about 'Do you need someone to manage your business's financial records?' or something similar. Then you could put the bit about saving money on high accountancy fees somewhere else because it is a valid point. Or, if you wanted to work on the money saving point as your main 'hook' - 'Did you know that contracting a good book-keeper can reduce your accountancy bills?'

I would also make the second line more positive - instead of 'I may be able to help you' I would say 'I can make your life easier' or some such.

Good luck!

Eddas Thu 14-Aug-08 12:31:54

thansk nellyup

I posted the add on gumtree a little while ago, it comes up when you type in bookkeeper. I will now be offering more accountancy based work as shrinkingviolet made me realise that I can offer that service without worrying. I think i'll just see if anything comes of the ad i've just posted and definately keep your suggestions in mind for next time I update it. On gumtree you need to repost every few weeks anyway. Am just sticking to advertising on there atm as it's free and I want to build up gradually. I'm also hoping that once I get a few clients that they will recommend me, as all tradespeople know lots of other trades people IYSWIM. Personally I think word of mouth is the best recommendation anyone can get. I prefer that myself when looking for tradespeople.

TracyK Wed 20-Aug-08 21:34:32

Where are you based Eddas?

Do you really want to do the work from home? I've got 3 clients and can only realistically do 1 from home - the physical paperwork is a nightmare to pick up and drop off etc.

I'd look at online recruitment sites - it's not all agencies - and then mailshot them.

Also mailshot local companies you know about?

Eddas Thu 21-Aug-08 07:05:57

trace, i'm in Kent. Yep need to do it all from home. I work 2 days a week already so this is just an extra thing smile

There are lots of small business that need help(i see plenty that could do with a good bookkeeper at work!) it's just finding them. I'm not fussed if I only get a few hundred a month, just enough to give us a little more money is all I need, something like an extra 15 hours a month would be good.

TracyK Thu 21-Aug-08 07:15:52

Could you not drop hints/mailshot to the clients you see through work about you doing their stuff?

I'm dropping one of my clients and reducing to one day for the other - the travelling is too much. So i@m going to have to do a mailshot too - to try and get local work.
But I live in a touristy type town and it's just filled with coffee shops and hairdressers - don't think they'd want to pay my hourly rate.

Eddas Thu 21-Aug-08 07:24:01

I can't do that Trace!! I have a clause in my contract for that kinda thinggrin Don't think work would be impressed by my stealing potential work, plus I work about half an hour away from where I live, most clients are futher from my house than that.

I may do a mailshot of places local to me at some point.

I also thought about asking my boss to recommend me if clients need a bookkeeper, but not sure they'd appreciate that. Also i'd be showing that I may leave!

I have also thought about trying to make links with accountants locally to me as they often get work they need/want to pass on, maybe one man band type accountants would be best. Send them my cv sorta thing. Trouble is i wouldn't want them approaching my boss. I'd rather they didn't know I was doing this for the time being.

Such a mindfield trying to get it all just right

TracyK Thu 21-Aug-08 07:32:17

Thats a pity. Is there nothing you could do for your current employer - but from home? If you say you're looking for extra cash - but only from home? And if they say no - then you could suss out how they'd feel about you picking up other clients for home working??

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