Writing a CV or resume as a bookkeeper is all about showcasing your skills, experience, and ability to handle financial records with precision and trustworthiness. This article is designed to guide you through the process of creating a CV or resume that effectively highlights your qualifications and experience in bookkeeping.
We’ll provide straightforward tips on what to include, how to format your information, and the best ways to demonstrate your expertise. Plus, we’ll share some examples to help you understand how these tips can be applied in real-life scenarios. Whether you’re a seasoned bookkeeper or just starting out, this article will help you create a CV or resume that stands out to employers.
- 1 Read The Job Description / Advert
- 2 Research The Company
- 3 Find A Good CV Template
- 4 Write 2 Or 3 Bullet Points As A ‘Professional Summary’
- 5 Detail Your Employment History
- 6 Detail Your Education History
- 7 CV Structure
- 8 WHAT NOT TO DO
- 9 Bookkeeper CV Tips – Recap
- 10 Bookkeeper CV Sample
Read The Job Description / Advert
The first step is, of course, to read the job description. We need to know what the firm is looking for so that we can properly highlight these characteristics in our CV. So read back over the job description and try to pinpoint the important points. A lot of times a firm will call things “required”; if you see this, you need to make sure you include that in your CV. Similarly, if certain things are repeated throughout the advert, this indicates they are of high importance, so we will want to make sure our CV shows that as well.
When performing this analysis, take care to copy the ‘exact’ words and phrases that are being used by the hiring manager. We will want to pepper these into our CV later.
Bookkeeper Job Description Example
Bookkeeper Position Available
We are seeking a detail-oriented and experienced Bookkeeper to join our dynamic team. The ideal candidate will be responsible for maintaining accurate financial records and reports, ensuring the efficient operation of our accounting and financial activities. This role requires a high level of accuracy, reliability, and proficiency in bookkeeping practices.
- Manage all aspects of day-to-day bookkeeping and accounting processes including but not limited to: A/P, A/R, payroll, general ledger entries, and bank reconciliations.
- Prepare accurate monthly financial statements, including income statements and balance sheets.
- Ensure compliance with all necessary tax filings and documentation.
- Conduct regular ledger maintenance and thorough financial reporting and analysis.
- Collaborate with external auditors as needed, providing necessary information for annual audits.
- Monitor financial transactions and reports, processing expenses, and ensuring accuracy in all financial documentation.
- Develop and implement organized filing systems for all financial documents.
- Assist with budget preparation and financial forecasting, providing insights and recommendations based on financial trends.
- Utilize accounting software to maintain records and process transactions efficiently.
- Proven experience as a Bookkeeper or in a similar role.
- Strong knowledge of bookkeeping practices and principles.
- Proficiency in accounting software (e.g., QuickBooks, Xero, Sage).
- Excellent skills in managing spreadsheets and databases.
- Strong attention to detail and ability to maintain accuracy in financial records.
- Excellent organizational and time-management skills.
- Ability to handle confidential information.
- Good communication skills, both written and verbal.
- AAT qualification or equivalent is preferred.
What We Offer:
- A dynamic and supportive work environment.
- Opportunities for professional growth and development.
- Competitive compensation package, commensurate with experience.
- Flexible working arrangements to support work-life balance.
This role is ideal for someone who is passionate about bookkeeping and thrives in a fast-paced environment. If you have a strong background in bookkeeping and are looking for an opportunity to advance your career, we would love to hear from you.
Research The Company
Time to put on your detective hat and do some research on your target company. Look at their website, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms. You are looking for any piece of intel that will give you the leg up.
- Find out about recent work/projects they have undertaken or will be embarking on (highlight your experience in these areas on your CV)
- Find out what software/processes they use and make sure you include your proficiency in them in your CV
- Learn what interview questions you might expect should you make it that far
See if you know anyone who works there and/or connect (LinkedIn) with people ahead of the interview. A little nepotism could never hurt, and you might be able to glean more information about the role/hiring process in the meantime.
Find A Good CV Template
When selecting a CV template, it’s essential to opt for a simple design and structure. Not only are straightforward layouts more compatible with Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), but they also make it easier for recruiters and hiring managers to quickly identify and understand key details. A clutter-free and organized CV ensures that your most important information stands out, facilitating a smoother review process for potential employers.
Write 2 Or 3 Bullet Points As A ‘Professional Summary’
A handy approach is to craft three sentences: the first highlighting your qualifications and experience, the second showcasing your biggest professional achievement, and the third detailing your most recent experience.
Bookkeeper Professional Summary Example
- With over 10 years of experience in bookkeeping, holding a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and a Certified Bookkeeper designation. Proficient in managing financial records and accounts using QuickBooks, Xero, and Microsoft Excel, specializing in accounts receivable, accounts payable, and payroll processing.
- Most notable achievement includes the successful reorganization of the accounts receivable system at Stellar Authority, leading to a 30% reduction in outstanding receivables within the first year and significantly improving cash flow.
- Recently managed a comprehensive budget of $4 million at Stratos Enterprises, overseeing all financial transactions, streamlining payroll processes for a team of 150 employees, and preparing accurate monthly financial reports for management review, contributing to a 10% increase in overall financial efficiency.
Detail Your Employment History
Begin by listing your employment history in reverse chronological order, starting with your most recent role. This allows potential employers to see your recent experience upfront, which holds greater value. Keep in mind that brevity is key.
As you go further back in time, reduce the level of detail to ensure your CV doesn’t exceed two pages. Employers are less likely to read lengthy CVs.
When writing about your responsibilities on your CV, focus on how you’ve excelled in those roles, especially as a Bookkeeper. Instead of simply stating “Handled accounts payable and receivable,” you could say, “Efficiently managed accounts payable and receivable, reducing outstanding balances by 25% within six months through improved processes and diligent follow-up.”
This approach not only shows that you were in charge of these tasks but also demonstrates your ability to make a positive impact, highlighting your skills in reducing debts and improving financial health. This method gives a clearer picture of your capabilities and achievements to potential employers.
Detail Your Education History
Keep your CV concise, aiming for a two-page limit. The education section can often be streamlined.
Highlight the most relevant qualifications. For instance, if you have a degree, your A-levels become less significant. Similarly, if you’re in the U.S., having an MBA overshadows your high school GPA.
Unless an older educational milestone is crucial for the job or highly pertinent, focus on showcasing your Bachelor’s degree, post-graduate studies, or professional certifications. If you lack these, mention your latest qualifications. Remember, having a Master’s suggests you’ve finished school, so no need to state the obvious. Only include your educational background if it’s pertinent to the job.
Tactically structure your CV to the ‘most wanted’ attributes of the job description. For example, if the job description values “qualified”, then place your qualifications first; if they want someone with RECENT experience, put your last job up top. If they want multiple years of experience, highlight your tenure.
We always recommend that you have a Professional Summary up top (after your name/contact info), as it will be the first thing that anyone reads. As discussed earlier, this should be tailored towards the job advert and showcase your experience and skills in what the employer is looking for.
A fairly typical structure would go:
- Name and contact info
- Professional Summary
- Current (or most recent employment)
- Education & Professional Qualifications
- Employment History
WHAT NOT TO DO
Now that we’ve discussed what you should be including in your CV, let’s look at some things that you should avoid doing.
- Do not include personal history or likes. Employers are not going to care about your hobbies, so unless you have some inside information that the hiring manager only hires people who play a particular sport, for example, then leave your extracurricular activities off your CV. This does not extend to things like volunteer or charity work. Definitely include that if you have the space.
- Do not list your skillset and the tools/applications you have experience with. It takes up valuable space and is often obvious (Skilled in Excel…?). Instead, include these in your achievements section (Example: “Used Asana to manage and coordinate tasks for a remote team of 25 members”).
- Do not include references or “references available on request”. If employers want a reference, they will ask you for them; otherwise, this is just wasted space on your CV.
- Do not include a photo of yourself unless specifically asked. In many countries, including the UK and US, you should not include a photo of yourself on your CV/resume. Companies don’t want you to do it, as it opens them up to liability, and there is absolutely nothing for you to gain by doing so – plus, you are making it easier for firms to discriminate against you, either implicitly or explicitly.
- Do not use any fancy graphic or artistic CV format. Most CVs come in a standard format, allowing Application Tracking Software, recruiters and hiring managers to easily pick out the key pieces of information they need quickly based on their experience. If you throw them a CV in an artistic format, they are more likely to get annoyed and throw your application away. This is not a situation where standing out is good. You want your skills/experience to be noted, not your CV format.
- Do not include your previous salaries. This will severely impact your negotiation abilities down the line.
Bookkeeper CV Tips – Recap
Let’s recap what we’ve discussed so far:
Understand the Role and Tailor Your CV
🎯 Before you start, make sure you understand what employers are looking for in a Bookkeeper. Tailor your CV to highlight relevant skills and experiences that match the job description.
Highlight Relevant Qualifications and Certifications
📚 Include any qualifications and certifications that are relevant to bookkeeping. This could be a degree in accounting or finance, or certifications like Certified Bookkeeper (CB) or AAT qualifications.
Showcase Your Experience with Specific Examples
💼 Instead of just listing job duties, use specific examples to show how you’ve excelled in your roles. For instance, “Improved invoice processing efficiency by 30% through the implementation of a new software system.”
Demonstrate Your Proficiency with Bookkeeping Software
💻 Mention your proficiency with bookkeeping software like QuickBooks, Xero, or Sage. This shows potential employers that you’re familiar with the tools of the trade.
Quantify Your Achievements
📈 Use numbers to quantify your achievements. For example, “Managed a budget of $50,000” or “Reduced outstanding receivables by 20% within one year.”
Keep It Clear and Concise
🔍 Use clear, simple language and keep your CV concise. Aim for two pages or less, making sure that every word adds value to your application.
Proofread for Errors
✅ Double-check your CV for spelling and grammatical errors. A well-written, error-free CV reflects your attention to detail, a crucial skill for a Bookkeeper.
Bookkeeper CV Sample
Below is an example CV from someone with a number of years experience in the field. For an editable .DOCX version, click here.