Education — Rinette Lagace is a Certified Professional Bookkeeper with IPBC, Institute of Professional Bookkeepers of Canada. She is also a Certified Non-Profit Accounting Professional and a Payroll Compliance Practitioner with the Canadian Payroll Association.
Although a bookkeeper doesn't need to possess a degree or certification to work in Canada, most businesses are interested in hiring an applicant who completed some form of bookkeeping education program. Professional bookkeepers are familiar with the principles of accounting, computer applications, computerized bookkeeping, cost management, income tax, and payroll administration.
Bookkeepers who belong to a professional organization must abide by a code of ethics and pass the membership criteria of a professional organization before they're allowed to join and must maintain a level of ongoing education to remain a part of. Because of this, professional memberships can serve as a strong indicator of a bookkeeper's commitment to their profession.
In the field of bookkeeping, there is no substitute for experience. Bookkeeping processes are very specialized and can vary by sector. Therefore, a great bookkeeper is one with experience in the industry, who can understand essential business operations and can identify ways to simplify processes and eliminate waste.
The bookkeeping industry is one that is constantly evolving due to changing technologies. Today, most accounting processes are completed using computerized bookkeeping or accounting software programs. Great bookkeepers commit to keeping up with the latest technology and can identify possibilities to save time and money by automating processes.
Bookkeepers are privy to a great deal of sensitive financial information, so it is essential that they possess high ethical standards. Great bookkeepers are discreet, professional and able to keep the information confidential. A skilled bookkeeper should also be able to provide solid references who will vouch for their professional character. (See testimonials below)
Bookkeepers must work with people at every level of an organization. They have time defined tasks requiring to be met on time, so an individual who can communicate their needs effectively can be an invaluable asset to a business. If the bookkeeper doesn't understand something, a strong bookkeeper is willing to ask for clarification, sooner rather than later. Great bookkeepers also need to be able to communicate large financial information in a way that is useful and meaningful to multiple stakeholders.
"loyal, forgiving, smart, and no problem is too great. You also accept when expectations don't turn out. A rare and beautiful quality!" — Deborah Conner
"when I first met you I could tell you had a lot of knowledge in accounting and a great personality to work around". — Grant Starrs
"Favourite part…you make it look easy, and you are confident in your abilities, which makes me feel good about the fact that I have you helping me with my bookkeeping" — Tammi York
"Working with Rinette Lagace is very professional. Honest & keep your bookkeeping confidential" — Liz Calacal
"dig until you find the information you need and if you need more clarity you come back and ask." — Deborah Conner