What is the Hype?
A bookkeeper does not need a four year degree to get a job. Bookkeepers record the financial transactions for companies, ranging from their sales to their bills and accounts receivable. That is where the hype comes in, anyone can become a bookkeeper in as little as twelve weeks, for the cost of one small test.
Besides a great career, discussed later on, you would gain basic financial literacy. This would already set you on a path to making your money work for you, instead of you working for your money. Financial literacy is not taught in primary school, unless you elect to take it, which means you also gain a leg up in life skills.
How Can I Get Started?
All it takes to get started is learning the basics of bookkeeping, which one can do for free, here, or here for as little as $10. Accounting Coach, the first link in the previous sentence, offers a free course that takes you over everything you should know to become a bookkeeper.
The course has an outline of every subject it covers, so if you already have some basic knowledge you can skip over it. There is a pro version for $49 or $99 that offers additional features, such as a quiz, flashcards, and some other goodies. As I am not an affiliate for them I will let you look at the packages and decide whether you would like to pay for the course features or not.
The second link is to Ashworth College, they are an accredited university, and included in the cost of the course is a certification to become a bookkeeper. Given the accreditation, when I take the exam, I will be using the second link. They each teach the same thing, so if you want to start learning for free to see if you like it, use the first link. However, if you love finances, or math, I would use the second link. I am not an affiliate for Ashworth College either.
Once you complete the either of the courses, all that is left is taking the certification exam.
What is the Pay?
According to payscale.com, before bonuses and commissions bookkeepers earn an average of $16.72 an hour. The work week is usually 40+ hours or less depending on where you decide to work.
Bookkeepers may also go on a salary wage of about $42000 a year starting out. Obviously wages fluctuate based on region and how you negotiate your pay. The more experience you gain, the more money you could earn.
Where Would I Work?
Bookkeepers have a few options in selecting their work environment. They can work in an office, at a bookkeeping or regular company. This means having a boss and having guaranteed work year round. This route is great for anyone new to bookkeeping or getting their foot in the door. A certificate is like a college degree, it just shows you are willing to put in the work necessary to get the job done. Experience is how clients and companies know you are hireable.
For example, let us take person A who has four years of bookkeeping experience and person B who has no experience, but a certification, who would you hire? That is the reality of the world we live in, most jobs require experience to start in.
However, there are freelancing opportunities for bookkeepers as well. As with any freelance job, it will require you to get out there and find the clients initially. Once you are established clients will start coming to you. The other benefit of being a freelance bookkeeper is you can work from home in your pjs. How awesome is that?
Another reason I am hopping on this train now, is that it is a growing market. As more companies begin emerging, the demand for bookkeepers also grows.