Resume Template: Bookkeeper

by | Resume Templates, Resume Templates: Finance

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Every business needs a good bookkeeper, and every good bookkeeper needs a bookkeeper resume. 

On a day-to-day basis, there is financial data to be processed and accounted for across businesses of all sizes. So bookkeeping is an essential service that will always be in demand.

But how do you compete with all the other candidates vying for those bookkeeping jobs?

What will set you apart?

A well-written bookkeeper resume that highlights your strengths and skills is the best way to impress a potential employer and get that bookkeeping job you’ve been looking for.

In your resume, you’ll need to demonstrate just why you’re the ideal candidate for the position.

And we’re here to show you how!

Summary

  1. Resume Template
  2. Formatting
  3. Writing Your Resume Summary
  4. Areas of Expertise
  5. Writing Your Work Experience
  6. Writing Your Education Section
  7. Additional Sections
  8. Resume Points to Remember
  9. Resume “Don’ts” to Remember
  10. Some Helpful Tools

Let’s begin with a sample bookkeeper resume to demonstrate how all the resume pieces fit together. Then we will break each section down to really drill into how to write the best bookkeeper resume you possibly can.

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Bookkeeper Resume (Text Version)

CONTACT INFO:

Fred William Kirkland
[email protected]
(502) 442-5832
Louisville, KY 40018
linkedin.com/fredkirkland

SUMMARY STATEMENT

Bookkeeper: Dependable Bookkeeper with exceptional performance history of accuracy and attention to small details. Experienced with both small business and retail bookkeeping, known for completing tasks correctly and in a timely manner. Excellent with mathematical and analytical skills, quickly computing numbers, and preparing books for taxes.

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

  • MS Office
  • Quickbooks
  • Data Entry
  • Financial Projections
  • Inventory Management
  • Organization
  • Communication
  • Troubleshooting
  • Detail-Oriented
  • Efficiency

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE:

Paige Clothing
General Bookkeeper | Louisville, KY | March 2016–Present

  • Maintain ledger with daily entries
  • Manage customer accounts and billing
  • Organize business financial records for tax preparer
  • Check inventory lists against inventory delivered
  • Project business annual profit and loss

Meek’s Hardware
General Bookkeeper | Louisville, KY | January 2014–January 2016

  • Utilized Quickbooks software to balance books daily
  • Entered inventory data into business account system with 99% accuracy
  • Curated construction contractor accounts
  • Monitored payroll for employees
  • Prepared quarterly tax reports

Foster’s Equine Supply
Assistant Bookkeeper | Louisville, KY | June 2011–December 2013

  • Evaluated and reconciled all business accounts
  • Tracked sales and prepared financial statements
  • Kept client accounts in order and billed clients as needed
  • Increased accounting efficiency of business by 10% via new workflow implementation

EDUCATION/CERTIFICATION

Bachelor of Science in Accounting
University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
Class of 2011

Formatting

As a bookkeeper, you must be highly organized and understand how to sort and manage data.

You can apply these skills to your bookkeeping resume. There is a structure to follow and data to organize.

So let’s begin!

Since we live in a competitive job market, many companies now use scanning bots to process resumes. Bots search for relevant keywords and correct language to determine whether or not your bookkeeper resume makes it to a hiring manager’s desk.

So one of our priorities will be formatting your resume in a way that will satisfy these scan bots.

When and if your resume meets a hiring manager, he or she will spend an average of six seconds looking it over.

Not much time, is it?

That’s why we need to help you write a bookkeeper resume that is sure to impress right from the get-go.

A good way to achieve that is through using reverse chronological order for your layout.

This technique puts your most recent position first, so a hiring manager will gain an immediate idea of what you’ve been up to in your professional life.

You’ll then work backward in time, listing the various jobs you’ve held.

Another important aspect of formatting is font selection. You always want to use a simple font that is easy to read.

Nothing fancy or outlandish.

Organization is very important. So make good use of your white spaces. Make sure your columns and lists are evenly spaced and pleasing to the eye.

Readability is the key objective here!

Start With Your Bookkeeper Resume Summary

Your summary is a crucial part of your resume.

It is your first impression, your elevator pitch, your chance to really grab the attention of the reader.

In 2–3 sentences, you’ll need to sum up what makes you the ideal candidate for the job.

So what elements make for an effective summary?

In short, your summary should be a brief selection of your best attributes as a bookkeeper.

But your summary can’t be too general.

You need to really prove your value.

Pro Tip: Keep in mind that your summary is not a statement of objective. While it used to be common practice to start a resume with an objective, it is no longer acceptable. In our fast-paced job market, employers want to see results. They want to know what skills you have right off the bat.

Let’s breakdown the mechanics of an effective bookkeeper resume summary with some examples:

Yes!

Dependable Bookkeeper with exceptional performance history of accuracy and attention to small details. Experienced with both small business and retail bookkeeping, known for completing tasks correctly and in a timely manner. Excellent with mathematical and analytical skills, quickly computing numbers, and preparing books for taxes.

No!

Bookkeeper who is good with detail. I have worked for small businesses and can complete tasks on time. Can do taxes. Am looking for a bookkeeping position in an easy-going environment.

What makes the first example work as a summary?

The summary gets off to a running start by qualifying “bookkeeper” with “dependable.” This candidate has a great performance history. In what? In accuracy and attention to small details.

Potential employers want to see descriptions like this, to know not only your job title but also what you’ve brought to that title.

What kind of bookkeeper are you?

The summary uses power words like “completing” and “preparing” to convey action and competence.

The second example falls short of being an effective summary.

But why?

While we get the gist that the candidate is competent, the language of the summary is lacking both in detail and power.

There is not much here to make an impression. Just the barest of information.

The summary also includes a statement of objective, which is seen as unprofessional.

Remember, they are evaluating you.

Key Accomplishments/ Skills & Qualifications

Now that you’ve impressed with your resume summary, you need to drive the point home with a section that highlights your Areas of Expertise and Key Accomplishments.

This list will be different for each candidate.

If you have experience in a certain area that puts you above your peers, you need to highlight it!

Your Areas of Expertise section should be formatted as a bulleted list.

Key Accomplishments/Areas of Expertise

  • MS Office
  • Quickbooks
  • Data Entry
  • Financial Projections
  • Inventory Management
  • Organization
  • Communication
  • Troubleshooting
  • Detail-Oriented
  • Efficiency

Easy to read and easy to write!

Now all you have to do is assemble your list of hard skills and soft skills.

What’s the difference?

Hard skills are skills that relate directly to your profession or line of work. They can be skills you learned on the job or in the classroom.

As long as they are relevant, list them.

Are you a critical thinker?

Are you a leader?

How’s your attitude in the office?

These qualities are soft skills.

So think about yourself and how you being you influences your role as a bookkeeper.

Pro Tip: Perhaps you’ve never defined and written out your skillset before. No problem! Try saying to yourself out loud the things you are good at. Remember you are looking for skills relevant to the position you’re seeking.

Writing Your Work Experience

Summary. Check! Areas of Expertise. Check!

Now it’s time to develop the heart of your bookkeeper resume:

Your work experience section.

Now you need to really show them what you’re made of with your work history.

Unless you’re just starting out or have little work history, this section will take up the most space on your resume.

So how do you start putting it all together?

Reverse chronological order should be your layout method here.

List your most recent job or position first. That way, a hiring manager will not have to search to find what you’ve been doing in the present. Your most relevant qualities will be in the foreground.

After your first entry, move backward to your first job of relevance.

No need to include everything you’ve done in your working life. Mowing lawns as a teen is not relevant to bookkeeping.

There are exceptions of course, such as switching careers or being a new graduate. In such cases, you’ll probably need to fill out your work experience with whatever jobs you’ve held in the past.

Be sure to include:

  • The company name
  • Where the company is located
  • What job you performed there

Include dates of employment as well, unless you’re trying to hide gaps between jobs or brief periods of employment.

However, you will probably be asked about missing dates in an interview setting. Potential employers want to know about gaps, or why you held a job for only a short time. Be prepared to answer such questions.

After you’ve written down the basics of your former position, it’s time to list your day-to-day functions in a bulleted list.

Using 3–5 points, talk about your roles and responsibilities in the position.

Power words will be your friend as you write this part. Use them to help bring zest and a sense of action to your descriptions.

See the examples below:

Yes!

Paige ClothingGeneral BookkeeperLouisville, KYMarch 2016–Present
• Maintain ledger with daily entries
• Manage customer accounts and billing
• Organize business financial records for tax preparer
• Check inventory lists against inventory delivered

No!

Paige ClothingGeneral BookkeeperLouisville, KYMarch 2016–Present
• Make daily entries
• Customer accounts and billing
• Make documents ready for tax preparer

The first example conveys a high level of competence in the position. Power words help emanate confidence and initiative.

The five points are just detailed enough to give the reader a well-rounded idea of the candidate’s functions in the role of General Bookkeeper.

So what’s wrong with the second example?

With only 3 vague points and no effective power words, the entry is weak and isn’t going to make a good impression.

What’s more, the heading is missing some information, including dates.

Your work experience section is an opportunity to make your skillset shine.

So don’t sell yourself short by rushing through it or leaving out important details!

PRO TIP: Power word selection can be lots of fun. Consider the roles you took on at your job and think of words that effectively describe those actions. Also, it helps to try and think of power words that are relevant to your field.

More About Bots

If the company you’re seeking employment at is using Applicant Tracking Software (ATS), you should prioritize making your bookkeeper resume acceptable to scanning bots.

One such way is to use a paragraph format instead of bullet points for your work experience section.

So you’d go from this:

Paige ClothingGeneral BookkeeperLouisville, KYMarch 2016–Present

  • Maintain ledger with daily entries
  • Manage customer accounts and billing
  • Organize business financial records for tax preparer
  • Check inventory lists against inventory delivered

To something like this:

Paige ClothingGeneral BookkeeperLouisville, KYMarch 2016–Present

Maintain ledger with daily entries, calculate gains and list transaction notes. Manage customer accounts and billing details. Organize business financial records and submit them to tax preparer. Check inventory lists against inventory delivered and make note of missing or extra items.   

Consider using a few bullet points to highlight special achievements or responsibilities:

Paige ClothingGeneral BookkeeperLouisville, KYMarch 2016–Present

Maintain ledger with daily entries, calculate gains and list transaction notes. Manage customer accounts and billing details. Organize business financial records and submit them to tax preparer. Check inventory lists against inventory delivered and make note of missing or extra items.   

  • Project business annual profit and loss
  • Achieved a year-end bonus for exceptional performance

The paragraph format will allow you to really load your descriptions with keywords, which an ATS will love.

But there is always the reality that, should your resume come before the eyes of a hiring manager, the paragraph format is going to be a downside.

Bullet lists are just easier for a human to read. 

So unless you’re very concerned about pleasing an ATS, we suggest you stick with bullet points alone. 

Writing Your Education Section

For many, education has played a vital role in skill development and career path.

Any employer will want to know how much education you’ve received and at what level(s).

So it’s quite important that you include an education section on your bookkeeper resume.

List your highest level of education.

Example: Highschool Diploma, Bachelor’s Degree, Master’s Degree, etc.

Now work backward.

Depending on your situation, it may or may not be necessary to include your highschool degree.

Remember to include the name of the institution you received your degree(s) from.

Also list any minor degrees or certifications.

Add your GPA as well if you happen to be a recent grad. It will help build credibility until you get more established in your field.

Example:

Bachelor of Science in Accounting
University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
GPA: 3.6
Class of 2011

You can also list any workshops, conferences, or programs you’ve completed to grow your knowledge.

Example:

  • “Keeping the Books,” Professional Workshop, Columbus, OH
  • “The Science of Bookkeeping,” Online Seminar

Possible Sections to Include

It may prove necessary to include an additional section on your bookkeeper resume. Sometimes we have a special accomplishment or achievement that does not fit with the other content.

Here are some ideas:

  • Awards and honors
  • Publications
  • Noteworthy Projects
  • Social Media Influence
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Hobbies/Interests
  • Volunteer Work

What if You Have No Experience?

We’ve all been there.

Maybe you’re in the process of changing careers.

Perhaps you’re just beginning your professional life.

Whatever your situation, trying to find employment without relevant work experience can be daunting.

Your bookkeeper resume still needs a great summary. So you need to concentrate on what skills you do have.

You can also use alternate formatting.

Try moving your education section up on the page so that it follows your summary.

Your education is going to be your strongest asset if you lack experience in the field you’re pursuing.

Additionally, when creating your work experience section, try and tailor your bullet points to be as relevant as possible to the position you’re applying for.

Ask yourself questions like these:

What skills do I possess that could help me as a bookkeeper?

Have I ever held a position that required organization and recordkeeping?

Have I ever had a job that involved problem-solving and forward-thinking?

You probably have more relevant experience points than you realize.

So take the time to really consider your work history.

Bookkeeper Resume Points to Remember

Here are a few more things to point out before you’re ready to get rolling on your resume!

Always include a way to be contacted

It’s surprisingly easy to overlook. So jot down your LinkedIn profile and email address. Whatever is the best way to reach you.

Utilize space well

You have one page, so use of space is important. You need to make an impression quickly. That’s why your summary comes first, followed by your Areas of Expertise, your Work History, and your Education.

Power words work

Power words convey power. It’s quite simple. Strong language will really help sell your skills to potential employers

Always Avoid

Not to end on a low note, but here are a few things to definitely avoid as you’re drafting your resume.

Don’t use first-person language

No first-person language. This means no “me” or “I,” especially in your summary and bullet points.

Don’t exceed one page

You want your bookkeeper resume to be short, sweet, and relevant. Everything you need should fit nicely onto a single page.

Don’t repeat yourself

Repeating yourself is never a good thing, neither in writing nor in speaking. So keep your language fresh and remember to utilize power words.

Some Helpful Tools

Bookkeeper Power Words

  • Maintain
  • Organize
  • Project
  • Entered
  • Monitored
  • Evaluated
  • Increased
  • Manage
  • Check
  • Utilized
  • Curated
  • Prepared
  • Tracked
  • Kept

Skills List

Hard Skills Soft Skills
MS Office Organization
Quickbooks Communication
Data Entry Troubleshooting
Financial Projection Detail-oriented
Inventory Management Efficiency