Keeping the Books

Bookkeeping as a Career, How to Become a Bookkeeper, What does a Bookkeeper Earn? Salaries and more on

Complete our Salary Survey and Win a Wage!


Bookkeeping as a career for a young woman could lead to a very satisfactory outcome. However, an individual without any prior work experience looking for employment in a company as a bookkeeper must be willing to work her way up the ranks. 

Learn the books 

According to recruitment specialist Ashely Gregory, “the new generation of young people entering the job market today are looking for a good balance between work and play, where work skills are complemented socially, in an workplace that is upbeat”. A vibrant company with an opening for a candidate beginning at entry level position would be likely to offer such an environment. Working as a data capturer, or a debtors or creditors clerk (handling a cash book) and then perhaps studying part-time for a diploma or certificate, would be the starting point for an aspiring bookkeeper. “Tertiary education such as a certificate in bookkeeping, or a B. Comm. Finance, together with proven experience in the accounts department is necessary to proceed to the role of bookkeeper,” says Gregory and “adding on pay-roll skills would be a huge advantage”.

Duties and benefits

Functions that a bookkeeper would be expected to perform within the accounts department would be managing creditors, debtors, the cash book, journal entries, supervising of account clerks, petty cash reconciliation and preparation of books to trial balance / balance sheet. Reports to either the financial manager or the accountant would be a big part of the financial management requirements.

In working environments today, particularly with young recruits entering the job sector who may be more status driven, perks such as allowances for electronic equipment and fuel may be part of the package rather than medical aid or pension funds. Fifteen days leave a year is available and may be taken over the festive season at the end of each year.


Job skills as a bookkeeper can reach a “ceiling” with limited opportunities for advancement within an organisation, but, says Gregory “could present wonderful opportunities for a young mother wanting to experience the freedom of working from home. With bookkeeping skills acquired through company experience, she can enjoy the advantages of working from home, and manage the accounting books of several companies”. 

Read more

Make sure you are earning a decent salary by taking our Salary Check. And fill in our Salary Survey - you may win a prize!