Bookkeepers maintain and evaluate records of financial transactions in account books and computerised accounting systems.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed. Around one in four workers have Year 11 and 10 as their highest education level. Even with a qualification, further experience or on-the-job training is sometimes required.

Tasks

  • keeping financial records, and maintaining and balancing accounts using manual and computerised systems
  • monitoring cash flow and lines of credit
  • preparing and producing financial statements, budget and expenditure reports and analyses using account books, ledgers and accounting software packages
  • preparing invoices, purchase orders and bank deposits
  • reconciling accounts against monthly bank statements
  • verifying recorded transactions and reporting irregularities to management
  • may be required to prepare forms reporting business tax entitlements and obligations such as the amount of goods and services tax paid and collected

Job Titles

  • Bookkeeper
  • Bookkeeper

    Specialisations: Financial Administration Officer

Fast Facts

  • $1,000 Weekly Pay
  • 107,700 workers Employment Size
  • Decline Future Growth
  • Lower skill Skill level rating
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment
  • 33.2% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 37.7 hours Average full-time
  • 49 years Average age
  • 90.3% female Gender Share

The number of Bookkeepers fell over the past 5 years and is expected to fall over the next 5 years:
from 107,700 in 2017 to 104,300 by 2022.
There are likely to be around 39,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created.

  • Size: This is a very large occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2017.
  • Location: Bookkeepers work in most regions of Australia.
  • Industries: They work in many industries such as Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; Construction; and Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $1,000 per week (below the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • Full-time: Less than half work full-time (33.2%, fewer than the all jobs average of 68.4%), showing there are many opportunites to work part-time.
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 37.7 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 49 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years). Many workers are 45 years or older (64.1%).
  • Gender: 90.3% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2017 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2022.
YearNumber of Workers
2007129800
2008130900
2009129300
2010116300
2011114800
2012113500
2013113200
2014106900
2015100000
201699900
2017107700
2022104300

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsBookkeepersAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings10001230

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services26.6
Construction17.5
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing6.8
Education and Training6.2
Other Industries42.9

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateBookkeepersAll Jobs Average
NSW24.331.6
VIC32.726.2
QLD19.619.7
SA6.36.7
WA13.710.8
TAS1.82.0
NT1.01.1
ACT0.61.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketBookkeepersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.4-5.25.2
20-241.5-9.99.9
25-3414.8-23.623.6
35-4419.2-21.721.7
45-5430.0-20.820.8
55-5911.6-8.88.8
60-6411.0-6.06.0
65 and Over11.5-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationBookkeepersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate6.6-8.68.6
Bachelor degree20-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma13.2-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV18.5-18.918.9
Year 1214.4-18.718.7
Years 11 & 1022.3-17.717.7
Below Year 105-8.18.1

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed.
Around one in four workers have Year 11 and 10 as their highest education level. Even with a qualification, further experience or on-the-job training is sometimes required.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Financial Services VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Bookkeepers who work well in a team, are flexible and adaptable yet can also work independently and self-manage.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Clerical

    80% Important

    Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.

  2. Mathematics

    74% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  3. English Language

    73% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  4. Economics and Accounting

    70% Important

    Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.

  5. Customer and Personal Service

    69% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 43-3031.00 - Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Getting Information

    88% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  2. Interacting With Computers

    88% Important

    Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

  3. Processing Information

    83% Important

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

  4. Documenting/Recording Information

    79% Important

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  5. Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work

    76% Important

    Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 43-3031.00 - Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks.

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