How to Become a Bookkeeper in Wisconsin

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How to Become a Bookkeeper in Wisconsin

Delving into the realm of bookkeeping unveils an intriguing profession closely aligned with accounting.

Yet, despite their shared traits, it’s vital to note that they’re distinct disciplines.

If you’re considering a career as a bookkeeper in Wisconsin, it’s essential to grasp the fundamentals of this role.

So, continue reading this article for valuable insights.

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How to Become a Bookkeeper – Step by Step

In this state, obtaining a license is highly recommended for aspiring bookkeepers.

This credential enhances your credibility with potential employers.

You have two pathways to licensure:

  • Through formal education
  • Through practical experience

Both routes offer similar steps, so you can opt for the one that suits you best.

Step 1 – Earn Your High School Diploma

To embark on a career as a bookkeeper, you must fulfill the requirement of graduating from high school and earning your diploma.

If finishing high school poses challenges, you have the alternative of pursuing a GED.

Nevertheless, possessing that diploma is a fundamental step before progressing to the next stage of your journey.

Step 2 Education – Earn a Degree

Thinking about going further in your education is a clever choice.

Getting a degree can make you better at what you do and open doors to nicer jobs in the future.

Many companies like hiring people who’ve had some schooling.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), going for a degree is a smart move for those who enjoy learning.

You’ve got different degrees to pick from:

  • Associate’s Degree
  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Master’s Degree

Even if you’re not planning on a master’s degree, it’s helpful to know what it’s all about.

Now, let’s check out the bookkeeping programs offered in Wisconsin.

Step 3 Education – Train on-the-job

In the beginning, training lays the groundwork, and getting off to a good start is really important.

You’ll spend six months learning on the job.

During this period, your main goal will be grasping how things work, even if you won’t be doing them immediately.

If you choose education, getting good at using the company’s software is crucial.

You’ll also become skilled at thoroughly reviewing the company’s transactions.

Step 2 Practice – Gain Experience

You should know that there are two certifications you can pick.

These are as follows:

  • You can pursue a license from the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB), for which you need 24 months of experience.
  • Or, you can get a license issued by the National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers (NACPB), for one year of experience.

Step 3 Practice – Earn the Credentials

These certifications are accredited and can be used all over the US.

But you need to take and pass four exams before you get any certification.

However, if you want both of them, you will have to pass no less than eight exams.

The last 2 of each set of 4 tests are open-book, making everything easier.

These exams are available at any Prometric center near you.

Keep in mind you can get certified while you are still studying.

The bookkeeper certifications remain current for one year, after which you will need to update them.

In order to do that, you have to attend 24 more hours of class.

Bookkeeping Programs in Wisconsin

It’s time to see where you can find training programs in this state.

Marquette University

Marquette University’s College of Business offers a Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) that you can finish in just one year.

This 30-credit program allows you to study either full-time or part-time and meets the 150-semester hour requirement for CPA licensure.

You will get technical, practical, and theoretical accounting skills by attending classes such as:

  • Advanced Corporate Issues
  • Auditing:
    • Ethical,
    • Legal,
    • Professional
  • Reporting
  • Advanced Cost Management
  • Analysis of Corporate Financial Statements

To fulfill business elective requirements, students also take courses from the MBA program.

While students from any academic background can join the program, having an undergraduate degree in accounting is recommended.

However, if you have an undergraduate GPA of 3.25 with certain business courses, you may be able to waive the testing requirement.

School Name Address
Marquette University 1250 W Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53233
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Bookkeeper Salary in Wisconsin

Of course, after you finish training, you probably want to know how much you can earn.

In Wisconsin, bookkeepers make an annual wage of around $43,788.

Where you live and how much experience you have will also impact your earnings.

You should look at the following table to see the cities with higher salaries.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Almena $46,625
Frederic $46,625
Centuria $46,625
Somerset $46,625
Wheeler $46,625
Ellsworth $45,827
Elmwood $45,339
Hager City $45,251
Barronett $44,497
Bay City $44,231

Regional Salary in Wisconsin

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Appleton, WI1,430$45,160$21.71$59,600$32,370
Eau Claire, WI1,120$43,210$20.77$57,340$29,270
Fond du Lac, WI510$43,410$20.87$56,890$28,850
Green Bay, WI2,090$44,250$21.27$59,170$30,810
Janesville-Beloit, WI940$43,380$20.86$56,570$30,550
La Crosse-Onalaska, WI-MN730$43,810$21.06$57,970$29,840
Madison, WI4,450$47,000$22.6$62,040$33,050
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI9,530$46,840$22.52$61,160$33,050
Oshkosh-Neenah, WI1,150$45,110$21.69$59,930$33,130
Racine, WI830$43,990$21.15$59,090$29,350
Sheboygan, WI590$44,670$21.48$58,450$30,700
Wausau, WI860$44,580$21.43$58,860$31,690
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks, OCC Code 43-3031, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

What skills are needed by bookkeepers in Wisconsin?

Success in bookkeeping, especially in a state like Wisconsin, relies on mastering essential skills:

  • Attention to detail
  • Proficiency in invoicing procedures
  • Critical thinking abilities
  • Strong organizational skills
  • Effective communication skills
  • Efficient time management

By sharpening these skills, aspiring bookkeepers can set themselves up for success in their careers, whether they’re employed by a company, an accounting firm, or working as independent contractors.

What role does a bookkeeper have in a company, in Wisconsin?

Absolutely, these responsibilities are central to a bookkeeper’s role in safeguarding a company’s financial health and integrity.

Accurately recording sales and purchases maintains an updated record of financial transactions.

Enhancing the company’s financial standing entails analyzing financial data and proposing growth and profitability strategies.

Documenting transactions ensures transparency and compliance with financial regulations.

Utilizing reporting tools effectively generates meaningful financial reports for informed decision-making.

Establishing systems to track money flow ensures efficient cash management and mitigates financial discrepancies.

Can I work remotely as a bookkeeper in Wisconsin?

Of course!

The increase in remote work opportunities has created fresh possibilities for bookkeepers to operate from any corner of the globe.

Whether you opt for remote employment with a company or set up your own freelance venture, virtual bookkeeping provides the freedom and independence to steer your career.

USA Bookkeeper Schools by State

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