What is a Simple Bookkeeping Proposal?
A bookkeeping proposal is a document sent by accountants to potential clients offering bookkeeping services in an attempt to win a contract from a business. They are usually very similar to any other kind of sales proposal, only they are specifically used by accountants in the context of bookkeeping services.
A bookkeeping proposal may be sent out in response to a request for proposal, or could be sent out cold when trying to find clients. Proposals are a vital document for any freelance accountant as winning new business is arguably the most important part of the job, and the proposal phase is often the first time you’ll have contact with a business.
Note: You searched for a simple bookkeeping proposal for a reason. Our bookkeeping proposal template has all the elements of a client-winning document. Simply sign up for free, edit your template how you want, and send it to your client. Couldn’t be… simpler.
How to Prepare to Write Your Proposal
Prior to putting together your accounting services proposal and sending it to a business, it's good practice to take a few steps to prepare. Taking the time to prepare can reduce the likelihood of missing important details and ensure your proposal is properly targeted.
Carefully read through any materials
Before you start writing proposals, the first step should always be to read through any materials you have, such as a job description or request for proposal. This may sound like a no-brainer, but a surprising number of people immediately ruin their chances of landing a contract by failing to read the info properly. Once you know exactly what the client requires, you'll be vastly better positioned to start crafting your proposals.
Whatever the job, it's a good idea to put in a little research about the business. For some, this might just consist of looking up the company's website and getting a general idea of their online presence. In the context of accounting services and financial information, there's only so much relevant info available to the public, but it may be possible to build a picture of the organization's size and structure, which may help with planning the accounting services proposal.
Put together your relevant work experience
Any prospective business client will want proof that you can do the work they need. The best way to provide this is by highlighting your previous experience with similar work. Prepare by finding the most relevant examples and putting them together ready to add to your accounting services proposal.
Accurately estimate the cost and timeframe
Before you get anything down on paper, try to think carefully about how long the job in question is going to take. The more accurately you can estimate this, the better, as you’ll be able to provide a realistic and achievable estimate for your services to the client.
Look at your schedule to see how much free time you have for the work, then try to determine how many hours or days it will take you. With this information, you should have a fairly good basis to give your estimate.
What to include a simple bookkeeping proposal
Every proposal will vary in some terms of the precise details, layout, and design, but here are some important sections that we recommend you include in yours for maximum impact.
A cover page may not add any crucial information to a bookkeeping proposal, but it can definitely help to improve the overall presentation. It’s the first thing the reader will see, so if you have a simple but well-designed cover page it can make your accounting services proposal look more presentable and professional.
A cover letter is essentially an introduction and summary of the content of the accounting services proposal. Ideally, you should tailor each cover letter to each proposal. Opening your proposal in this way helps to make it look more professional, personalizes it, and can help the client understand the purpose of the accounting proposal.
Scope of services
Here, you should outline the services you will offer. It’s important that you’ve carefully read the job description before you write this section, as you’ll need to ensure it’s relevant to the work that’s being offered. Don’t go into too much detail, but clearly lay out the services you will offer and be sure to define limits to what you’ll provide.
Portfolio and experience/qualification
In this section, you can briefly cover any previous work experience you might have that you think will impress the recipient. Again, keep it as relevant as possible and don’t go into too much detail. Do you have specific experience assessing something that’s mentioned in the description, such as financial statements, balance sheet work, or budgeting? Then add that experience to make a bigger impact.
The more relevant the better, but you can also use experience that isn’t exactly the same as the job in question, so long as you can relate it in some way. For example you could highlight transferable skills that you gained or showcased.
Many potential clients will skip directly to this section before reading anything else, so make sure your price estimate is clearly presented as well as accurate. An easy way to quickly estimate your fees is to break down the work that will be required for a given job, then work out how long this will take you (i.e. the number of hours). When you have a figure, simply multiply it by your hourly rate, add 10% or so for unexpected extras, and you have your estimate!
After price, this may be the most important factor for many clients, so make it as clear, concise, and accurate as possible. Again, the best way to easily estimate the timeframe needed is to break down the work that’s required and work out how long each part will take you. Try to see how this time slot fits into your existing schedule and then give a realistic, achievable timeframe.
How to write a simple bookkeeping proposal
A surprising number of freelancers don’t actually know how to write a work proposal for bookkeeping service, or at least haven’t optimized the process to give themselves the best possible chance of converting the business to a client. Here are a few quick tips that should help.
Read the job description
We’ve said it before but it’s worth repeating. Always read the job description in detail before you start writing your proposal, then refer back to it while you’re writing it. It’s easy to forget or miss important details, so it can save you a lot of hassle in the long-run.
Personalize the proposal
Nobody wants to receive a proposal that is completely generic and not relevant to the job on offer. The prospective client is always more likely to consider a proposal that’s clearly had thought put into it. Try to include some recipient-specific details and a personal greeting in every proposal you send, for example in the cover letter section. Also, make sure all the information is relevant.
Keep it focused and concise
You might be the best freelance accountant in the world, but if your proposal is long and boring, nobody will even bother to read it. Clients may well be reading through dozens of proposals from different people, so you want all the important information to be clearly, concisely, and accurately presented to improve your chances of success.
Use a template
Unfortunately, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll land every job you send a proposal for, so you may end up sending a large number of proposals out when trying to find work. This can be very time-consuming, with no guarantee of a payoff, so using proposal templates is an excellent way to save time and increase your chances of converting.
Creating a simple bookkeeping proposal is simple with Bonsai
At Bonsai, we know how difficult it can be to produce high-quality, unique, and effective proposals for each and every potential client. So, we’ve made it easy for you to produce personalized, professional proposals that will win you business.
- Automatic notifications - We’ll notify your recipients automatically, meaning you don’t have to worry about staying on top of following up.
- Tailored proposals - Get all the benefits of fully personalized proposals without the hassle of writing them from scratch every time.
- Electronic signing - Increase the chance of converting potential clients by offering electronic signature functionality.
- Proven to convert - Our accounting services proposal sample and other related templates are designed by professionals and tested to ensure they actually convert.
Simple bookkeeping proposal FAQs
FAQ 1 - What is the difference between a proposal and a quote?
When considering proposals vs quotes, which is the best to send to a potential client? A proposal would generally be sent in response to a request for proposal. They are usually more detailed than simple quotes, so should take more time to write. Quotes are mainly intended to provide a concise pricing estimate, usually in response to a specific request for a quote.
FAQ 2 - What should I do after sending a proposal?
The bidding process is competitive, and you may be bidding against a much more established accounting firm or bookkeeping business. Prospective clients will almost always receive multiple proposals and need to consider which is best suited to them. For this reason, you should try to follow up with the client after sending a proposal to maximize your chances of being noticed.