An Antrim woman has set up her own successful business in Market Square after courses at a specialist UK-wide e-learning college focusing exclusively on bookkeeping and accounting. After only three months in practice, the business, New Balance Bookkeeping, is already attracting local firms.
Marie Wells, 50, joined 2000 other students at long-established online college, Ideal Schools, studying to become a member of the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB) with the eventual aim of setting up her own business.
Mrs Wells had initially studied Architectural Technology, finishing her degree in 2011, and struggled to find work in the recession. Then she suffered a serious illness requiring surgery.
While recuperating through 2012 Marie wanted to find a career that would speak to her three loves – property and construction, education and numbers. Having run her own business previously, and been let down by an accountant she had hired, Mrs Wells was determined she wanted to qualify as a professional bookkeeper to enable her to better support her own business and offer a professional and regulated service to her clients.
Being off work, she was able to complete the exams quickly, and focused on getting the skills she needed to complete accounts for small to medium enterprises (SMEs), and soon found work in the industry.
By 2015, she had gained more practical experience, and returned to Ideal Schools to complete the next level of qualifications and obtain her Self-Assessment Diploma. She describes it as: “Like never having been away. The tutors and staff welcomed me with open arms, and just wanted to know how they could help me prepare to get started with my own business.”
Mrs Wells said: “One of the best things about Ideal Schools is the social media side. There’s such a thriving online community, and they’re always there to help and offer advice.
“Ideal Schools gave me a great foundation to start and build my business. All the confidence and training they gave me is priceless to me.”
Mrs Wells started New Balance Bookkeeping in August this year, and plans to expand the practice to take on more staff as soon as possible.
Click here to see the services that Marie offers.