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Manchester Mum finds mojo to go it alone after home study course with Ideal Schools......

Naomi Harris

Naomi studied the self assessment and corporation tax elements of this course package to help to grow her bookkeeping practice:
ICB Level 4 Diploma


A Manchester mum of four has launched her own bookkeeping and accountancy business after completing two qualifications with bookkeeping home study specialist Ideal Schools.

Naomi Harris says she was born with a love of numbers and decided to switch full-time into bookkeeping after a serious brain injury changed her outlook on life.

“I loved playing with numbers and that’s the story they told from almost the day I was born,” Naomi says. “As a child, my favourite game was stacking Rummy cards in piles based on their numbers or colours. When I was older, that developed into things like Sudoku puzzles.

 
“I’d always wanted to work with numbers, but digital marketing was the career that fell into my lap – I enjoyed it and I was very busy with four children, so I never really pursued my real passion.

“Then in 2016 I had a serious injury to my brain and was paralysed down my right side. I’m fully recovered now, but I felt like I’d had such a near death experience, that I had to do what I wanted to do – or may not get another chance.”

Naomi initially took four ICB courses with another college, but felt she needed more support and experience.

“I felt I had a lot of knowledge, but didn’t have the confidence to do it for myself,” Naomi says. “So, in April 2018 I took employment in bookkeeping, which has been great and has really helped me build experience.”

Noami also wanted to further boost her qualifications so she would be able to complete self-assessment tax returns and year end accounts for small companies. She discovered Ideal Schools online and was impressed with the feedback from other students.

 
“They were highly recommended by lots of people and had tremendously supportive reviews,” Naomi says. “I also liked the fact that they focused specifically on bookkeeping rather than a whole range of different things.”

Naomi went on to complete two qualifications with Ideal Schools in self-assessment tax returns and FRS 105, the financial reporting standard needed to complete year end accounts for micro entities – those with 50 or fewer employees and turnover of £10.2 million or less. These are part of a suite of courses Ideal Schools delivers through the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB), which promotes professionalism in the sector.

“The support from Ideal Schools was absolutely tremendous, especially from my tutor,” Naomi says. “I always felt validated for whatever I asked, even if it was a stupid question. Their Facebook groups are also fantastic, and you can learn so much just from reading other people’s questions and answers.”

With the help of her husband Yosef, Naomi incorporated her business – Y & N Accounts Ltd – in September 2019 – and already has five clients, with several more in the pipeline, including a fashion retailer, a local start-up business , and a portfolio of clients including those in the property businesses and nursing homes.

“I want to grow and grow – but want to pace myself so I can focus on setting up each client correctly,” Naomi says. “Over the next year I’d love to expand my client base as much as I feel able to do properly. And then when my time is full, I’ll be looking to take on employees and expand into an office.”

Based in Glasgow, Ideal Schools has helped launched thousands of financial careers and businesses since it was set up 37 years ago in 1983.

Director Brian McVean says: “There are more than 5 million private sector businesses in the UK and this number is growing by around 250,000 a year. Ninety nine per cent of these are micro, small and medium sized enterprises who need help to fulfil the HMRC’s two most important legal requirements: returning financial reports each year and the recording and paying of any staff.

“Ideal Schools provides a complete range of bookkeeping, payroll and taxation courses to help our students become a self-employed bookkeeper or work within a financial environment.

“We offer unfettered access to our tutors and have an exam pass rate averaging over 95%. We love numbers – but will never treat our students like one! We are delighted to have helped Naomi find her passion in bookkeeping and look forward to continuing to support her in her studies.”