Choosing a Small Business Accounting CompanyWhy should I employ you? Hiring a lawyer could be ” more significant” than taking on a member of staff, says Clive Lewis, head of enterprise at The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). “If you get the incorrect person, you can lose out on things you ought to know,” he explains, “and that can be extremely costly.”
Charlotte Chung, senior policy adviser in the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), states the essential issue to question during the hiring process is how the accountant will include financial value to your company. “Look for someone who can act as a business associate.
You need them to exhibit the skills and knowledge of encouraging a small enterprise.” Thus, take your time with research. Both Chung and Lewis advise meeting with a least three candidates before making a final option.
There are a few basic questions that must be asked during those meetings. “First, what are their qualifications, and therefore are they regulated by a body” States Lewis.
An ICAEW member, for example, will have professional indemnity insurance, meaning any losses to your business as a result of bad advice is going to be insured” He recommends speaking to others in your business to get second opinions about their reputation. Chung urges asking the Mangawhai accountant to share testimonials from customers, or even better, if you’re able to satisfy a present customer.
Having the right questions ready boils down to doing your homework,” summarises Lewis. “Be sure you don’t go into that very first meeting chilly, otherwise you are only going to have their PR pitch”
Could my money work harder? James Richardson is a business director at Metric, an accountancy firm specialising in start-ups. He says most people believe an accountant will only be looking after annual accounts and taxation compliance. But “that is only a small portion of what a good accountant could — and should — do for you.
“They will be able to help you raise capital by discovering grants, government funding pots, and tax relief strategies,” he clarifies. “They can let you sell shares in the business, crowdfund or find angel investing. Folks tend to say, can you balance my novels? What they should be asking is: what am I entitled to I do not know about?”
The money an accountant can save your company must obviously be weighed against the costs of employing them. Richardson says the question he often hears — “why should I pay you to do so?” — is consequently a valid one.
“Start-ups are cost conscious, so ask what you could do yourself. As an example, I would point people toward online bookkeeping software like Xero and Clear Novels.” Clive Lewis says there is “no need to be more considerate” when it comes to asking about an accountant’s fees.
“You need to ask, how much will this price?” He states. “Also ask, when are you going to bill me? Some charge annually, monthly or hourly. Talk money up front, otherwise you’ll be in for a shock once you’ve committed.”
Choosing the proper accountant is among the most important choices a little business can make. A great one can save you time and help your company grow; a poor one could cost you much cash. Yet with thousands to choose from, it can be an intimidating call to create. When it comes to picking and working with an accountant, then what are the questions every small business owner should ask in order to create the most informed choice?