Choosing an accountant is essentially like choosing a business partner who will be with you for an extremely long time. They are someone that you should be able to trust and depend on, no matter how easy or dire the situation may be. As your business grows in size, your accountant should be there to help you with the financial highs and lows, continuously ensuring that you haven’t made any huge money-related mistakes.
Choose Your Accountant Type
The first step you should take after deciding to hire an accountant is to choose exactly which accountant to hire. This step, arguably, takes the longest, because you will have to take a number of factors into account and contact many different professionals before reaching your final decision. These factors include the location of the accountant in comparison to your business or home, their reputation and reviews from other clients, the availability of the accountant, and whether they can work with the accounting software you’re using (if you’re using software).
Do Your Research
Once you’ve discovered an accountant with good reviews who also operates near you, you should check their certification. Always choose a certified or chartered accountant to work with, as these accountants are recognised by a professional body. An experienced accountant will be able to add more value into your dealings, and they will know how to help you straight from the start of your partnership. Of course, you can use an accountant who isn’t chartered etc., but only if you’re looking for assistance in bookkeeping or simple financial management. For anything else, a fully qualified and recognised accountant is necessary.
You should also make sure that the accountants that you’re looking at are experienced with assisting other businesses and companies that are a similar size to yours. Be completely upfront about the size of your business, and answer any questions you’re asked, within reason. Accountants should be able to handle tax returns and other financial documents with an experienced skill set. If you’re in doubt, try tapping into your social networks and ask your associates and friends. Your online connections, whether you’ve met them in person or not, are extremely invaluable. The ideal accountant might be someone you’ve already glanced over without knowing, and a second opinion should always be welcome when it comes to financial endeavours.
Proactivity Is Key
Another good trait to look for in an accountant is their proactiveness. Find someone who is known for being proactive about saving their clients some of their hard-earned cash. The best accountants are those who are willing to put the work in, even outside of their meetings with you. When you’re thinning out the pack to find a suitable accountant, why not try asking them a few questions – such as exploring what they could suggest to help you save money in your business.
Finally, check which accounting software they are familiar with and which one they prefer to use. If you’re a large business who will soon be on the government’s Making Tax Digital list, this could be a crucial step.
At Cove Accountancy Services, we specialise in providing accounting, tax advice, payroll and bookkeeping services to businesses in and around the Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey areas. We have been spending a lot of time working with VAT registered businesses to get them ready for the dreaded ‘Making Tax Digital’ deadline. If you are struggling with this, or would like some information, just get in touch with us today.