Some Little-Known Factors to Think about When Choosing Your Accountant
When you have decided that having an accountant is one of the best things you can do for your business, whether it’s because financial matters are already taking up too much of your time or you don’t want to end up paying for costly errors when it comes to your taxes and compliance, then the next step would be to choose the proper one.
Choosing the right accountant entails careful thought, and you probably already know that you should choose one with the right skills, affiliations, and qualifications. For instance, accountants that are qualified through renowned associations or bodies such as ICAEW, ACCA, CIMA, or ICAS are often a good choice, and you may want someone with a certain level of experience in terms of your industry and kind of business as well. But there are other factors that can make up your choice, so here are some little-known factors you should definitely think about when choosing your accountant.
Should you go for an individual or a firm?
Going for an individual accountant or an accountancy firm will largely depend on what you prefer and what your needs are; the more complex your needs, it follows that you may want a firm that has a team of accountants who can take care of your requirements. But the size of your business may have something to do with it as well; generally speaking, smaller businesses or sole traders may work well with a small accounting firm, but if you are a start-up that is growing quickly, you may want a firm that’s medium-sized.
Look at their reputation, reviews, and testimonials
There are plenty of different sites where you can see and view the reviews and ratings for different accountancy firms, but when you are looking for reviews and testimonials, look for those from the same or similar business size to your own. You want to know that your prospective accountancy firm has experience with similar-sized businesses so you can know if they will be able to handle your needs. You may even ask prospective accountants if they can provide you with testimonials first-hand.
Assess the importance of location
Nowadays, location doesn’t make much of a difference because many transactions and meetings can be done virtually. In fact, it’s recommended. But if regularly-scheduled face to face meetings and discussions matter to you, then you may want someone who is easily accessible and close by. With face to face discussions and meetings, you can have broader conversations and even benefit from standard or general advice. In other words, if you want something more from your accountant than just basic accountancy services, it would be better to have them within travelling distance. If you are in London, for example, then you may want to consider central London accountants so you can meet with them or visit them whenever necessary.
You should also consider the accountant’s services; what kinds of services can they offer, and do these services provide your business with the value you need? Another thing is their fees – basic services may be offered with a monthly fee, such as bookkeeping, but there may be other services, such as tax or business planning, that may warrant an hourly fee. Discuss this with your potential accountant and make sure that all aspects are clear.
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