There are a number of things you will consider when selecting an accountant for your business. You might, for example, want to work with a large practice rather than a small one, or you might prefer a local Irish company rather than a multinational corporation. You also have to consider fees, expertise, and, possibly, recommendations you receive from other people.
There are, however, three other crucial things to consider when choosing an accountant that many people forget. Each one can have an impact on the level of service you receive and how much your business benefits from having the accountant.
Make Sure You Hire a Chartered Accountant
Anyone can call themselves an accountant or a variation on the term, just like anyone can call themselves an expert or a guru. A chartered accountant is different, however. Chartered accountants must have appropriate qualifications and they must operate according to pre-set professional and ethical standards. This includes standards on how they deliver their service to you as well as committing themselves to ongoing professional development.
Find an Accountant Who Will Add Financial Value to Your Business
Accountants have important administrative and accountancy duties. Examples include doing your accounts accurately, properly calculating your tax obligations so you only pay what you have to, and ensuring your returns are filed on time with the Revenue.
A good accountant will go much further than this, however. This includes offering advice on the current situation in your business or how it is progressing, and being a financial and business sounding board for new ideas. After all, good accountants have extensive experience with businesses in a range of industries and of varying sizes. That knowledge is indispensable to your business.
For example, a good accountant can help you spot new opportunities in the market or see potential problems in the future. Normally this is achieved by providing you with useable and understandable data and information about your business, but it can also include the accountant giving you the advice directly.
In addition, a good accountant can help with things like preparing budget forecasts in business plans, being pro-active in optimising your tax position, assisting you with restructuring projects, and more.
Find an Accountant You Like Working With
The relationship between you and your accountant is one of the most important relationships you will have in your business. You should avoid relationships which involve minimal contact where most interactions take place around the time of submitting your tax returns.
Instead, your accountant should be someone you speak to regularly and have a trusting relationship with. It should be someone who is able to give you the undiluted truth about any issue in your business, however difficult that information is to hear. How you act on the advice or information is up to you, but getting it is crucial. In fact, in many situations, your accountant may be one of the few people who can cut through the noise of running a busy business on a day-to-day basis.
The success of your business is down to you, but the right accountant can help you get there faster and can even help you push further.
If you need help or advice in your business, please speak to a member of the Gilroy Gannon team today.