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How to Choose the Right Accountant

how to choose the right accountant

Having a skilled accountant at your fingertips is an invaluable asset for any business owner. Accountants can help you keep an eye on cash flow, payroll, taxes, and much more. Regardless of which stage your business development may find itself, to say that having the assistance of an experienced accountant is an important asset is an understatement.

Perhaps you’re getting ready to start a business. Maybe you’ve already started your business but need to look at new money management options. Or, maybe you’re a seasoned entrepreneur who simply isn’t happy with the accountant or CPA firm(s) you’ve been using. If that’s the case, it’s likely you’re looking for an accountant who is capable of providing more proactive and comprehensive business consulting services than what you’ve grown accustomed to.

Likewise, you may be wondering if an accountant is the right person to assist you with certain financial aspects of your business or individual circumstances. If any of these scenarios sound like the situation in which you currently find yourself, there’s a solution to your conundrum.

Here’s how to find the right accountant for your needs.

1. Assess your situation.

How much are you willing to delegate to an accountant? Are you looking for someone to merely handle your taxes, or are you on the hunt for someone who can offer full-circle services including items such as bookkeeping, business growth consulting, coaching, and planning?

Before you begin reaching out to any finance pros, it’s important to know exactly which services you require. This will have a major bearing on how much you’re willing to invest (financially) into your relationship with your accountant, and it will help you zero in on the right person (or team of people) quicker.

2. Set up consultations.

You’ve now made a list of possible CPAs to use for your business accounting needs, and after a few introductory phone calls, you’ve narrowed it down to three or four prime candidates. While it’s wise to think of your initial consultation with an accountant as an interview, you should also be assessing whether or not it’s a good fit for both of you.

Sometimes, this is as simple as gauging how well you relate to them on a personal level. Do you communicate with each other well? Do you seem to “click” well? Do you like the sound of the potential strategies they would implement for your business? How professional are they? Do they treat you with respect? Do you share the same values? All of these matters are important to weigh.

3. Do they offer what you need?

No matter how much you may personally relate to or enjoy the company of a particular accountant, they aren’t the right match for you if they don’t offer a service you need or will likely need in the future.

If your business is new (or you’re preparing to start a business), you need the services of a financial professional who can offer business consulting services. If you’ve been in business for 30 years and may be handing it off to your first-born within the next five years, you need the services of an accountant who can help you plan for succession. If you are planning on selling your business in the near future, you need an accountant that has experience in helping businesses maximize their value while proactively setting you up for success during your potential buyer’s due diligence phase. If your business is somewhere in between, you need to turn to an accountant who can help you wisely and safely scale your company.

Do you need business accounting services?

Our services extend beyond tax preparation and accounting. We provide insight for new business start-ups, financial planning and growth consulting for businesses, counsel on which accounting software to use (we’ll even train you or your internal accounting person if necessary), assistance with payroll, and business health analytics. If you have financial questions about your business, we’re here with the answers.

Learn more about our business services here.