10 Ways To Get The Best Value From Your Accountant
More than ever, business owners need the advice of a good accountant. An experienced accountant’s involvement can go beyond the technical competency of bookkeeping to developing strategic plan for the development, survival or recovery of your business. It is important to take the time to identify the accountant who works best for your sector, your organisation and your style of doing business. Be open to working with your accountant and know the information you need to keep driving your business forward. Our tops tips on identifying and working with the accountant who is the best fit for your business:
- Choose Carefully. Look for accountants with experience of your type of business. Anyone can set up as ‘an accountant’, so look for chartered or certified accountants, whose qualified status is backed by membership of professional bodies. A large firm suggests reliability, but a smaller one may respond better to your needs. Ask prospective accountants how they can help your business. Request references and proof, they have professional indemnity insurance, before you make your final decision.
- Shop Around. Armed with recommendations of good accountants, get a full breakdown of an accountant’s charges and services. Work out which one offers you best value for money (and that’s not necessarily the cheapest, of course). And, at least once a year, review the value for money you receive. If you believe you can get better advice and value elsewhere, go elsewhere.
- Explain your Expectations. Your accountant will summarise terms and conditions in a letter of engagement. Put your expectations in writing, too. Describe the level of service you require, for example, how quickly you need queries to be answered. Ask to deal with a specific contact, to help build a close professional relationship.
- Ask Questions. Check what other services your accountant can offer. These could include guidance on setting up your business, preparation of financial forecasts, help with loan applications, audits, investment advice and other suggestions for minimising your tax liability.
- Use your Accountant’s Contacts. Accountants specializing in your type of business can often suggest good trade contacts. Perhaps your accountant knows a supplier who can offer you a great deal or maybe they know of a potential investor.
- Keep Talking. Communicate regularly with your accountant to get the best possible value from the relationship. Schedule quarterly meetings to review your firm’s performance, so you can better plan for the future. Be sure to meet before producing your end-of-year accounts or tax return.
- Keep User-Friendly Records. If necessary, ask your accountant for advice about how best to maintain your financial records. If your books are easier to read, you will save them time, which should mean a lower bill.
- Do the Easy Jobs Yourself. To reduce your outgoings, take care of simple bookkeeping tasks yourself, possibly by using accounting software. You could then better focus your accountants’ efforts where they best serve your business.
- Delegate. If your time would be better spent concentrating on sales or product development, you could ask an accountant to take greater responsibility for your bookkeeping and payroll. Although a more expensive option, this could free you up to make more profitable use of your time.
- Ask their Advice. An experienced accountant can offer sound advice in a number of areas. For example, they could help with your business plan, help you estimate the cost of new projects or advise on the levels of investment needed to achieve your business development goals. If you decide to sell up, they could even help with valuing your business and advise on the sale to minimise your tax liability.
Contact Avid Partners today to see how we can help you drive your business forward. Call us on 0818 303087. Email Jamie O’Hanlon at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively complete the enquiry form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
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"I have dealt with Jamie O' Hanlon, of Avid Partners - Accountants & Business Advisors Chartered Certified Accountants, for a number of years as he is auditor to one of my clients. I have always found him to be professional and responsive in his approach."
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We at Fitzies Bar have worked with Avid Partners - Business & Financial Advisers for over five years. We find that the advice and support offered to us in addition to all of our book-keeping requirements to include payroll, VAT, etc. is invaluable and has helped to contribute to our continued growth especially in these challenging times. I would have no hesitation in recommending Avid Partners.
Jamie and his staff are a pleasure to work with. They respond promptly to any queries we have and are critical to our financial planning and the future needs of our business. I would highly recommend them to anyone interested in accounting services.
We at Stillorgan Cycles have used Jamie and his Team at Avid Partners – Accountants and Business Advisers for over five years. We have found that the retail advice and support offered to us is second to none and has helped to contribute to our continued growth especially in these challenging times. I would have no hesitation in recommending Avid Partners.
I met Avid Partners through a local business networking group. We had been using the same accountants for years and found that in these harsh economic times that we were not getting good enough value or service. We were very impressed by the company's professionalism and enthusiasm and genuine interest in helping us get the most out of our business. As a result we are now clients of Avid Partners and are thrilled with our decision.
After meeting Avid Partners with a view to changing our accountants, we came away with a better deal financially and a feeling that we were in capable hands. We feel that Avid Partners has a personal interest in the welfare of our business. Avid Partners have given us great advice, help and support and respond to our day to day queries with speed and efficiency. We feel it was a great move for us to change to Avid Partners.