Every small business needs the solid expertise of an accountant.
In fact, many business owners today are looking for accountants to help them with tax and bookkeeping concerns.
While you can find an accountant through a few minutes of research, there are some other strategies you can utilize.
Here are some of the ways to choose the best accountant for your small business.
Before searching for the best accountant, you need to prepare a list of questions.
Preparing questions is important because they can help you assess the accountant’s skills and ensure you asked everything you wanted to.
Here are some questions to help you get started:
“Do you have experience in my niche or industry?”
Most accountants can work with all business industries, but some providers are specialized. By knowing who has professional experience in your business niche, you can easily pick the best small business accountant.
“Can you help me with tax issues?”
The best accountant should be able to help you with tax-related situations like filing tax returns.
However, some accountants are only focused on bookkeeping, auditing, and management consulting. If you need help with small business taxes, make sure to ask this question.
“How can we communicate?”
With the help of the internet, there are countless ways to connect with someone. But if you prefer one communication tool over another, you should ask the accountant about this.
“What do you think about my current business accounting system?”
At first glance, the question seems open-ended and focused on getting the accountant’s opinion. But this simple question can determine if the vetted accountant is a great fit for your business.
By asking this question, you can observe the accountant’s way of thinking and attention to your business. At this stage, the accountant can even make suggestions regarding your company’s current accounting system.
The aforementioned questions are enough to help you sort the best small business accountant.
Discuss Goals & Expectations
Discussing your business goals with your team is a great way to put everyone on the same page. And if you want to get the best accountant from the start, you must open up regarding your small business goals, milestones, and expectations.
Why is a preliminary discussion of goals important?
This strategy is necessary for finding the best accountant because you can figure out the accounting service that will work for your small business.
If you can discuss goals with the best accountant or CPA, you can manage expectations. This strategy is even more important if you plan to expand your small business within a few years.
Goal discussion should be as brief as possible. It’s efficient to keep your points outlined so that you don’t meander off to other confusing and unnecessary topics.
Know About the Different Areas of Accounting
Proper knowledge can help you prevent errors in running a business. The same thing can be said in terms of hiring the best small business accountant.
Before you even start your search, learn more about the different areas of accounting. You don’t need to explore them all – just the ones that you think are helpful for your small business.
Tax accounting is a popular service. Since every business might be exposed to tax issues, there will always be a significant demand for tax accountants.
Do you want to improve the long-term financial performance of your business?
In that case, you can’t go wrong with managerial accounting. This type of accounting service aims to optimize your company’s financial data to avoid future discrepancies.
Managerial accountants can also work with your management team in terms of handling financial data and preparing important documents.
Similar to managerial consulting, an auditing service is focused on financial data management. The only difference is that auditors review your company’s data to ensure that there are no discrepancies. Auditors are also inclined to review past financial records and can work side by side with tax accountants.
Choose: Enrolled Agent or CPA?
A CPA can bring the best value to your small business. A CPA is a reputable accountant licensed by the state. Many CPAs typically have their own practices and offices, but others work internally for companies.
An Enrolled Agent or EA holds the highest credential given by the IRS. EAs are licensed on a federal level, which makes them valuable for large-scale businesses, organizations, and corporations.
Perhaps one distinguishable trait is the fact that an Enrolled Agent is more focused on taxation instead of accounting services. Still, the Enrolled Agent can handle daily accounting tasks.
For small businesses, typical accountants and licensed bookkeepers are ideal enough. CPAs and EAs are known for their competitive rates, but they can offer top-tier accounting expertise which will benefit your business for the coming years.
The Irrefutable Qualities of the Best Accountant for Your Business
By knowing about the qualities of the best small business accountant, you can hire the right one.
Keenness to Detail
The best accountant knows how to handle financial details in a smooth and accurate way. It’s normal for financial details to fall into disarray, especially if the business has been around for years. Just imagine the number of receipts, documents, and other data sources that a business owner must handle.
If you have a reliable detail-oriented accountant by your side, most financial errors and inconsistencies can be avoided. Accountants have developed their own personal detail management strategies. With this detail management skill, your business will gain the proper leverage that it needs.
Effective Data Gatherer
Data gathering is an important process that’s part of any accounting service. The best accountant must know how to gather data in the most efficient way possible. If data is gathered accurately, you don’t have to worry about discrepancies and lost documents.
An accountant who can communicate effectively is a big plus for your small business. If the accountant doesn’t know how to communicate properly, important details will be lost.
Many experts have also noted that communication becomes more valuable as the business expands. If there’s a specific tax change, for example, the accountant must be able to relay it to the business owner.
Diverse Accounting Knowledge
By now, you’re possibly aware that accounting covers different areas that are relatively different from each other.
The best accountant for small business doesn’t know every bit of information from these areas, but his or her knowledge should be diverse enough.
This accountant can help you not only in bookkeeping but in general financial advisory and tax concerns.
Grace Under Pressure
Accounting is full of pressures – especially if you’re trying to meet a specific deadline.
The best accountant knows how to maintain his or her composure under pressure. This trait is important because losing your marbles will cause you to lose traction as well.
An accountant who easily breaks down under pressure can compromise your small business in the long run. So make sure that you pick the best accountant who can handle pressure with grace.
And If You Choose the Best Accountant…
The best accountant for small businesses might charge premium rates. This is normal because you’re availing a top-tier accounting service.
Consider the best accountant service as a remarkable investment for your company’s future. Don’t worry too much about rates – think about the results that you can get.
The good thing is that most accounting service providers for small businesses have flexible packages that you can choose from.
Finding the best accountant shouldn’t be too difficult – as long as you apply the discussed strategies.
If you’re ready to get the services of a virtual accountant or bookkeeper, schedule a call. Our certified accountants are ready to help!