When you’re running a small business, it’s easy to get bogged down by the numbers. Only 40 percent of business owners say they’re comfortable crunching those numbers and accountants have ranked as the number one professional that small businesses need the most.
You want to follow your passion and serve your business well but can’t do that while following the money. Discover the right methods to hire a small business accountant to clean these details off your plate and give you peace of mind.
We’re giving you some ideas on how to do this below!
Small Business Accountants Save Money
The reason you want to hire a small business accountant is to manage your money matters. This includes everything from tax preparation and filing, payroll, and chasing down accounts receivables that you are patiently waiting for.
Learn the nine reasons to leave your tax preparation to a pro before you begin searching for accountants.
While they’re doing that, you’re running your business. If you need to take the time to do these things yourself, the time you spend is a financial resource that takes away from your ability to earn.
Hiring small business accountants save you money this way right off the bat. But it’s only one way.
From tax credits to payroll management and ghost assets, the right accountant or bookkeeper can help you manage money and save money.
Don’t know what ghost assets are? That makes you among the 74 percent of business owners that don’t. But a good accountant will.
Finding the right one will help your company grow, and not only make you money but save you money as well.
Do You Need a Certified Accountant?
The simple answer to this is no, you don’t need one. But if your company is larger than most, it’s a good idea to have credentialed accountants on the payroll.
The truth is, a good bookkeeper or accountant may not pay for their certification to save money for themselves. A freelancing bookkeeper that has been doing books for decades may be a better accountant than someone that just came out of school and dropped a wad of cash on credentials.
When you are looking for an accountant, the thing you need to keep at the top of your mind is that you need a person that is managing your biggest resource -– money. You want someone that is a good fit for you personally.
Remember that your accountant is going to learn every nitty-gritty thing about you. They’ll learn about your personal life, and your biggest asset, finances.
Credentials are an extra assurance for safety and protection, and if you can afford one with credentials that could be a good fit.
Find someone that is knowledgeable about your industry, and has a track record of security and confidentiality. Discover the seven signs you need a financial advisor before you seek one.
Use Government and Social Networks
Because your accountant is going to be managing the most important personal details of your life, you want someone that knows their stuff. Small businesses are important to the economy of your community — and your country.
Governments and business associations know this and want you to succeed. A good business accountant knows this as well, and they also want you to succeed.
Referrals from these associations and from your own networks are great tools to find the best accountant. Check with your local business friends and get the feel for who they’re using and how well they like their services.
The local chamber of commerce will also have access to lists of useful professionals that may have a fit for you. Your social networks online and offline are a valuable resource for you to start looking.
Interview your networks before you begin interviewing accountants.
Does Software Matter?
When you begin interviewing for a good accountant, expect to hear a lot about software. Unless you’re in the business of accounting software, you probably won’t know a lot about the best kind of software needed for your business.
But once you start interviewing potential accountants, you’re going to hear them list off the software they use. Is this important?
It can be. You don’t want an accountant that is managing a multi-billion dollar corporation with paper and pencil.
But at the same time, you don’t need to know the ins and outs of the software. As long as your accountant knows what your business needs, and can find the software you need to manage that, that’s all you need to know.
Hire a Proven Money-Saver
By the time you’ve sought referrals in your business network, social media, and through government associations, you should have a few people you want to interview. You always want to interview a few before you decide, to get an idea of what is out there and what is the best fit for you.
When it comes to small business accountants, you want someone that knows your industry, at least marginally and knows how to save you money. In-depth industry knowledge isn’t mandatory.
Accountants manage what comes in, what goes out, and how you can keep more money coming in than going out. Those concepts won’t change from industry to industry.
But you still want someone that’s proactive about this as well. Proactive money management is a preventive way of losing money.
Find Out How They Will Save You Money
Ask this question in your interviews: How have you helped other businesses save money, and how can you help me do the same?
Their answer should be long, in-depth, and offer detailed examples of how they have done this. If it isn’t, it’s time to keep interviewing.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate their fee, as this is a money-saving method in itself. If they cost a little more than you want but have means of saving you money in other areas, this is something you want to keep in mind as well.
Don’t rule them out if their fee is higher and they can help you make money elsewhere. A good accountant that knows their tax credits for example, and can manage your payroll costs could save you thousands down the road even if their fees are higher now.
Choose a Growth-Oriented Accountant
When it comes to choosing an accountant or financial advisor, you want one that will help your business grow. The first way to do that is by saving money, the next is by making money.
There are approximately 650,000 licensed CPA’s in the United States alone, but there are even thousands more that can do the same job as an accountant or financial advisor.
Finding the right small business accountant for you is almost more difficult than finding the right spouse. It’s a marriage in business that will touch on every detail in your life, the most important one being your money.
Learn the top 10 benefits of hiring a small business accountant and begin feeling the growth of your company at your fingertips today.