Choosing the right accountant

ScotiaAccounting  |  8th January

Choosing a good accountant for your business is not as easy as just picking up the phone book and dialing the first number you see.

There are some key factors that you should take into *account* when making your decision…


Do they know my industry?

startups.co.uk emphasises the importance of asking your accountant about their experience:

The first thing you need to consider when going through your list of potential accountants is whether or not any of them have some degree of familiarity with your business’ sector.

If an accountant deals mainly with large corporate clients then they might not be right for your small cafe.

Are they qualified?

Remember that people do not need qualifications to call themselves an accountant

smallbusiness.co.uk states that “anyone can call themselves an accountant… You can wake up one morning and decide, ‘I’ll be an accountant today!‘”

To ensure that you are getting professional service ask to see qualifications.

Do they come recommended?

This is an important question; shop around a bit, ask everyone you know about their accountant, see if any trends develop.

Euntrepreneur.com suggests that “The best way to find a good accountant is to get a referral from your attorney, your banker or a business colleague in the same industry.

Who are their clients?

If you’ve found an accountant that focuses on your area of business then it might be time to ask about their other clients.

Rachel Bridge writing for the Telegraph says “you do not want them to be advising both you and your close competitors.

If they count your arch nemesis amongst their clients then perhaps you should steer clear.
 
Are they proactive?

If you’re spending money on a service you want to get as much as possible for your money.

When you meet a potential accountant for the first time observe how many questions they ask and how interested they are in your business.

businessinsider.com points out that “Where your finances are concerned, you want to be aware of any issues well before they become real problems, so finding an accountant who is proactive is key.

If you don’t get the impression that they care they probably don’t!