Working with an accountant may be intimidating, particularly if you do not consider yourself a numbers person. KashFlow offers advice in this article on how to get the most out of your working relationship with your accountant.
Begin by determining the services you need from your accountant.
Accountants may assist you in a variety of ways, including the following:
- Annual financial statements
- Assisting with the application of widely accepted accounting standards (GAAP)
- Dealing with tax returns, including business and individual income taxes, as well as sales and use taxes and VAT
- Assisting you in developing financial budgets
- Advising on investments, loans, and other sources of money
- Collaborating with financial institutions on your behalf
- Additionally, we provide company and personal financial counseling, such as retirement planning.
Once you’ve determined what services you want from an accountant, the next step is to choose one that specializes in this area and can therefore provide you with the most relevant advice.
Choose an accountant from this selection that fully understands the goals you have for your organization. Regardless of the accountant you select, ensure that they are certified or chartered.
Bear in mind that accountants are often busiest during tax season. As a result, it’s critical to discover and engage an accountant before this busy period.
Ascertain that you are a good fit
You would never choose a business partner or recruit a new employee without first background checks and getting to know them. Similarly, you should not engage an accountant without a first background check.
Choose an accountant based on their price structure. Rather than that, seek an accountant who has the expertise and resources your firm requires and locate the best fit. If possible, consult an expert familiar with the tax regulations that relate to your firm.
If you’re on a tight budget, look for accountants that provide fixed-price services or value-based pricing, which may be a better financial match for you.
Finally, one of the most critical factors is that you pick an accountant you feel comfortable and trust since you will be working directly with them on potentially sensitive financial problems.
Determine how much work you want your accountant to do.
Accountants are often compensated hourly, so outsourcing all aspects of your bookkeeping and accounting is unlikely to be cost-efficient for a small firm.
If feasible, you should do your day-to-day accounting. This also gives you a more excellent grasp of your business’s performance and health, which may be beneficial if you decide to seek investors or purchasers.
If finances are not your strong suit, consider using accounting software such as KashFlow. Accounting software makes bookkeeping easier to handle by speeding data input and automating the majority of complicated computations.
KashFlow has connected its software with the IRIS accounting platform, which is used by many accountants in the United Kingdom. This provides your accountant with a complete view of your company in real-time, enhancing efficiency and cooperation and expediting the year-end process for both of you.
After you’ve taken care of your day-to-day accounting and bookkeeping, you may call an accountant for assistance with more complicated chores such as bank reconciliation and tax returns, if necessary. They may also provide financial advice on company issues such as recruiting and relocating.
When determining what to assign to your accountant, keep an eye on what they can do to promote the health of your organization.
Cooperate throughout the year
Even if you manage your accounts daily, it’s critical to consult with your accountant periodically during the year.
This helps keep them informed about the state of your company. During check-in, your accountant may identify any possible problems or wrong turns in time for you to correct them.
Additionally, they may keep you informed of any changes to applicable legislation and best practices. This will assist you in being compliant and in adequately planning for both your end-of-year tax returns and longer-term company objectives.
Never be reluctant to seek help from your accountant when necessary. If you have difficulty understanding VAT laws and regulations, see your accountant. Additionally, do not hesitate to request clarification or additional information if you do not comprehend what is stated. Your accountant is available to assist you.
Finally, determine if any changes in your personal or company situations need notification to your accountant. This might mean that your company strategy evolves in response to a change in revenue or business goals.
If you use cloud accounting software, you and your accountant can access the same real-time data regardless of their geographic location. This speeds up and simplifies data sharing.
The more access they have to your books, the more accurate their advice is. Additionally, keep in mind that an accountant can work on projects other than tax returns. They’ll be able to advise you on how your business spends its money, the revenue and expense ratios of various services and departments, and much more.
Organize your records
Whether your catch-ups are monthly, quarterly, or less often, you’ll need to maintain organized records.
The key to properly completing this task is knowing the information they will need. This reduces the amount of time they must spend analyzing your accounts and making appropriate modifications, which reduces the number of hours invoiced to you.
As said before, seeking clarification when unsure may significantly strengthen your connection with someone. This also applies to maintaining your financial records. By determining what your accountant needs, what they will use it for, and why, you can keep better organized and usable records.
It’s critical to communicate in the same language with your accountant and synchronize your objectives. If they talk in terms of figures and averages, request that they explain it in terms of company performance and growth so that you can go away with actionable points and a better picture of what to do next.
By following these five simple steps, you can ensure that you establish a strong working connection.