Every business in the world will need the services of accountants during the year. Smaller businesses need accounting services occasionally, while large businesses heavily depend on them.
Large businesses may even have a dedicated accounting department to handle all their accounting needs.
Most people do not consider the accounting department of a business as a part of its core activities. However, without an effective accounting department, businesses face many problems and bear extra costs.
For this reason, all types of businesses need to find a good accountant. However, good accountants are difficult to find. This is mainly because many accountants are in the market from which businesses have to choose.
Yet all accountants cannot be considered good. Therefore, businesses must know how to select the right accountant for their needs.
Before businesses can select accountants, they must understand what services accountants provide that make them so valuable.
What do accountants do?
In the past, accountants used to be only responsible for the bookkeeping of a business. However, nowadays, accountants provide various functions in addition to bookkeeping. These services may include:
- Auditing services include examining the financial information of a business internally or externally and giving an opinion regarding it.
- Bookkeeping services include gathering, categorizing, analyzing, recording, and reporting financial information.
- Business advisory services include advising on different aspects of finance to a business such as expansions, mergers, insurance policies, capital structure, etc.
- Tax advisory services include tax-related advice to a business, which may include tax planning and compliance issues.
How to find a good accountant?
There are many different aspects of accountants that businesses need to evaluate to find a good one. Some of these aspects are listed below.
For businesses, the best way to find an accountant is by asking for referrals or recommendations from other entities. There are also societies for registered accountants in some countries where businesses can find registered accountants.
For accountants, registration means they will be a part of some professional accounting body. For the USA, the main accounting body is CPA; for the rest of the world, the main accounting bodies may include ACCA, ICAEW, CAI, CIMA, etc.
Businesses hiring registered accountants can significantly increase their chances of finding a good accountant.
Accountants provide many different types of services, as discussed above. A good accountant should be able to provide all of them. However, accountants may also need experience in those areas to be good at their work.
Therefore, businesses looking for a good accountant should first figure out what their requirements are from an accountant.
Once they have their requirements straight, they can look for accountants that meet those requirements. For example, a business may only require bookkeeping and tax services. Therefore, the definition of a good accountant may differ from other businesses.
While many experienced accountants or accounting firms in the market can do everything a business expects of them, they may come at a high price.
A good accountant, while experienced, must also come at an affordable price to the business.
Therefore, the business must consider the fees required by accountants. For the business, an accountant that can perform all the duties required by the business at the lowest possible price should be good.
However, the business must ensure that the lower costs do not affect the quality of the accountant’s work.
4) Customer service
While all of the above points should ensure that a business finds a good accountant, the customer service accountants offer is also important. Customer service consists of communication, availability, problem-solving, etc.
If an accountant does not provide good customer service despite meeting all the above requirements, the business cannot rely on them in the long run.
Similarly, an accountant that provides good customer service but cannot satisfy the above aspects is not good. Therefore, the business must also consider the customer service provided by the accountant.
Businesses need accountants for different reasons, such as auditing, bookkeeping, business advisory, and tax advisory. Furthermore, businesses heavily rely on their accounting function to save costs and be successful in the long term.
Therefore, businesses must find a good accountant. A good accountant should be registered with a professional accounting body.
Furthermore, they should provide the services required by a business. Similarly, they should also come at an affordable price to the business. Finally, a good accountant should also provide good customer service.