For small businesses, finding the right accountant can be crucial. An accountant will carry out many duties in a business. Accountants are mainly responsible for recording the transactions of a business, known as bookkeeping. However, they can also carry out many other duties such as handling the taxes of the business, provide financial advice to the business, ensure compliance with different laws and regulations, and much more.
Due to the nature of accounting services and the nature of small businesses, these businesses need to find a good accountant. However, it can be tough to find the right accountant for a business. Therefore, small businesses must use some tips to find a good accountant. These tips are as below.
The first step in the process for a small business is to find any accountant. Once it finds an accountant, it can further evaluate them and find the right fit for the business. Preferably, accountants with a professional association such as CPA, ACCA, ICAEW should fit all the requirements of a business. The business can make a list of all accountants found in the process for further evaluation later.
There are many straightforward and cost-efficient ways to find accountants. For example, a small business can seek accountants by asking for recommendations or using online platforms.
Ask for recommendations
The best way to find a good accountant is to ask for recommendations. Small business owners can ask other businesses about their accountants or if they can recommend or refer any accountants. Similarly, when asking for recommendations, small businesses should enquire about the work ethic, competence and reliability of these accountants.
Use online platforms
Small businesses can also use different online platforms to find recommended accountants. These platforms will usually have review systems to allow customers to review their experience with accountants. Furthermore, customers can also write about why they liked the services provided by the accountants. Reading a few reviews should allow small businesses to get a general idea of the quality of the accountant in question.
Contact shortlisted accountants
Once a small business makes a list of different accountants, it should start contacting them. The business can call an accountant and discuss their services inline with its requirements. Online platforms also allow businesses to contact accountants using the platform.
Usually, a small business will need to ask the accountant questions related to their educational background, experience within the industry and how much they charge for their services. Similarly, the business will also need to enquire whether the accountant would be interested in providing services to the business.
In this process, a business can disregard any accountants that do not meet the requirements of the business. This process can serve the business as an initial screening tool. Once the initial screening is complete, the business can move forward with the process.
Interview prospective candidates
Once a small business has a list of prospective candidates for the accounting position, it can start interviewing those candidates. Interviewing candidates is one of the most important parts of the process. During this process, the business can also negotiate a better term for paying the accountant.
The interview process starts with the business making a list of all the requirements from an accountant. It can be helpful for the business to research all the tasks the accountant will need to perform. There are some obvious tasks, as mentioned above, such as bookkeeping and tax filing. However, some responsibilities of an accountant may not be as obvious, for example, preparing budgets or ensuring compliance with rules and regulations.
For the said requirements, the business must also prepare any questions which it needs the candidates to answer. These questions will help the business determine the competence of the accountant. Once these questions are ready, the business can finally interview the candidates in person to determine which candidate suits these requirements the best.
In-person interviews are of significant importance to both the business and the accountants. Through this interview, the business can not only determine whether the accountant is competent for the task but whether they will fit within the small business environment. For example, through the interview, the business can determine whether the accountant is comfortable with the management of the business and vice versa.
Hire an accountant
Once the interview process is over, the management of the small business can evaluate the performance of the accountants they have interviewed. Based on the performance, knowledge and experience of these candidates, the management can select the accountant that is going to fit into the business. This whole process will also ensure that the business finds a good accountant.
Finding the right accountant for a small business is very important. Due to the nature of the accounting function and small businesses, the business will need to find an accountant that is the right fit for the business. To find a good accountant the business will first need to seek accountants and contact them. Through this process, the business can make a shortlist of prospective candidates for the job. Then, the business can interview these candidates and hire a candidate can fit within the business.