As your business grows, you may need to hire a certified public accountant (CPA) to handle your accounting processes. You must do this carefully, and there are some things that you should consider first. You’ll need to think carefully about important issues such as where your accountant is located, how they will divide your work, what type of accounting software they will use, and how much you’re able to budget for CPA services.
It’s in your best interest to have an experienced and capable person responsible for one of the most critical areas of your business – your finances. Finding the right CPA will save you time and money year after year. Here are some things you should think about when choosing a CPA for your business:
Find a CPA Who Understands Your Unique Business Needs
Your CPA should be well-versed in accounting processes for businesses of your size and industry. Numerous things could go wrong if your CPA doesn’t understand the nuances of your operations. The CPA you choose should be familiar with the regulations and financial processes applicable to your unique organization. Always look for a CPA firm that is willing to work with you and appreciates your company’s specific operational needs.
Figure Out the Accounting Services You Need Before Hiring
Ask yourself what your business needs are before you hire a CPA. You may need someone to process your invoices and payments, pay your taxes, create your financial statements and budgets, or manage other key financial tasks. Before you start the hiring process, create a list of services you and your business need now and services you’ll need down the road.
Consider Other Qualifications When Hiring a CPA
There is a lot more to accounting than just getting the numbers right. CPAs understand complex financial concepts very well, but it’s also important that they can explain them clearly in layman’s terms. It’s important to look beyond the information that is on a candidate’s resume and focus on additional aspects, such as their ability to communicate clearly with you.
Your CPA will work very closely with your employees to implement accounting processes and manage financial documentation. In addition to qualities like reliability and attention to detail, Your accountant needs to be able to communicate and coordinate with others.
It used to be necessary to have your company accountant located near where you operate. But nowadays, many businesses and accountants work remotely, so it may be more convenient to find someone who can operate virtually. Using cloud-based accounting tools, you and your accountant can access identical data in real-time from the same platform, no matter where you are.
It all comes down to which accountant you think will work best for your company and personal working style. If you prefer to communicate virtually or frequently travel for work, your accountant could be based anywhere in the world. But if you prefer to talk face-to-face and would like to be able to meet with your accountant at your office, you’ll need to look for accountants who work in your area or who travel to your business location from time to time. Regardless of location, ensure that your CPA has a thorough knowledge of all the tax laws that apply to your company.
The Bottom Line
Before you choose an accountant, carefully consider all your business’ accounting needs, from scope of service to professional certifications. Do you need assistance with financial reporting and long-term financial planning, or do you mainly need help during tax season? Choosing the right CPA is an investment in your business’ short-term efficiency and long-term growth. Make the decision carefully and take your time talking to candidates about how they can help your business thrive.