Many companies keep teams of accountants on staff, but small businesses don’t normally need the day to day services of even one part-time accountant. The solution is to hire an accounting firm on a contract basis. Choosing the right accountant is important for your business, as each industry has different tax and compliance laws they need to adhere to. So it’s vital to choose wisely. Here are some things to consider before making your decision:

What type of Accounting Software do you use

Make sure your prospective accountant has software that will work with your system. Most accounting software can export data into a standard format, but there may be compatibility issues that arise. Make sure your prospective accountant can handle any data access or transfer problems.

Location

Determine if you need an accountant that’s local? With today’s technology most accounting tasks can now be done in the cloud or online. You can simply upload them to a cloud-based server or encrypt and email your accounting records. The accountant then runs the numbers and responds with the results. However, meeting with your accountant can still be very important for some small business owners.

Finding Your Ideal Accountant

The best way to find accountants with the necessary experience or industry you’re in is to tap into your social network. Ask industry associates, business partners, and others in your field whom they recommend. If you don’t have anyone to turn to, start by searching for accountants that specialize in your field. For example Holdsworth & Co. specializes in Dental, Veterinary, Treatment Centers, and Small Businesses. Others may just specialize in Taxes or service so many different fields that they don’t completely understand your needs.

Associations/Certifications

Make sure to find an accountant with the certified public accountant (CPA) certification. They must pass the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination, plus any state-level education requirements. In many states, only accountants who have passed these requirements can utilize CPA in their title. The exceptions are North Carolina, Kansas, and Arizona. Most CPAs are members of a state-level CPA association or the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Members must meet the organization’s professional standards, educational requirements, and code of ethics.

Your Due Diligence

Accounting firms come in all sizes, from large firms to sole proprietors. Your accountant will have access to sensitive information, so taking your time when making a selection is important. Interview candidates, don’t be afraid to ask about their level of experience, education and client references in your industry.

Choosing an accountant is a vital step in the growth of your business. Utilizing these guidelines can help you make the right choice. Holdsworth Chadd Fuller CPAs is your partner in providing full accounting services from bookkeeping to tax and financial guidance. Contact Us for a free consultation!