We have a terrible proclivity in this country for settling on the first professional we run into without much thought at all; we pick our doctor based on who is closest to our home and our dentist is usually whoever will accept us as a patient, the solicitor we use tends to be a case of opening the Golden Pages or Google and unfortunately there is little more thought given when it comes to a new business picking its accountant, and yet, especially for the small business, this is a relationship of vital importance.
It is not enough to go with a recommendation from a friend, with out first looking at all options; accountants differ widely in temperament, skill-set and specialty and it is crucial that when entering into a business relationship that will, if successful, last the life of your business, you choose carefully and well.
So, how does one go about finding the ideal accounting professional for the job, here are our Top Tips for making a good choice:
Believe it or not, it is possible to call yourself an accountant without a professional qualification, unlike a doctor or dentist anyone can set themselves up in the job, so, do make sure that you choose a qualified accountant. Your accountant should be a member of an accepted professional body. These bodies hold their members to account in the event of bad practice, and so you’ll be afforded some protection if things go wrong.
Accountants are all very different, so look at what your business actually needs from the relationship; if you are a small business and you require a degree of hand-holding, don’t opt for a practice that specialises in multi-nationals. It is wise to have a list of your ‘must haves’ and look for the accountant that ticks most of your boxes.
There is no reason at all that you must become a client of the first accountant you speak to, it is probably prudent to explore your options and obtain quotes from more than one, however, don’t get carried away with the process, it will be counterproductive to gather quotes from too many firms as you’ll end-up drowning in unhelpful information, perhaps limit your quotations to three or four well chosen candidates.
Very much more than just a business relationship, it is important that you actually like your accountancy team; they’ll be advising you on some pretty vital stuff and so you have to be able to:
a) trust them enough to take their advice and
b) feel comfortable enough with them to be completely candid about your finances.
So choose people you click with, it is not unprofessional to be somewhat instinctive about your decision.
Give yourself enough time to make this important decision and award it the respect it deserves; waiting until the last minute to look for an accountant will no doubt pressurise you into a panicked choice. If you are setting-up in business it should be right at the top of your ‘to do’ list. A good accountant can advise on so much more than just your end of year accounts and so it is worth having one in place right from the get go.
Finding the perfect accountant is not down to luck, you will need to give it some thought and investigation; but finding the right accountant can be the difference between great business support and advice and none at all, so it is certainly worth the effort.
To find out how we can help your business visit call us today for a no obligation chat to see if we are a good fit for your business.
If you need a Dublin based accountant to look after your accounting, bookkeeping, management accounts or other financial related business needs. Then click here now to call us here at Kilcoyne Accountants for a discussion regarding your requirements.