Finding an accountant that is prepared to assist with financial analysis of your business plan, maintain your accounting system and provide you with advice on the potential for business growth; is one of the most important factors to starting a business. So it’s well worth taking your time to identify a professional that understands your business, your industry and you. Although there are numerous experienced accountants that have the relevant skills, experiences and qualifications, a good accountant can usually be identified by the following:
- Has great people skills;
- Knows your industry;
- They will assist you to set up a simple book keeping system that is compatible with the systems that they use;
- Will not charge you for a quick telephone call and or regular email;
- Able to remind you of important financial reporting deadlines. This could be as simple as a regular email alert system;
- Provides updates on recent changes within the industry and government that will affect your business in the future;
- Happy to explain financial terminology in simple day-to day language;
- Available to discuss your short, medium and long term strategy openly and objectively;
- They have all the necessary accountancy credentials in place;
- They have a policy of being open and honest;
- They will provide an estimated bill of what they foresee their fees to be in advance, as this will help in preparing your cash-flow forecast;
- Clear terms and conditions of trade are provided prior to engagement.
Remember that although you have an accountant the onus is on you to ensure that all HMRC paperwork and payments are submitted on time. The HMRC might have questions arising from any documents submitted on your behalf by your accountant. It is your responsibility to ensure that these are answered without delay and to the satisfaction of HMRC.
Take your time to identify an accountant that meets your business needs.
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