Your accountant is one of the most important people within your business. That’s why it’s important to determine not only what you expect from your accountant prior to appointing them, but also know how you can get the most out of them once they’re part of your team.
But how exactly can you do this?
How can you get the most out of your accountant?
Hire the right fit for you and your business.
Getting the most from your accountant relies on one thing – them having an understanding of your business and its specific needs. If an accountant doesn’t, it makes it difficult for you to work together as there will be a gap in knowledge of what you really need.
Many accountants specialise in specific industries, but others are experts in certain sized businesses such as start-ups or larger corporations, so always ensure your appointed accountant is matched to the size of your business.
As you can understand, similar businesses are likely to face similar issues, which is why getting an accountant who understands your business is beneficial. Not only will they will be experienced in identifying and mitigating risks but they’ll also have a wealth of knowledge about the challenges you face.
Communication is Key
Ultimately without communication, your accountant cannot perform at their best.
This works both ways. You need to have a clear channel of communication from day one to allow you to discuss what it is you are in need of and what you expect from each other.
Obviously as your business grows your needs will change too but setting out a framework of expectations at the beginning of your relationship means no wires will be crossed, and expectations will only be met and hopefully exceeded.
Stay up to date with deadlines
Accountants make it their mission to ensure you meet deadlines and remain compliant, but even when the leg work is done for you, you’ll need to keep in mind deadlines that require your input.
Whilst it is your accountant’s responsibility to ensure you meet these deadlines, they need things from you in order to meet those deadlines for your business.
To ensure your business remains compliant, you have to support your accountant yourself, for example by getting all paper they may need across to them well before the deadline. This way, they’ll have sufficient time to meet the deadlines for you.
Create your business plan together
This brings all of the previous points together. Your business plan is something that you should be returning to on a semi-regular basis, to touch base and look at further projections and goals. Having your accountant on board for this can be extremely beneficial for your business. It helps you get the most from your accountant because it gives them a valuable insight into your business and where it is set to go.
Having your accountant on hand when doing your business plan is greatly beneficial to you as they’ll likely have experience with other businesses at the same life stage as you. This means they will have invaluable insight into the potential hurdles your business may face.
Multi-access cloud software
Cloud accounting software has become the norm now due to streamlined processes and the benefit of convenience.
Allowing your accountant access to your cloud software services means they can have real-time access to your documents and paperwork, thus increasing efficiency. The greater insight they have into the financial state of the business, the better.
Make use of their network
An accountants’ network is often widely cast. From working in many industries and alongside other sectors such as lawyers and bankers, their network could be invaluable to you and your business.
There’s no need to be coy when it comes to asking your accountant to help with connections. They are likely to have had many introductions with people across multiple industries, meaning they are able to give reliable recommendations on who may fit your needs.
Even when it comes to general industry connections, your accountant may be able to make introductions to fellow business owners who may prove themselves to be vital connections of your own in time.
These are just a few ways in which you can ensure you are getting the most out of your accountant.
Accountants are highly professional people and ultimately want the best for you and your business, but in order for them to deliver second to none services, they need some assistance from you to be made fully aware of your business needs.
Want to work in partnership with one of our experienced accountants? Get in touch.