How to choose an accountant

Discussion in 'Accounts & Finance' started by DanMartin, Mar 28, 2008.

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  1. myblazee

    myblazee UKBF Newcomer Free Member

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    While choosing accountants we should be bit wise. First start with basic calculation question with real time examples. Next if he is good in it that ask bit more which is closely related to your business accounts. identify the solving ability. by this way select him.
    Posted: Jun 26, 2013 By: myblazee Member since: Jun 26, 2013
  2. Andaleeb

    Andaleeb UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    There are 5 steps to choosing the right accountant:

    Step 1: ARE THEY QUALIFIED? Although there are many good accountants without recognised qualifications, we would advise you to look for a Chartered or Chartered Certified accountancy practice. These professionals would have passed some very rigorous exams to prove their expertise. Also ask what their staff's qualifications are.

    Step 2: WHO ARE THEIR CLIENTS? You should visit the accountant's website to check what services they offer and who their clients are. Ask to speak to their clients to see how satisfied they are! Recommendation or referral from your friends or contemporaries can be also very useful.

    Step 3: DO YOU CLICK WITH THEM? Appointing an accountant is one of the important decisions you will ever make for your business. It's a long-term relationship and a good accountant should help your business grow. So, make sure you click. Ask them if they will keep in regular touch with you - not just at the year end! Make time to visit their office before signing up. It's the best way to assess the firm, their standards and practice environment. If you're offered an initial free consultation, it should not be a sales pitch!

    Step 4: HOW MUCH WILL IT COST? Seek value for money. Ask if their fees are fixed or variable. For small businesses, fixed fees will avoid nasty surprises. Ask for a written price agreement detailing the works covered. Don't choose your accountant by the cheapest quote. Often lower cost results in higher pain when it comes to professional service. Negotiate: the relationship should be a win win for you both.

    Step 5: HAVE THEY ANSWERED YOUR QUESTIONS? Ask them questions that you are currently facing in business. Think about how clear and easy their explanations are. You need to be able to understand not only what they do and how they do it but also any advice they give you and why. The solution they offer for your business problem must be optimal under the relevant context.

    It is important that you go through these steps before choosing your accountant.

    Best wishes,
    Posted: Jul 4, 2013 By: Andaleeb Member since: Jul 3, 2013
  3. joinuniverse

    joinuniverse UKBF Newcomer Full Member

    67 0
    In order to select a right accountant it's important to benchmark how much the average market charge for those services you require.

    I was charged on a company I had £2k/year for doing the End of year accounts and payroll for the only 2 employees of that company. We did all the invocing and so on. After we took over the payroll (easy with HRMC free sotare) the fees dropped to £1500/year this time only for the End of year accounts.

    Does that sound like a fair fee?
    Posted: Jul 26, 2013 By: joinuniverse Member since: Jul 24, 2013
  4. HBB new business team

    HBB new business team UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    32 2
    It all depends on whether you think the service is worth the money. Normally the amount of work accountancy practices do is hidden from your site. This can include finding errors, correcting them and in some cases reprocessing & checking all the years transaction.

    Lot's of small accountancy firms will attempt to undercut other firms offering you a ridiculously low price, the problem will be, generally the lower the price, the lower the level of expertise and support you will receive.

    If you think that you get what you are paying for then it's a fair price surely?
    Posted: Jul 30, 2013 By: HBB new business team Member since: May 15, 2013
  5. joinuniverse

    joinuniverse UKBF Newcomer Full Member

    67 0
    Hi HBB,

    Ideally I prefer to discuss about numbers not perceptions or feelings.

    I am trying to work out from your expertise what's the market average for a service of End of Year accounts for a corporate situation explained above.

    best regards,
    Posted: Jul 30, 2013 By: joinuniverse Member since: Jul 24, 2013
  6. charcole

    charcole UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    1 0
    I guess you must know exactly what you need before you look for an accountant, it's important that you know what you have to look for.
    Posted: Aug 2, 2013 By: charcole Member since: Aug 2, 2013
  7. cheaper accountant

    cheaper accountant UKBF Regular Full Member

    418 57
    Prices will vary between accountants. My view is that a basic set of accounts for a small business should be inexpensive. Take a look at my website for an idea of prices.
    Posted: Aug 2, 2013 By: cheaper accountant Member since: Oct 20, 2012
  8. ericbrown

    ericbrown UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    2 0

    "hehehe" It is a great solution.......;):(:)
    Posted: Aug 7, 2013 By: ericbrown Member since: Aug 7, 2013
  9. smithy55

    smithy55 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    20 0
    I have meetings with two potential accountants next week. What questions should they be asking me and what should I ask them (apart from the obvious fees etc)?

    What should I look out for?
    Posted: Aug 20, 2013 By: smithy55 Member since: Aug 6, 2013
  10. Bob

    Bob UKBF Big Shot Free Member

    3,668 929
    Elaine Clark of who used to be a regular contributor to the forum has published an aide memoire listing many of the questions you should ask. Hope this helps :)
    Posted: Aug 20, 2013 By: Bob Member since: Jul 24, 2009
  11. sirearl

    sirearl UKBF Legend Free Member

    29,807 6,643
    Best way to choose an accountant is to do what the multinationals do and find one that used to work for HMRC.;)
    Posted: Aug 20, 2013 By: sirearl Member since: Apr 23, 2007
  12. milesmaxx

    milesmaxx UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    1 0
    An accountant plays a very important role in a business.An accountant should be with good skills and quality of his accounting.Below are some qualities of accountant:
    1) He should have through knowledge of the basics of accountancy.
    2) He should be sharp, decent, confident and well managed.
    3) He should be able to do multiple tasks simultaneously without losing the focus.
    4) Above all, he must be honest for his work and for his company.
    5) He must be a great learner and willing to grab knowledge
    6) Your accountant must be able to manage himself according to situations and should be ready to learn from all kinds of experiences.
    7) An accountant must have good concentrating skills and he should stay focused on his work even after distractions.
    8) He should be well trained and familiar with the ups and downs of the finance world.
    9) Time management is also very important in professional world. An accountant must be able to complete his task in the given time.
    Miami Beach Florida Real Estate
    Posted: Aug 26, 2013 By: milesmaxx Member since: Aug 24, 2013
  13. joinuniverse

    joinuniverse UKBF Newcomer Full Member

    67 0
    It doesn't exist the best way to choose an accountant. It will always depend on your circumstances, for example:

    - company size
    - company industry
    - your current knowledge/expertise
    - Time you have been in business
    - etc

    You will always need to know your business upside-down anyway. If you are starting then cost would be heavy weight factor, while if your revenues are over 1M you will have plenty of expertise to decide which accountant will you go for, and why.

    For SMEs I think it's a secondary issue, what you need to focus is on generating sales, profits to be more specific, and keep your accountancy and other costs to the minimum.
    Posted: Sep 2, 2013 By: joinuniverse Member since: Jul 24, 2013
  14. Natbiz

    Natbiz UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    4 1
    It is easy, yet little difficult to find an accountant. If you keep some major tactics in mind first then it would be easy for you to select a good one.

    1: List all major services that you need.
    2: Determine their cost, whether monthly or hourly fees.
    3: Who will be you working with, an individual or a big firm.
    Posted: Sep 18, 2013 By: Natbiz Member since: Sep 13, 2013
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