Ten Questions To Ask When Hiring An Accountant
When it comes to finding an accountant, there are many challenges that you have to take into consideration. You want someone who would be around for the long term and understand the kind of work you are doing. While anyone can handle accounting, and the system can be managed individually, you want to be working with someone who would have more than a basic understanding and would be more of a value add than just getting your taxes filed on time.
There are many benefits to working with a professional; they know the functioning of the industry and the changes to the tax law that could benefit the company. Their primary purpose is to help their clients save money when they are getting through the process. We had many clients tell us that they were unsure about what they should look for when they are picking an accountant, and we responded that it is a mix of things. Here are some of the primary pointers we put down to help get through the process.
1. What experience do you have?
You have to make sure that they have been working in the industry for some time. Many changes take place annually, so you should work with someone who keeps up with the changes and is at the top of their game. They should be keeping up with the changes. If they have experience in the industry, you would know that they are not experimenting on you and know about your industry and can make changes in return to benefit you.
2. How long have you done this type of work?
While experience might also be connected to the number of industries they work in, they should have been working on taxes for some time. When it comes to the rules, there are many rules, additions, and changes that might be added annually. They have to make sure they know what they are getting through and can adapt to those changes without feeling like they are figuring it out as they move along.
3. What will the monthly rate be?
You should find out their costing right off the get-go. Some companies handle their fees based on a percentage cut, while others charge a flat fee, and you should know about the specifics of both when you are getting through the process. You would be in an uncomfortable position if you were unsure about their cost and found out that it is not what you thought it would be at the very end.
4. What will you need me to supply to get going?
You should ask them about the type of information they need, and you should be able to provide it to them so that they can get started at the earliest. Many companies connect with your bank and get the account statements they need to assist, and others would tell you what they need so you can source it. Additionally, some companies would teach someone on your team to handle some of the processes, while others might do that in-house. Depending on the type of approach you use, you should pick the right one. Many would want to know how the systems work, and others would want to pay someone to handle them.
5. Will my personal information be secured?
Most companies make sure that your personal information is secure because it is a crime if that information is found in the private domain. You should still ask them how they plan on handling the data they are receiving so that you are on the same page as them. Additionally, when it comes to sending information, it should be done on a secure server, which makes it easier. Most email is now encrypted, which makes that process simple.
6. How often will I get financial statements from you?
Ideally, after having your books in order and going through and marking out all the payments to be made, we would provide everything for verification before filing at the end of the year, in time for tax season. Unfortunately, this could not be done sooner because we needed all the entries that were mentioned in the account statement. We also have a system where we assist someone else in the team to handle and reconcile the books because the process might be easier for them.
7. Will you help me understand what my financial statements tell me about how my business is doing?
When it comes to working with clients, we are more than happy to explain what they should be doing and how much business they would need for everything to be in the green. There are many changes they have to get through, depending on the industry they are in and we also talk to them about investments. Additionally, we make sure they are filing and handling their taxes properly to avoid penalties or fines.
8. Do you prepare tax returns too?
We have a team that works on and prepares tax returns. We would also tell someone on our client's team to assist with specific information to ensure we are on the same page. Sometimes the process is a lot better when it is handled by someone else. Depending on the amount of work needed from my team, we would have a different charge sheet. There are times when clients provide us with most of the information that makes the process easier, and we would put a different equation with them.
9. Do you offer business consulting services too?
While we prefer assisting with tasks like this, for the most part, we do not have a professional business consulting team. We assist with the process from the point of view of taxation, which makes it a lot easier.
10. Do you have a non-disclosure agreement?
We have non-disclosure agreements for all our clients and make sure that their information is protected and safe. There are many challenges with NDAs, and we have our legal team to assist in most of the paperwork. When working with our clients, we want them to be safe, comfortable and get through processes with ease.
If you need an accountant in Livonia, MI, connect with us at Accurate Accounting and More. We have worked in this line for some time now and have a decent understanding of accounting and bookkeeping so we can assist our clients in the best way possible. There were many challenges with the various industries that our clients worked in, but we made sure that we understood them in great detail to address their concerns and assist them better. If you are looking for a better understanding of the services we provide, please click here. If you want to get in touch with us or think we can assist with your requirement, please click here.