While utilising do-it-yourself accounting software might help you keep track of your expenses, the advantages of hiring a skilled accountant go far beyond numbers crunching. They have the potential to be your company’s long-term financial partner, with intimate knowledge of not just how you’ll finance your next forklift but also how you’ll fund your children’s college tuition.

However, before you employ one, make sure you’re familiar with the four main areas of competence in a general accounting firm:

1. Advisory services for businesses:

Because an accountant should be familiar with your business environment, tax status, and financial records, it makes sense to enlist their assistance in putting all the pieces together and developing a business and personal financial strategy. 

Accountants can help with anything from insurance to growth (do you require business interruption insurance, or is it cheaper to lease a second location?). Simply by their viewpoint, accountants may offer a new level of understanding to the table.

2. Bookkeeping and accounting: 

Accounting and record-keeping are two essential aspects of the business. These are the most fundamental accounting concepts. While many business owners choose to handle their own day-to-day records, an accountant can assist you in setting up bookkeeping and accounting systems and teaching you how to utilise them. A sound system will allow you to assess profitability and adjust prices as needed. 

It also allows you to keep track of spending, create a budget, detect patterns, and save money on accounting services for financial statements and tax returns.

3. Advice about taxes: 

Accountants who help with tax difficulties generally specialise in one of two areas: tax compliance or tax planning. The term “planning” refers to the process of lowering your overall tax burden. The term “compliance” refers to following the tax laws to the letter.

4. Auditing: 

Banks frequently request these services as a condition of a loan. There are several degrees of auditing, ranging from merely generating financial statements to a full audit.

Why should you hire an accountant?

At any stage of your company’s development, hiring an accountant may be advantageous. The proper hiring may free up time for you to focus on growing your staff, expanding your client base, and increasing income, all while giving you peace of mind that your books are in good hands.

An excellent accountant’s contributions include:

  • Handling taxes and making sure your company follows the laws and regulations.
  • Monitoring your budget, cash flow, payroll processes, and other financial duties daily.
  • Creating accurate financial reports of the company to help the management in making more informed decisions.
  • Assisting with financial reporting by acting as a committed resource.
  • Identifying areas for development, improving present systems and financial practises.

What skills should you seek in an ideal accountant?

It makes sense to hire a full-time financial consultant if your firm has the cash and is poised for excellent business development. You will be able to relax easily knowing that a qualified professional is constantly monitoring your company’s financials.

If your company isn’t ready to recruit a new employee, collaborating with an outside accounting firm may be a good option. They will be able to handle the identical accounting responsibilities as an in-house accountant for a fraction of the price. 

Searching for the perfect accounting firm or accountant in London for your company while staying within your budget is not easy. 

Some of the skills that you should look for in an accountant are:-

1. An all-encompassing financial professional:

Rather than employing someone who specialises in bookkeeping or payroll, it is better to hire someone who can do everything. This way, you will not have to hire different types of experts for different jobs, and you will end up saving more money in the long run while not crossing your budget. 

2. Able to communicate the numbers:

Communication is crucial in any profession, but it’s more so for someone who is exclusively responsible for a company’s finances. Accounting’s complexities are difficult to understand for anyone who isn’t a skilled accountant. 

Many accountants can create reports and graphs, but qualified accountants should possess the ability to explain their significance to non-accountants in layman language too. 

Unless they can communicate the strengths and weaknesses of the business, the risk it might face in the future, the opportunities that it can grab, and other things to the business owner and management so that they can take action on it, it is of no use.

3. Relevant work experience:

You should seek a financial expert who has the relevant experience of working in the same sector in which your business is operating. Not hiring an accountant familiar with your industry or its laws and regulations might be a waste of money.

An excellent accountant would be conversant with the operations of your firm. They should have worked with firms in your industry before to be familiar with the typical prices and operational processes. 

You should also look for a financial specialist with experience working with firms at a comparable stage to yours. They should be aware of the possibilities and difficulties that lie ahead so that nothing can catch them off guard.

4. Ability to deal with the latest technological advancements:

Long gone are the days when all the accounting functions are performed manually. Accounting, like most professions, is undergoing a technological transformation. 

Accountants use modern software to do jobs more quickly through automation while also understanding their company’s or client’s finances. The accountant you decide to hire should be able to use advanced accounting software instead of relying on old-fashioned and conventional accounting methods.