When Should You Hire an Accountant for Your Small Business?
One pattern observed among small business owners is that they usually try to DIY most tasks, especially at the beginning of their business, mostly in the name of economy. However, trying to juggle highly differentiated roles is not only stressful, it’s also counterproductive. Your attention is divided into hiring, supervising, inventory control, accounting, bookkeeping, and payroll. Finance-related tasks can be especially time-consuming, but how do you know when it’s time to hire an accountant?
Below are signs which indicate when you need to get a good accountant on board or engage the services of an accounting firm:
1. You need to create a business plan
An accountant can help you come up with long-term financial projections through strategic business advice. Forecasting is critical to business plan creation, especially if you’re thinking of launching a new product or idea, planning to expand the business, or seeking funding or investments.
With an accountant, you can have an objective evaluation of business performance based on past and current performances. They can also ensure your business is legally compliant and help you structure your business appropriately based on your goals and access to financing.
2. You’re unsure about the status of your finances
Do you find yourself shaking your head when you calculate your expenses? Are sales up, yet you always seem to have a cash flow shortage?
Without clarity in your financials, you’ll never really know if your business is growing or barely surviving. But with an accountant-bookkeeper as your partner, you’ll have someone taking care of organising your books, keeping track of documentation, handling bank reconciliation, and so on.
They can examine your financial reports, make the necessary calculations, identify inefficiencies, and help cut costs. They can provide guidance in debt restructuring, reinvestment, and making major financial decisions.
3. You’re having difficulty with business growth
Business activity and growth are great, but it can also be a fragile, dangerous time when it grows too much, too soon.
An accountant can help you navigate the transition. They can provide valuable business advice and insights and guide you in identifying the best growth strategy for your business. They can also efficiently handle the additional financial and administrative pressures that accompany growth — that is, more people, more stores, and more customers.
4. You stress over tax time
If you find yourself dreading preparing your business activity statement (BAS), staying on top of your quarterly goods and services tax (GST) reporting obligations, and filing tax returns, it might be a good idea to engage an accountant.
You can depend on an accountant to keep you apprised on small business tax concessions you’re eligible for, and give advice on ways of maximising your deductions whilst maintaining compliance with tax laws. They’ll also be up to date on changing tax rules and regulations and know which accounting software can make tax-related tasks easier to accomplish.
5. You have no financial expert in your team
If you want to grow or expand your business, you’ll need to let go of the finance reins and let someone else handle the paperwork for you. With an accountant, you have someone who’s more than qualified to organise your books and manage the financial aspects of your business. This way, you’ll have time freed up for networking, finding investors, and actually running your business.
At the start of your business, you can probably get away with DIY-ing a few tasks. Finance work, however, is something that requires a lot of attention and is best handled by an experienced, reliable accountant.