It makes good sense to employ a professional to manage the accounting when your company has expanded past a certain level, so you can concentrate on running stuff. A good accountant, however, will do much more than just free up your time. Businesses employing good accountants can often benefit from a wide range of other services that help save money, mitigate risk, control enforcement, manage growth, and plan ahead. As a company owner, most of the major decisions would have a financial aspect, so it's only wise to discuss them first with the accountant.
What does an accountant do?
Here are some of the key ways in which an accountant can be a linchpin of your business:
1. Paying the right amount of tax
You don't want to pay more tax than required, but you'll be in trouble with HMRC if you get underpayment. You may therefore err on the cautionary side when it comes to your corporate tax return. With much greater confidence, an accountant can measure the costs and deductions, and therefore will be able to find considerable savings – thus preventing those costly errors.
2. Saving tax
An accountant remains up to date with tax laws, and he knows all the ways you can legally pay your tax bill. He or she may define valid tax-efficient techniques such as using government grants, deductions, investments, offsetting losses, or altering your business profits.
3. Improving cash flow
Managing cash flow is a crucial part of business which start-ups often neglect. A business will easily run into trouble if it doesn't have the cash ready to invest, no matter how lucrative it is on paper. A good accountant will ensure that your cash flow is high enough to protect against risks while increasing your investors and stakeholders' trust in you.
4. Setting up your business
Many business projects are struggling because the estimates and predictions have not been checked with rigor. When drawing up your business plan, an accountant will help you lay some firm foundations. They should give an impartial second opinion unclouded by political prejudice, and they will also be able to provide insightful insight into key areas like your business model. A business plan signed off by the accountant is one that is ready to go – and can make investors more appealing too.
5. Reducing your workload
When your company finally starts to take off, you'll need all the resources to manage day-to-day activities, rather than the finances. Similarly, as the company finances become more complicated, you would almost definitely need a professional to take responsibility for them.
6. Bookkeeping and financial reporting
Bookkeeping is an integral part of handling the finances of your company and a legal necessity is financial reporting to HMRC. As part of a complete package of services a successful accountant will provide both.
Larger companies, generally speaking, are subject to further government oversight. Compliance with these criteria will take up an immense amount of your time , and make simple and potentially very harmful errors. Perhaps an accountant will take your hands off this responsibility.
8. Funding for growth
Most companies would need additional financing at some point in order to expand. Securing funding from a bank or other source is a big bridge to cross-borrowers and investors want to believe that their money will be returned. Your accountant should prove invaluable to the relevant stakeholders in making a clear financial argument.
9. Growth management
Sudden development that you haven't prepared for can be as troublesome as too slow growth , resulting, for example, in all sorts of difficulties related to cash flow, payroll, staff or office space. A spurt of unmanaged growth can also knock you backwards. A good accountant will allow you to respond to unexpected growth quickly and efficiently, and turn it into what it should be: an advantage.
Companies of a certain size are expected to undertake a statutory audit – in which case an accountant is a must-have. But even a voluntary internal audit for a smaller company can be an ideal way to keep your business goals on track. This kind of audit reassures you that all is smoothly ticking over, and is also a perfect way to train you for a formal audit.
11. Buying or selling a business
M&A can be the fastest way to expand your company, or enter a new market. If you're thinking of buying up a competitor or a supplementary company, your first port of call should be an accountant. They must examine the practicalities and also look at the accounts of the target firm to ensure that everything is satisfactory.
12. Business advice
People forget that many accountants often act as company advisors. They bring a wealth of information deriving from dealing with customers from all walks of life, and an accomplished accountant would have seen most of the problems and challenges you may face. As a consequence, an accountant will provide your proposals with an impartial sounding-board, inform you of possible threats and alert you to opportunities.
Robert Arnone’s mission is to serve as the trusted advisor for business owners that helps them achieve their financial goals. By applying expert knowledge in accounting and financial best practices in a personalized fashion, our clients are able to plan for and more importantly, achieve, financial success. We offer these services at a value that large accounting firms can't afford by holding dear the values of Integrity, Service, and Value. Contact us today for accounting services that go beyond your expectations!