If you’re running a small business, you’re in control. You manage your staff, your services and you’re probably pretty smart at bookkeeping, too. So why should you need to hire a small business accountant, when you’re doing just fine without one, so far?
If much of your valuable time is taken up with routine financial affairs, it’s time you invested in some dedicated accountancy services. An accountancy service that specialises in small business will take on routine financial tasks expertly, professionally and reliably, giving you the time to focus on what’s important to you, such as growing your business. And it’s not just about bookkeeping services: a good small business accountancy service offers more than just the numbers!
Online accounting software gives start-ups the vital service of a business health check at any time, any place. The flexible 24/7 access to a range of business metrics such as cash flow and profitability means that you can check your financial position anytime with the confidence that it’s accurate and up-to-the-minute. With accurate, timely data, you’ll be able to make good, informed business decisions.
Are you familiar with the key business metrics that are the basis of business survival – things like cash flow, operating margins, and salary ratios? Knowing the right business metrics can mean the difference between success and failure. These powerful metrics will tell you whether your business is going up (or down) earlier than you might yourself realise. Accountants for small businesses will manage this complexity for you, providing you with the vital business information you’ll need to thrive, rather than just survive.
Businesses that survive are resilient: they’re agile and responsive to their external world. To be agile, you’ll need to continually scan the horizon for issues that affect your business - these could be new employment regulations, new payroll rules or issues about VAT, tax or company law. Horizon scanning takes time and expertise and if you take this on yourself, it’s just one more thing to think about. Horizon scanning is part of a good small business accountancy service – they’ll keep you safe.
The issue is – can you afford not to? Outsourcing non-core business activities has become the norm for years and with good reason. Add up the hours you spend on your finances and legals, as well as the opportunity cost of the things you can’t do while you’re doing the numbers and you’ll find that you’re already spending more than you think. Small businesses like yours often don’t need a full-time accountancy service – a few hours a week can be enough, and with cloud-based accounting software, you’ll always have an up-to-the-minute picture of your business financials at your fingertips. You’re still in control. It makes good business sense to hire accountancy services that specialise in small businesses: and it’s not just about saving money. With financial and legal expertise on tap, and routine operations outsourced, you’ve given yourself the time and the headspace to really take your business places.
Our expertise will save you time and money, and give you back the focus you need for your products, service and customer base. And it’s flexible – choose just one, some, or all of our special packages. Each package comes with expertise and excellent service as standard. And we’ll keep you up to date with legislation so you never have to worry about missing something important.
Don’t know the business structure that’s right for you? No problem. We’ll advise you on which structure will best serve your business goals and, when you’ve decided, we’ll arrange all the set up details. We’ll do the heavy lifting with the formalities while you sit back and work on your business strategy.
Many SMEs hate bookkeeping but we love it! Keeping your accounts in tiptop shape takes time and expertise so why not let us do the donkey work for you? We’ll take responsibility for your everyday accounting – expenses, invoicing, receipts, tax, audit trail, double-entry, journaling and much more – so that you’re freed up to do what you do best – grow your business.
Choose our Accountancy Package for accurate, timely, and expert annual accounts and financial statements for any audience: HMRC, Companies House or for banks when you’re looking for business finance.
Tax needn’t be a nightmare for anyone. No matter how simple or complex your business, we’ll optimise your tax position, reducing your tax burden and of course we’ll check if you’re due a tax refund. We’ll make sure that you’re claiming the tax reliefs that you’re entitled to, and we’ll prepare your tax returns for you – no more last minute rush!
Your staff are your biggest asset but sorting out the payroll implications will hoover up your time. And because you’re a great employer, you want to make sure that you get it right. Choose our payroll package and we’ll make sure that your staff are paid the right amount at the right time. We’ll deal with all the complexities like national insurance contributions and pension issues, P45s, joiners and leavers. Your staff deserve accurate payroll support.
It’s important that you choose the right insurance for your business – and there’s a dazzling array of choices. We’ll help you choose only the insurance that’s relevant to your business, and we’ll find you the best price, too.
If you’re a small business owner, you’ll have an amazing entrepreneurial spirit. You’re full of ideas about your products and services, and you want to grow your team so you can deliver the best. But don’t forget your finances. You may have the most innovative ideas in the universe, but without solid finances, you won’t survive. Think like a small business accountant – after all, that’s one of your roles. Develop a positive and dynamic attitude to your business finances with these seven best-practice tips:
At its simplest, accounting is just a tracking mechanism, but it’s important for robust finances that you track correctly. Make sure you stay on top of tracking your income and expenditure, and that you keep hold of receipts and other documentation that proves where the money comes from and where it goes. It’s easy to fall behind when you’re focusing on other aspects of the business, so stay disciplined, and schedule regular bookkeeping sessions.
It’s good practice to keep business and personal income and expenditure totally separate. Your finances can become very confusing otherwise. Get a bank and credit card account just for your business.
Once your business is growing, there will be transactions flying all over the place: cash, payables, receivables and the rest! It’s likely that you might need to delegate much of the work to your team. A good internal control system will prevent fraud and reduce errors, like duplication, and include:
Good internal control doesn’t mean you don’t trust your staff. Internal controls reduce mistakes and protect everyone.
If you’re not a finance professional, then it makes sense to outsource financial and accountancy tasks to the experts. A good small business accountant will offer a range of services, including quality accounting software. Hiring in the expertise gives you the peace of mind that your daily financial responsibilities are being dealt with expertly, but that’s not all. A good small business accountant will also help you with an array of other business services, such as tax and business planning, and even help you choose the best legal structure for you. It’s good practice to take advice from a small business specialist accountant – but make sure you choose a good one!
Because your finances aren’t your core business, it’s easy to push them way down your “to do” list when things get hectic. This is a common mistake but it’s a dangerous one. Your finances are a key part of the health of your business and, if you neglect them, you’re in big trouble. Prioritise working on your finances because your business survival depends on you knowing just where your business stands financially.
Automate everyday financial tasks like payroll, paying and issuing invoices, calculating depreciation or assessing cash flow. Automation gives you back your time, but this doesn’t mean you lose control. Cloud-based software with an up-to-the-minute financial dashboard lets you check your financial position in real time, whenever and wherever you want.
Every small business owner should gain a good understanding of financial jargon and the implications for their business. Take pride in understanding what’s under the financial bonnet of your business, because the more you know, the safer your business. These are just seven best-practice accounting principles to cultivate. If you’re confident in understanding and handling your business finances, you’ve given your business the best chance to succeed and grow.
You know when it’s time to hire small business accountant - you just don’t have the bandwidth or skills to trust that you’re doing your finances correctly. And maybe you feel that you’re missing out on some great opportunities for tax rebates or other goodies. So, how can you tell whether a small business accountant is the right one for you?
This question tests whether your potential small business accountant understands problems particular to your business sector. Although all small businesses will share many of the same issues, a construction business, for instance, has different financial pressures and responsibilities than a freelance hairdresser.
A well-established small business accountant with a long history, a loyal clientele and good testimonials can give you the confidence that they’re experienced and know what they’re doing. Don’t forget to ask for references and follow them up.
The right answer to this will depend on what you’re looking for. If you just want specialist tax advice or to outsource your payroll, then a specialist accountant will be a good choice. But if you’d like the bulk of your financial affairs outsourced, then check the accountant can provide all this expertly.
Make sure a potential small business accountant has a plan for client communications – for instance, can you call them anytime? Do they prefer email, phone or old-fashioned snail mail? Make sure this aligns with how you work best. When can you expect updates? And do they use cloud-based software which means you have 24/7 access to the full financial picture of your business?
It’s important to have a dedicated, named accountant responsible for your business. This gives you a point of responsibility – you don’t want to be passed from pillar to post when you have a question. Accountants are allowed to go on holiday so ask what the arrangements are for cover and for busy times of the year, e.g. when your accounts are due. Ask what qualifications your adviser has, too.
This question is designed to find out whether your potential accountant has some good ideas about how to really help your business grow; they may suggest the benefits of re-structuring or list some ways you can save money. You’re looking for an open, interested, business-like attitude rather than a “I just do the accounts” mentality.
It’s important to understand how your potential small business accountant charges for their services – you don’t want a nasty surprise when you check out their first invoice! For instance, do they charge you if you call them with a question? Some accountants charge on a sliding scale, while some charge by the hour or for a fixed fee. Make sure that their fee system is clear and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Financial regulations and other kinds of legislation are forever changing so you need to be confident that your potential small business accountant can scan the horizon for you so that don’t get caught out. Ask them how they keep up to date with what’s going on in your industry and with financial and legal regulations generally.