One thing every business can benefit from, regardless of its size, is the service of a competent accountant. But small businesses, in particular, can gain a lot from hiring the right accounting personnel. A good in-house accountant will be able to oversee the necessary tasks of bookkeeping, preparing financial statements, and calculating the business’s tax returns. But in addition, they can also advise the company’s other decision-makers and contribute some important perspective into the company’s overall growth.
That said, business owners from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) should pay extra attention when hiring a new accountant. It’s an issue of recruiting top talent, getting reliable accounting software for them to work with, and aligning their services with the company’s mission-vision. If you’re an entrepreneur from an SME who’s in need of an accountant, read the following tips for hiring the right one.
Find Someone Knowledgeable
First, you will want to hire personnel with the right credentials and the right amount of knowledge for the position. Though it’s possible to onboard a bookkeeper, it’s a better idea to hire a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) who is accredited by your country’s professional association of CPAs.
Along with foundational tasks like bookkeeping, you will be able to entrust a CPA passer with the more complex accounting processes involved in your business. These include calculating your tax liabilities, analyzing your company budget, and overseeing your financial audits. The more knowledgeable they are, the more valuable they will be in establishing good financial housekeeping and financial credibility for your small business. Both are necessary for you to excel in the tough and competitive field of entrepreneurship.
Find Someone Adaptable
Next, you will want to find someone whose accounting approach is nimble and up to the times. They shouldn’t be scared to learn about new technologies, like the most up-to-date accounting software. They should also be ready to face modern challenges in doing business, like adjusting to a remote setup and transacting with concerned agencies online.
As someone who heads an SME in the current business environment, you likely know the value of being flexible and thinking forward. Hire an accountant who shares these values and whose approach to their work will allow you to modernize your business even further.
Find a Good Fit for Your Industry
Accounting is a discipline that matters in every field, and most accountants are trained to be generalists. However, it may be in your best interest to hire an accountant who’s familiar with the ins and outs of your industry. That familiarity will allow them to anticipate special financial requirements for your business, or tax issues that often come up in your field.
For example, if your business is involved in ecommerce, hire an accountant who’s kept tabs on the industry. If your SME produces certain goods that demand excise taxes, like soda or alcohol, find an accountant who has experience in preparing the forms. A good accountant is an asset to any SME, but an accountant who’s already oriented with the type of business you do proffers you an exceptional advantage.
Find Someone with Great Communication Skills
Accountants are primarily hired for their hard skills, and most of these pertain to their facility with numbers. But a great accountant will also know how to deploy their soft skills, especially those that involve communication.
An accountant’s communication skills will prove useful for an SME, especially in the area of problem-solving. If your accountant knows how to explain complicated financial issues in layman’s terms, you will be able to choose the right accounting solution together. They can help you increase your own financial know-how, as well as boost your confidence in your decision-making abilities for the company.
Find Someone Who Can Grow with You
Companies that are still starting out are better off with a leaner workforce, and thus have the option of hiring a part-time accountant. But if you’re in this for the long haul and you have plans to expand your business, look for a full-time in-house accountant who can be part of this growth.
Find an accountant who can assist you in fulfilling “bigger-picture” goals for your business, such as long-term tax planning and improvements to your accounting processes. Among all other aspects needed for your business’s growth, your financial matters should be among your top priorities. That said, hire an accountant who will help you build a rock-solid financial foundation.
Final Words: Empowering Your Accounting Personnel
Once you’ve hired the right accounting personnel, it should be your goal to empower them to do their best at the job. Help them acclimatize to their new business environment and provide them with a toolset that bolsters their accounting abilities. If their onboarding goes well, you’ll be on your way to achieving good financial housekeeping practices for your company and, ultimately, the business growth that you deserve.