How well do you and your accountant know one another? Do you only communicate with them once a year of taxes? If so, you are drastically undervaluing your accountant! An accountant could be, and should be, your most trusted business ally and advisor. Check out this list of surprising ways you can utilize your very talented accountant!
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1. Competitive Analysis. In order to perform better than the competition, you need to know where you stand. As a whiz with numbers, your accountant can compare your sales volume, market read, overhead and production costs and staffing costs with others in the industry. He or she can also give you an accurate and honest idea of how you compare with pricing and profitability. This information is essential because it gives you a competitive advantage. It provides you with opportunities to cut costs, up your production and spend more time training skilled employees so turnover rates are lower than average.
2. Budgeting, Forecasting, and Growth. You should absolutely enlist the services of your accountant to help set achievable budgets and revenue targets this year. After working with your business for years, your accountant will be an expert in matters relating to your business and market position. In addition to identifying costs and forecasting sales, they can help you create a realistic budget based on your business’s needs and goals.
When it comes to your budget; your accountant can likely comb through your expenses to find some fat to trim. They can even utilize the previously mentioned competitive analysis project to make smart budgeting suggestion, and accurately forecast growth and revenue.
3. Advising on pricing for goods and services. Price points for your goods are difficult to determine. Set them too high, and no one will buy from you. Set them too low, and you could potentially kill your business. Your accountant can help the business achieve goals without jeopardizing your company’s future. They can advice advise on hiring matters relating to choosing a freelancer or a full time position, based on your company’s budget and finances.
4. Helping plan exits from the company. A succession strategy is a necessity for every business owner. An accountant can provide you with specific information about tax compliance, business valuation, due diligence and estate planning to streamline and optimize the process.
5. Accounts Receivable Management. Keeping track of your accounts receivable can be hard to juggle with the rest of your business responsibilities. If you’re not ready to hire a dedicated team for this department, utilize your accountant! With technology like our F|G Receivables Manager, you and your accountant can easily keep track of your AR, and make a little extra cash by successfully tracking down past due invoices too! Your accountant can monitor and alert you as soon as an account requires attention or advise you on consistently troublesome business relationships. With the app- they can even go about collecting those past due payments for you! Check our website for a listing of our Certified AR Specialists to help!
6. Partnership Suggestions. Your accountant is a professional within the business industry, and they likely could name a company or two who would make ideal business partners for you. Whether you would join up for a co-branded marketing campaign or perhaps a business who’s services could greatly aide your bottom line, your accountant likely has all the best connections and knowledge- use them!
7. General Consulting. Your accountant can also, if they have the time, serve as your general financial consultant. You can utilize them to weigh in on specific projects, hiring, product improvements, growth strategy- absolutely anything with financial implications. They are a master of all things financial and numbers after all!
If you’re in the market for a new accountant, interview them the way you would an employee. Learn more about their professional background and credentials to see how many different ways they could be of use to you. Ask how available they are to answer questions on a consulting basis, or how willing they might be to provide extra services such as these. Most importantly, make sure you and your accountant mesh well together in terms of communication styles and expectations. The last thing you want to do is hire someone who you can’t trust as a valuable member of your business team.