If you are bootstrapping or starting a small business on a limited budget, you have probably spent some time trying to figure out where you can cut costs and do more on your own to stretch the funds you have available.
One area you may consider doing it yourself instead of hiring it out is accounting. If you have an accounting background and a solid understanding of business finances, this may be a good place to cut costs. However, if you lack experience in managing the books of a business and expect to learn as you go, you should think twice. Managing your own accounting system incorrectly can hurt your business not only now, but also in the long-term.
Below is a rundown of the things an accountant can do for a small business owner. Review the list carefully, especially if you're still unsure why an accountant may be a good resource to add to your small business team.
When you start a business, there are many actions you need to take and systems you need to set up to create the foundation for a successful business. An accountant can help by:
When you are ready to grow your business, your accountant can be an integral resource that provides advice and helps you manage the process. An accountant can also:
These are just some of the ways accountants can work with small business owners. You can opt to hire an accountant for all of your financial activity, or you can choose a combined approach that limits his or her hands-on activity, reducing the expense. For example, you can hire an accountant during the start-up phase and have him/her handle your annual reporting, but work with a bookkeeper to manage your books on a regular basis. A bookkeeper and an accountant can form a very efficient accounting team for your small business.
The most important thing you can do when it comes to your business finances is to recognize when you need to enlist the help of a professional, and then find an accountant who will help maintain the fiscal health of your business.