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I want to change Accountants. What to consider when changing Accountants?

Most young business owners start thinking about changing their Accountants within first couple of years in business.

If you are thinking right now, ‘I want to change Accountants’, what to consider when changing Accountants? Or how to change an accountant? You should first ask yourself why change your Accountant?

I receive enquiries all the time from clients wanting to change their existing Accountants. Some of the usual reasons given are:

  1. Accountant Cost too much
  2. Accountants are not very communicative or when they do the cost goes up
  3. I was fined for something and I thought my Accountant was supposed to take care of everything so I don’t get fines

Interesting thing is that after doing my due diligence I send half the people back because I don’t see a problem with their existing Accountants for the services they’re hired to provide.

My objective of this quick blog today is to make people reconsider before they change their Accountants which can be a bad decision for the business.

The main issue as in any relationship is ‘expectation’, which is often not right due to client’s lack of knowledge and understanding of business accounting and finance.

We must be clear about one thing that Not having a basic understanding of your business Accounts and compliance requirement is not an option for a business owner.

My first recommendation is that to take control; do not delegate responsibility because it is always company director’s responsibility to run the company following the laws.

Learn the basics of business Accounts, know the recording system, your Profit & Loss and Balance Sheet and HMRC and Companies House requirements. If you really cannot do that then either don’t go into business or find a partner who understands business language.

Any successful business owner whether studied in business school or not, will have a good understanding of financial statements and their Return on Investments. Some very successful business owners in the world did not even finish school but they knew their numbers and the system of how it all works.

Many of us watch Dragon’s Den these days and I really enjoy watching Duncan Bannatyne, who left school with no GCSE. He easily rips apart business plans of young entrepreneurs who lack financial understanding.

Secondly, the cost is never a good reason to change. While there is a Fixed cost service offered in the market, there is no such thing as fixed cost. If it takes longer the cost will be higher, Accountant will increase the fee next time if they can’t this time. Like your good employees you give pay rise every year to retain them, you should think of good Accountants in a same way and try to retain them.

In my experience cheap always cost more.

The next question is; what is a good reason to change your Accountant? There are many including the one that will reduce your cost significantly, but I will explain in my next blog.

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