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How an accountant can help your small business succeed

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Read time: 3 minutes

Owning a business is hard.

And yet many small business owners still try to handle everything themselves. Business planning? Check. Cash flow, revenue analysis, financial projections? Check—and double-check. (And triple-check, just to be sure.)

If you’re an overworked business owner, you might defend your choice by saying:

“Hiring someone for all those functions costs money. I can’t afford that yet.”

Understandable. But what would you say if there was a way to have these functions handled for you? A way to free you up to concentrate on growing your business—and all for an affordable fee?

Accounting advisory services: A CFO…without the CFO

You may have thought of an accountant as someone you only see at tax time, but a growing number of accounting firms offer other valuable business services. And one of the most useful and in-demand for the small business owner is advisory services.

Think of advisory services as filling the function of a CFO, without the salary and benefits. Just like a CFO, an accounting professional can focus on the bigger picture to help you look to the future—monitoring the short- and long-term financial health of your business and guiding you with strategic business planning and financial projections. 

It’s a great compromise for the business owner who prefers to do what they do best—be an entrepreneur and grow their business—instead of toiling over the day-to-day minutiae of running the business.

Your advisor/accountant meets with you regularly to discuss financials and offer insight into your data via reports on budgeting and tax planning/minimization. She or he will also help you track and analyze revenue and profit, general and payroll expenses, credit card fees, cash flow, and industry-specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Because ongoing analysis is critical to the long-term success and sustainability of your business, these regular meetings help keep your business goals on track.

What else can an accountant do for my business?

Your advisor/accountant can help you answer a number of important questions, such as:

  • Which business structure (sole proprietor, LLC, S-Corp, etc.) works best for my business?

  • Which tax deductions can I claim?

  • What does <insert new tax law here> mean for me and my business?

  • How can I improve my budgeting and cash flow management?

  • What’s the best way to handle my personal and business tax returns?

Down the line, accounting professionals can also offer vital services like payroll and bookkeeping to a growing business, as well as advise you on the accounting software that works best for your situation. Plus, they’re well-versed in business situations that affect different phases of a business’s life—from improving internal controls and creating persuasive financial presentations for loan applications or potential investors to mergers and acquisitions, succession planning, and exit strategies. 

If you’d like to free up your time to concentrate on growing your small business, ask us how we can assist you with advisory services that can give you a fresh perspective—and keep you focused firmly on the future.