Understanding the Right Time to Hire an Accountant


Accounting is a professional skill that you can outsource to suit the needs of your small business. Whether you’re planning on starting a business or you’re well established, knowing when to hire an accountant can be the difference between your business thriving or struggling. It can also be the difference between ensuring your ongoing tax compliance and having issues with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

This article highlights:

  • What an accountant for small business does.
  • The benefits of outsourcing your accounting.
  • How much outsourced accounting services cost.


What Does an Accountant Do?

A good small business accountant can help you at every stage of the development of your business, from startup through to selling or winding up. For example:


Business Buying and Valuation Advice

If you want to buy an established business, then it’s important to get a professional valuation done by an accountant to identify any potential financial issues and to ensure that you don’t pay too much if you do decide to buy it.


Providing Advice on the Best Business Structure

Different business structures (such as sole trader, partnership, company or trust) have different pros and cons, as well as different tax and financial reporting implications.

The right business structure depends on your specific situation and goals. Choosing the right one is important for startup businesses, but it can also be crucial for established businesses that may need to restructure to ensure their ongoing success.


Assistance with Developing Your Business Plan

Business plans with solid financial projections in them are much more useful documents to guide your actions and decision-making. A good accountant can really help you to develop realistic and accurate financial forecasts.


Implementing Accounting Systems, Processes and Software

This will help make your ongoing financial record-keeping and reporting much easier. It will also make identifying and analysing trends easier so that you can make good business decisions.


Providing Advice on Business Finance Needs

A savvy accountant for small business will be able to identify if you need finance to help grow your business. They can also help you with your business loan applications by demonstrating your capacity to make repayments via your financial statements.


Ensuring Your Ongoing Tax Compliance

Being a small business owner involves significant tax compliance obligations, including regular business activity statement (BAS) reporting, paying PAYG tax and compulsory superannuation for any staff that you employ, and submitting business tax returns.

Business tax laws are complex and constantly evolving. A good tax accountant for small business will provide you with expert advice and ensure your ongoing tax compliance.


Dealing with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO)

Your accountant can deal with the ATO on your behalf if necessary, including any potential audits. Having a professional in your corner who is familiar with both your business finances and ATO audits will provide you with peace of mind.


Providing You with Ongoing Accounting Advice

Useful ongoing advice that a small business accountant can provide includes financial management, budgeting and forecasting, as well as tax planning.

This advice can be invaluable in helping you to make good business decisions. It can also help you to grow your business.


Analysing and Identifying Trends, Opportunities and Risks

If you just see numbers when you look at your financial statements, then a good small business accountant can really add value by analysing and identifying business trends, opportunities and risks that those numbers reveal. You can then discuss and decide on appropriate actions to take.


Business Selling Advice

If you ever want to prepare your business for sale at the highest possible price, then an accountant can provide you with advice on  how to increase its value. They can also ensure that all your financial statements are up to date to present to potential buyers, as well as answer any queries from those buyers or their accountants.


The Benefits of Outsourcing Your Accounting

There are a range of benefits to outsourcing your small business accounting tasks at the right time.


Save Money

Unlike hiring a full-time or part-time accountant, when you outsource your accounting, you pay only for the services you need when you need them done.

The best accountants for small business also save you money by maximising your business tax deductions to minimise the amount of tax you need to pay.


Save Time

If you’re like most Australian small business owners, then you won’t have the time or the skills to do all your accounting tasks yourself. If you value your time (and you should), then it makes sense to outsource your accounting tasks. When you do, you will be able to spend more time where you can add the most value to your business.


Flexibility and Scalability

Outsourcing your accounting tasks gives you the flexibility to scale up or down as your business grows or your accounting needs change. As your business expands, so will your financial management responsibilities, so it’s crucial to get expert help to manage your cash flow and overall financial performance.


How Much Will an Accountant Cost

Outsourced accountants typically charge their clients an hourly rate, which can lead to cost surprises. However, if you’re looking for cost and budgeting certainty for your small business, then consider a fixed fee subscription model like the one we offer at Retinue.

Think of this subscription cost as an investment in your business because it will save you both money and time, as well as help your business to grow.


The Bottom Line

Ultimately, the right time to hire an accountant is whenever you need their professional financial expertise to help you manage and grow your business.


How We Can Help

Our experienced and professional accounting team at Retinue is passionate about helping small business owners to succeed.

We offer a full range of accounting services and can provide you with as much support as you need for a fixed monthly subscription fee.

Contact us today to get a free quote based on your specific business accounting needs.

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