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Using a professional accounting firm to prepare your financial statements and tax returns is always a good idea, however when considering what firm to use, there are some areas to consider that set some firms apart from others.
Regular professional development as an individual and throughout the organization is built into the culture of the best accounting firms. While not every accountant knows everything about tax and accounting, it is important that your accountant takes an effort to keep up to date with the changes in tax legislation and financial reporting. Where knowledge may be specialized, your accounting firm should have access to this knowledge within their firm or through a network to refer you to.
Consider a firm that provides ongoing monthly and annual training to their professional staff in the areas of tax and accounting and one with access to an award winning network.
Innovative technologies are making a significant impact in the accounting industry and you will want your accountant to be on top of this. Skilled knowledge in leading bookkeeping software will allow automated entries of your bookkeeping data from bank and credit card feeds so that your professional advisor can spend more time on providing professional advice than data entry.
Providing information to your accountant and having access to the information that has been prepared for you should be done securely and with simplicity. Fast, high quality and efficient cloud collaboration is a convenience that you should look for from your professional advisor.
Consider a firm that has experts in bookkeeping automation, high caliber document management, up to date accounting and tax software, subscriptions to tax research, financial statement analysis tools, and retirement and estate planning programs. This should be combined with cloud-based document exchanges in a highly secure environment.
A quick turnaround on your files is the mark of an organized accounting firm. An accountant that sits on your file without action for months at a time may be a sign of disorganization. And an accountant should be organized. Your concerns should also be handled efficiently. All firms get busy from time to time, so this may include a note for when you will receive a reply or that someone is looking into the matter.
Consider a firm with a two week turnaround or less and that commits to timely responses to your queries.
Meet with your accountant regularly or having access to your advisor should be trouble-free. This professional relationship is an important one to have, knowing that you can count on your accountant to provide the advice you need and file the papers that need filing will allow you to make informed decisions.
Regular communication from your accounting firm on things you should be aware of is also important. It is difficult to be aware of every tax or accounting strategy or requirement, however regular newsletters or social media posts from your accountant will bring many areas of concern to your attention.
Consider a firm that has a social media presence and send out regular newsletters with up to date and relevant information.
At Shajani LLP our mission is to build valued relationships while providing sound, professional advice through extensive business knowledge and innovation while reassuring our clients their concerns will be handled efficiently.
If you are looking for an accounting firm, consider us as your professional advisors.
This information is for discussion purposes only and should not be considered professional advice. There is no guarantee or warrant of information on this site and it should be noted that rules and laws change regularly. You should consult a professional before considering implementing or taking any action based on information on this site. Call our team for a consultation before taking any action. © 2021 Shajani LLP.
Shajani LLP is a CPA Calgary, Edmonton and Red Deer firm and provides Accountant, Bookkeeping, Tax Advice and Tax Planning services.