Whether you are good with numbers or not, tax returns (not to mention other bookkeeping activities) can be daunting. If you do not feel like you have the time or energy to pierce the impenetrable secrets of accounting, the best way to go is to hire someone whose job is to do exactly that. But beware, whether it is for your household or your business, hiring an accountant is an important step and precautions need to be taken.
Here are a few things you might want to consider when looking for an irreplaceable accountant:
Qualifications and experience
First of all, your accountant has to be a registered as a tax agent, BAS agent or financial adviser with the Australian government. Professional bodies such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants or Certified Practicing Accountants Australia set standards that have to be met by accountants willing to be certified. Hiring a certified or chartered accountant (CPA) is a guarantee of quality.
Knowledge and problem-solving skills
The ideal candidate would be able to answer all of your questions. This applies especially for a business: make sure you find someone who has expertise in the tax laws that apply to your company. You can also check whether they have already worked for companies in your field. A good CPA needs to have a strategy that will save you money and have excellent problem-solving skills.
If your candidate seems to be matching the above requirements, you are heading in the right direction! However, remember that qualifications and knowledge will not necessarily satisfy all of your requests: if you are looking for an irreplaceable accountant, they must also have exceptional communication skills. If they are using mysterious accounting jargon when explaining something and you cannot understand a word they say, then they are not doing their job properly. Make sure they have good customer service skills too: you want someone who replies to your emails promptly and returns your phone calls as soon as possible.
Last but not least, listen to your intuition – and do background checks! Getting the accountant who is right for you is of the utmost importance. A lot can be learnt about someone from their accounts, so whether it is personal or for your business, you have to be able to fully trust them. If your instinct tells you something does not feel right – even if the candidate checks all of the other boxes, it would be best to look for someone else. If trust goes a long way, misplaced faith does too, and you might regret letting an unworthy person in.
There are hundreds of CPAs out there and there is no doubt that you will find the right one for you. Even if you are in dire need, do not rush the process: your household and business deserve more than the average accountant. And, if you follow the above advice, you should be able to find a gem of an accountant.
IQ Accountants are the best Gold Coast accountants, hands down! We are located at Burleigh Heads. Our clients are not only based in the local area but a significant number of them are remotely located including interstate and overseas. We appreciate that in this current day, our lives are busier than ever and fitting in an appointment with an accountant may prove to be difficult. Our modern approach involves keeping fully updated with our clients through technology available, which avoids the need for regular visits to our office if it is inconvenient. Contact our team today on 07 5576 0011.