To decide who should be your new accountant, or whether to replace your current accountant, you need to interview them. Do not accept that your accountant is acting in your best interest and providing you with the most up to date, proactive and valued added services without assessing them. Unfortunately many accountants in the industry are complacent operators. As a client you run the risk of missing out on compelling benefits and savings.
For example, we all value treatment from a good doctor. Who would you prefer to see? The doctor who says – ‘so it seems you’ve got tonsillitis – here’s a script for some antibiotics – and goodbye’. Or the doctor who looks at the immediate problem – ‘tonsillitis’, determines if you have allergies to various antibiotics so you don’t actually get sicker or have a serious reaction, and also looks at your overall health – cholesterol, blood pressure and so forth and then actually also does something about these areas to improve your overall health and quality of life. Well, accountants are exactly the same. Some take that extra level of interest and some do not. Some have the knowledge and some haven’t – their knowledge plateaued years ago or they failed to continue learning new and up to date policies, applications and technology. You need to find out who you are dealing with.
Asking your accountant these five key questions will help you decide:
- Am I in compliance with the tax, superannuation, employment, and other laws?
- Is my current business structure the optimum for operating my business?
- How can you help me to legally reduce the amount of tax I pay?
- How can you help me to increase the profitability of my business?
- What advice can you give me to make the operation and management of my business easier?
Depending on the answers you have received for these questions, you will know whether you have a very good accountant who is adding value to you, or just a very ‘average’ accountant filing in forms for the government.
I know which one I would want as my accountant.