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20 Reasons Why a New Business Accountant Could Be Right for You

20 Reasons Why a New Business Accountant Could Be Right for You

By Prime Advisory, 16 December 2019

Is your business accountant doing absolutely all they can to help you? Here are 20 tell-tale signs that suggest it might be time for a change…

Finding the right business accountant is no easy task.

While it’s easy to check their qualifications, it’s harder to know whether they’ll be the right ‘fit’ for your business.

And just because an accountant is perfect for one business doesn’t mean it will be ideal for yours. It really depends on what you want out of the relationship.

For those of you who’ve been in business for years and used the same accountant from day one, here’s something to consider…

Sure, that individual may have kept you in the ATO’s good books, and even helped you get every deduction under the sun…

But the best business accountants don’t help you record history. They help you make it.

Focus on the Road Ahead

Meeting your tax obligations is an essential part of business. And you should always be looking for ways to maximise profits.

Yet having your business accountant focusing on what’s already happened in your organisation is like looking in the rear-view mirror while you’re driving. It’s not only pointless, but also quite dangerous.

A good accountant focuses on your business’ future, not its past. They’ll learn about your business goals and where you want it to go, and then come up with plans to help you get there.

Yes, they may occasionally look back to make sure nothing’s wrong, i.e., check that there’s no smoke pouring out of the exhaust.

But they’ll spend most of the time looking at the road ahead—the road that leads to your business’ financial success.

Instead of just lodging your tax return to keep the ATO happy, your business accountant will also help you with such tasks as:

  • Minimising your tax
  • Protecting your assets
  • Improving your profits and cash flow
  • Building a valuable asset that’s ‘sale ready’
  • Implementing accounting systems that make your life easier
  • Creating a business that gives you the time and money to support your personal goals

Keep Track of Where You Are

Imagine you’re about to drive off to somewhere new…

You punch the destination into whatever web mapping platform you fancy, and off you go. But instead of constantly telling you which roads you need to take, the device only gives you an update if:

  • You push a button to request one
  • You’re more than a hundred kilometres off course

Pretty useless, right?

The point of that story is… how often does your business accountant get in touch with you? Once a year at tax time? When there’s an issue with your finances?

If that’s the case they’re about as useful as that mapping platform.

As well as helping you comply with your reporting obligations, your business accountant should be helping you:

  • Set and monitor both your business and personal goals
  • Create wealth
  • Retain as much of that wealth as possible

And the only way they can do that is to be proactive.

Don’t Tell Us You’re Proactive—Show It!

A lot of business accountants will tell you they’re proactive, but that’s like someone telling you they’re funny.

To have any credibility they have to prove it (by making you laugh).

And it’s the same with being proactive.

Unless they’re calling you regularly to stay in touch, offer new solutions, and keep your business heading in the right direction, they’re being reactive—no matter what it states on their website.

And if your business accountant is reactive, then it’s probably time to start looking for an alternative.

Business Accountant: Proactive v Reactive

Here are 20 ways a proactive business accountant differs from a reactive one.

Read the list below, and then ask yourself this question: Is my business accountant really being proactive?

  With reactive accountants With proactive accountants
1 You call them when you have an issue. They call you regularly and ‘check in’ on how you’re going.
2 You visit them only when you have to. They visit you at no charge.
3 You only see or hear from them when something bad has happened. You hear from them frequently about all sorts of issues, ideas, and opportunities.
4 They don’t have a regular communication program. (It’s almost a surprise when they contact you.) They have a structured communication program that does not cost you anything.
5 They charge you for nearly every phone call, email, and quick meeting—all in six-minute ‘units’ of time. They don’t charge for these small matters because they know how annoying it would be.
6 They don’t understand your business or situation, and take little interest in you. They understand your business/situation, and are very interested in your welfare.
7 They give you a bill after the work is done, which is often a nasty surprise. They price the project before starting, and advise how much it will be and what’s involved.
8 You receive surprise bills from the tax department that you don’t understand. They have advised you of forthcoming tax bills well in advance, so they’re no surprise to you.
9 They never ask for client feedback about their service levels. They ask for your opinion on how they can deliver a higher quality service.
10 They talk more than you do in meetings—always offering solutions before the real issue is uncovered. They listen more than you do in meetings, and ask probing questions to get to the heart of the issue before they offer the solution.
11 They tell you what to do. They tell you what to do and how to do it.
12 They don’t tell you what to send in each year, or what format it should be in. They send you checklists, and work with you to get all the information they need in one go.
13 They only offer what you legally have to buy—compliance services that add minimal value. They offer a range of business improvement and wealth/asset services suited to your goals.
14 They let you send in your work whenever you’re ready. They tell you when you need to send in your work so it can be processed in a timely manner.
15 They don’t ask when you need information or jobs completed—they just assume. They arrange a deadline with you as to when the information/project needs to be completed.
16 They ‘pre-judge’ what services you need. They ask questions to determine what you need.
17 You don’t have a very good relationship with them. They make an effort to enhance their relationship with you.
18 You have no idea what value they add. They articulate the value that they add.
19 They don’t explain their work to you. They just send it to you—often without any explanation. They step you through what it all means and where the money went, and help you interpret your situation.
20 They virtually say, “Good luck. You’re on your own”. They help you achieve your financial goals step-by-step.

Proactive Accountants Here for You

Want to know what a truly proactive business accountant can do for you?

Get in touch with the expert team at PrimeAdvisory.

We truly make a difference—and we’ll show you how.

Contact us or give us a call on +61 02 9415 1511.

Let’s see what’s possible.


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