As you staff your accounting firm, think unconventionally and bring on individuals with talents outside of accounting. Although auditing, tax preparation, and financial reporting are the premise of your company, having a diversified staff with different talents opens opportunities for your firm.
If you want your accounting firm to go beyond auditing, tax preparation, and financial reporting, bring in finance professionals. These advisors help your clients develop and move toward their long-term plans. Financial experts evaluate long-term capital projects using metrics like hurdle rate to assess whether the outcome of the work is favorable for your client. Other experts with investment backgrounds can advise on where your client should allocate its excess resources. Financial analysts take financial records and evaluate the performance of your client over a number of periods. When your accountants are done preparing the financial information, the finance experts take the data and can offer suggestions.
In addition to wanting to know more about what’s going on inside your client’s company, it’s important to understand how items outside the company will impact its operations. Having a talented economist as part of your accounting firm educates you on what anticipated changes in the marketplace are expected. From this information, you provide better services regarding when your client should take out a loan, what tax strategies your client should use, and how its customers will respond to market changes. An economist gives you insight regarding the future risks and opportunities for your clients.
It can never hurt to have general business experts on your accounting team. Instead of focusing solely on numbers, these members of your team provide overall strategy and business insight. They work with your clients on how the product line is doing, if the manufacturing process is efficient, or how its marketing campaign can be improved. Although your client may not be looking for other types of consulting services, people with talented backgrounds in general business management give you the opportunity to extend the service to your clients.
Depending on your clientele base, it’s extremely helpful to have individuals with nonprofit operations if your clients are in the nonprofit industry. Although you have accountants who specialize in the accounting matters for these organizations, the fundamental operations of nonprofits are different than for-profit entities. These companies have different risks, goals, and visions. Former executive directors or program managers benefit your audit or tax preparation work by helping you key in on important areas. However, these experts also provide consulting and advising services to your clients.
Similar to having nonprofit experts on hand, consider bringing in part-time industry experts. If your clients are in the arts and performing industry, have former actors, actresses, musicians, directors, and artists on hand to help provide insight. These people help determine the reasonableness of some of your client’s actions and provide deeper insight regarding the risks associated with your client’s financial matters.
As you work with clients and look at their financial information, you jump onto their network, dig around their accounting software, and analyze their databases. Don’t downplay the importance of having staff who know technology. Have staff who are knowledgeable about accounting software, cloud-based services, networks, information technology, and computer hardware to capitalize on opportunities. If your client is unhappy with its current setup, you have an expert on hand to help guide it through a software reimplementation. You can make suggestions regarding the security, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of your client’s setup.
Don’t minimize your business opportunity by only hiring accountants. Diversify your accounting team to provide better, different, and unique services to all of your clients. By doing so, your accounting business strengthens.