Opening a new business is a thrilling experience, but it can also be overwhelming with many intricate details to manage. You need to have the right tools, equipment, and know-how to do it successfully.
Far too many small business owners fail to properly plan when opening their doors. They fail to adequately understand the ins and outs of their business model or consider all of the necessary costs involved with running a profitable organization.
Here are seven essentials to help you successfully launch your accounting firm.
Invest in Accountant Insurance
An accountant insurance policy can be a crucial tool for your business. Accountants are highly vulnerable to lawsuits by clients and other third parties, so purchasing an accountant insurance policy will help you avoid financial disaster if you are sued.
You can easily purchase accountant insurance online to protect your firm from professional mistakes and property damage claims brought on by your clients or third parties. In addition, some policies even provide coverage for legal fees related to personal injury issues that may arise within your practice.
Attain Necessary Licenses or Permits
Depending on the services you plan to provide, you could be required to obtain several different licenses and permits before opening your doors. In some cases, you may need to acquire a Certified Public Accountant (CPA certification) or Certified Management Accounting (CMA) certification.
For individuals to practice as CPAs, they are required by law to obtain a license from the state of their practice. This license must be renewed annually, and CPAs need to adhere to certain ethical standards enforced by the state board.
Hire Competent Accountants and Bookkeepers
Accounting firms that have a limited number of employees or insufficient staffing cannot effectively meet their clients’ needs.
Having qualified, professional staff is imperative to running a successful business and growing your client base. It’s important to hire dedicated professionals who can help you manage your firm during tax season or provide assistance with bookkeeping.
Choose Your Accounting Software Wisely
The accounting software you use is going to have a major impact on your firm’s success. Choosing the right program will help keep your business organized and allow you to effectively manage your clients’ accounts, payrolls, income taxes, corporate filings, and financial statements.
Software such as QuickBooks and Xero can offer you all of these features that will help make your business run smoothly. Make sure that the accounting software you choose is easy to install, supports multiple users, offers unlimited data storage, and allows you to easily integrate your financials with tax preparation software.
Develop a Profitable Marketing Plan
Many new businesses fail to establish a strong marketing strategy before they open their doors. Without the proper advertising and promotion in place, your accounting firm will never be able to reach its full potential.
Creating effective advertisements for your business will help build your brand and make potential clients more aware of the services you offer. This can help drive new business to your firm and spread positive word-of-mouth referrals throughout the industry.
Budget for Necessary Expenses
Before opening your doors to clients, make sure that you have considered your accounting firm’s expenses. Many people start businesses with limited knowledge of how much it will cost to set up and run a business. Still, an accountant needs to budget for all associated expenses carefully.
Many factors can affect your company’s overall monthly costs, including the size of your office space rental, utility bills, internet and phone charges, hardware and software investments, recordkeeping fees with third-party services such as banks, and employee salaries.
Understanding your business’ expenses will allow you to decide if the amount of money you need from clients is reasonable or if you should raise or lower your prices.
Create an Effective Office Space
The layout of your physical office space is critical — so much so that some practitioners refer to their offices as working factories where productivity and efficiency are crucial. Having the right office furniture can help you maintain a professional environment that makes clients feel comfortable and helps your staff remain focused on the tasks at hand.
The decor of your accounting firm’s space also has an important effect on how you operate your business. Having artwork or other attractive features will make your personnel more productive and create an enjoyable atmosphere for your clients to visit.
Doing your research and planning ahead of time will help you succeed as a new accountant.
If you’re trying to open up a firm, consider these important steps before getting started. As long as you create a strong business plan and build your firm around carefully planned goals, you’ll have the solid foundation needed to reach success.