Ask the right questions
Not every accountant will be the ideal candidate for you. Therefore, prepare a list of questions to get to the bottom of exactly what they are offering to avoid any surprises. Do they provide monthly bookkeeping as well as business taxes? What exactly can you expect to pay for their services?
Get a referral from a personal contact
Like a good hairdresser, finding a professional that ‘gets’ you can be a challenge. Ask around and see if there is an accountant that somebody near and dear to you recommends. Find out what they like about them. Ask them what services they are given and at what price.
Double check their qualifications and experience
Don’t be swayed by the promise of a large check following your tax return submission. Always confirm their qualifications and experience thoroughly. If in doubt, ask them for a reference so you can verify they are as good as they say they are.
Understand what they need from you
Make sure you know what is expected of you up front. Can you do everything that is required from your perspective? Do you need to visit their office and supply them with physical paperwork, or will electronic copies sent through email be suitable? Does the way they operate meet your expectations?
Gauge their availability
Accountants may not be known for their customer service skills, but it is still an important and real aspect of their job. If you don’t hear from them for days, perhaps they are not the one for you. You need to know that you can get a hold of them when you need them the most.