If you’re like most of the small business owners I’ve interacted with over the years, you probably have what could be called a DIY attitude. More likely than not, you started your business on your own, doing as much of the work as you possibly could manage by yourself. When you’re trying to get a new venture off the ground, you don’t want to hire people or spend money on something you can accomplish personally, until it becomes an absolute necessity to do so. After all, you’ve got enough costs already, and you’re always looking for places where you can save money.
It’s especially difficult, at early stages of growth, to justify bringing on more staff, and the decision to hire an accountant is no exception. Actually the choice has become even tougher with the availability of easy to use accounting software, which seems designed to make us feel like we ought to be able to manage bookkeeping on our own. Yet as we use those tools to generate invoices and make ledger entries, we may be left unsure as to whether we’re really getting it all right.
At some point, it becomes “penny-wise and pound-foolish” to try to handle such critical tasks on your own, especially if your expertise lies in other areas than accounting and bookkeeping. While trying to save money on expenses, you run the risk of making errors that will impact your bottom line even more. Many a small business owner, after they finally make the decision to hire a professional accountant, learns that they could have been doing things much more efficiently, and ends up saving much more than the cost of the accounting help.
For many businesses, the indicator that it’s time to hire a professional accountant is simply the amount of time you need to spend on doing the work. When you find yourself at the point where the accounting workload is keeping you from managing and developing the business properly, it’s time to consider bringing in professional help.
There are obvious benefits of having the work done by a professional accountant, in addition to reclaiming time that you’ve been spending doing it yourself. Having a trained eye that specializes in that type of work focusing on your finances can help you avoid costly mistakes and give you some much needed peace of mind.
A lot of businesses make the move to bring in a pro when it’s time to interact with the government. It’s one thing to make mistakes on your own books, and another thing entirely when the government is involved. When your tax filings come due, you’ll be much better off with the expert knowledge of a professional accountant who knows the ins and outs of the tax laws.
The exact time to hire an accountant will vary from one business to the next. But one thing is certain: it makes sense to leave the management of your finances to people whose specialty is accounting, so you can focus on your own specialty.