Tax returns have been filed, and last year’s financial paperwork is in order. Now is a perfect time to take a moment and evaluate the services provided by your accountant. Many business owners might not know that they can receive value beyond compliance from this relationship. There are a few key components to discuss with your accountant to ensure that you are on the same page when it comes to your business goals.
- Strategies to boost financial performance. Your accountant should be well aware that the overall goal is to increase shareholder value. Thanks to the forecasting tools they use and financial analyses they regularly perform, accounting professionals are able to understand the important data and track historical trends that can help business owners take the long view of their operations. Be sure to discuss with your accountant possible ways to enhance value and chart a course for your company’s future growth.
- Assistance to overcome financial obstacles. You are not alone when it comes to financial decision-making for your company. Remember, your accountant is there to provide guidance when concerns or problems arise. Turn to them when issues like performance, level of risk, new initiatives and unplanned growth present challenges to your business. In times of uncertainty, your accountant can conduct a variety of studies or analyses that give you the information you need to resolve a problem, whether it be general operation or cash flow issues.
- Know the competitive landscape and impact of operational decisions. In order to build a successful business, you have to know what you are up against. Your accountant can conduct a competitive analysis of nearby and similarly-sized companies, as well as trends that appear in your industry or geographic footprint. As a result of this valuable information, you may wish to change some or all of your operations. This is another area where your accountant can provide value and insight by quantifying the financial impact of significant changes or business moves, including your company’s ability to meet its debt covenants.
It is important to have an accountant who is more than just a number cruncher – you want a proactive partner to help ensure your company’s profitable future. Your accountant likely has years of experience and perspective that can benefit your business, and it is important to tap into that. Getting your accountant on the same page and developing a collaborative relationship can help simplify your life as a business owner, and allow you reap benefits far beyond a yearly tax return.
RKL’s tax, accounting and business consulting professionals help business owners address issues, take on challenges and achieve new levels of success. Want to know more about how we can help you? Contact one of our office locations today.
Contributed by Gretchen G. Naso, CVA, MBA, a principal in RKL’s Business Consulting Services Group. A Certified Valuation Analyst, Gretchen has extensive experience in general and family limited partnerships and valuations for financial reporting, purchase price allocation and gifting and estate tax purposes.