Mani Malarvannan
Mani Malarvannan is cofounder of Cybelink, a company specializes in small business financial and accounting outsourcing like Bookkeeping, Tax, Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, etc. For more info visit
Mani Malarvannan has written 9 articles for SB Informer.
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7 Tips for Finding a Good CPA

Mani Malarvannan

August 09, 2007

2.5/5.0 (2 votes total)

Growth and prospects of a business is directly related to account management. This is now accepted worldwide and thus business houses, irrespective of size are hiring competent and experienced CPAs.

However, your CPA will be handling your company’s’ crucial and sensitive financial information and therefore you must be serious while selecting him or her. Here you will find seven tips to help you find a capable and trustworthy accountant.

Qualifications of a CPA

CPAs are not number crunchers, they do lot more work like tax planning, business consulting, and all other legal formalities for your business. You need to ensure the professional you are hiring has the right qualifications and has passed all the state governed tests and qualified for the recertification tests. This will also ensure that your CPA is well-informed and abreast with all accounting related government rules and regulations.

Who can describe a CPA’s performance better than the clients of that CPA? It is a good idea to speak to colleagues and other businesspeople about the CPAs that they are working with or to get a referral from a trustworthy source. You may consider asking your financial planner, insurance agent or even your banker. Alternatively, you may even decide to select a CPA from the phone book and ask them for references of clients they are working with. Once you have decided on the 4-5 CPAs you want to select the final candidate from, you should ask for references that you can speak to and get a clear picture of the CPA’s style of working.

Analyze and Assess What You Expect of a CPA
A good CPA does more than just file your tax returns; a CPA can provide sound financial advice that may be implemented to chart the course of success for your company. A good CPA is especially vital for small businesses that can leave the financial of the business to the CPA and focus on their core business. A CPA may also be able to assist in making simple but important decisions such as buying or leasing a car for the office and ho it affects the tax for the company.

Don’t be in a Hurry
A CPA is a professional you should take time and effort to select; it is not easy or cost-effective to start looking for another CPA if you are not satisfied with the present one. Your CPA would be able to provide valuable financial guidelines that would save money and time, which could then be diverted towards more productive activities. Ideally you should interview about 4-5 CPAs before hiring the best one. Interviews with several CPAs will help you assess their capabilities, services they offer and their work style. You can also fin out their fee structure like hourly and monthly rates.

Outsource Accounting
By outsourcing accounting to a competent CPA you are assured the process is handled with utmost professionalism and reduces the administrative hassles of hiring a full-time CPA. This will also bring down the accounting cost without sacrificing the quality of the services. More and more businesses prefer to outsource their accounting not just to save money but to ensure their accounting business processes are handled efficiently and quickly.

Create a Questionnaire for the Interview
It is important that you decide the questions you are going to ask the prospective CPAs before you meet them for an interview. Some of the questions that you may consider include how the CPA can help your business save money, financial strategies that will ensure the long-term growth of the business. You could also ask the CPA about the advices and tips helps his or her current clients in saving money. You may also show the CPA your company’s past accounting statements and ask to comment and provide advice for the same.

Check for Technological Expertise
Several small business accounting software are available to help business owners to manage their company’s accounts and financial information. You need to make sure the CPA uses the same accounting software you are currently using in your company. If not you may incur a huge expense in migrating your financial and accounting data from your current accounting software to a different accounting software used by your CPA. If you are not using any accounting software then you need to decide what accounting software is good for your business first before choosing your CPA.

Small businesses should properly select their CPA to run their small business smoothly. These tips can help small business owners in choosing the right CPA for their company.


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