cpaWhether you own a small business or are self-employed, you can benefit from hiring a qualified certified public accountant or CPA to assist you with your accounting and tax needs. This becomes a need if3 you are not well versed in accounting and taxation for business. Accounting might be a singular degree at most universities but, after graduation, accountants specialize in specific fields of interest, so every accountant does not have the qualifications to meet your business needs. Choosing the right CPA can make a difference in the accuracy and thoroughness of your financial reporting and tax filing.

CPA Can Help Run Your Business

1.    Create a list of your business needs that you want a CPA to take care of. Depending on your knowledge and scope of your venture, the list can include things like simple bookkeeping, accounting system implementation, large-scale accounting, tax advice and preparation, legal entity advice and filing assistance.

2.    Talk to other business owners in your niche or in a closely related line of business and ask for recommendations. The best way to look for a qualified CPA that meets your needs is to look for one that already meets the same needs with other clients. Do not be afraid to call someone you do not know and ask for a recommendation. If business owners are satisfied with their accountant, they should be happy to give you that information.

3.    If you do not get recommendations from other business owners, visit your state’s website for the society of CPAs. There are many states offering a listing of CPAs licensed in that particular state and the type of work they give their clients. Create a list of the recommended CPAs. Put those that have the highest recommendations at the top of the list.

4.    Contact the first five CPAs on your listed and conduct a phone interview. During the interview, go through your list of requirements and ensure that the CPA gives all the services you are looking for. If you are satisfied with the responses, ask for an appointment to personally meet the CPA and discuss your requirements in further detail.

5.    Interview your top three choices for CPA. Discuss your business needs in greater detail at the appointment. Ask the CPA to give his number of years of experience in each of your requirements and to give references that you can contact for verification. Ask about the rates of the services you are looking for. Pricing may be per service or by the hour. Make detailed notes of the pricing schedule that each CPA uses. Contact the client references that the CPA provided and ensure that the client is satisfied with the CPA’s work.

Choose A CPA You Are Comfortable With

After following the steps above, pick the CPA that best fits your list of requirements and who has verifiable experience with other clients requiring the same kind of support. If all the CPAs you interviewed fit your requirements, choose the one with whom you felt most comfortable, assuming that the prices are all approximately the same.