Choosing an accountant
“We use Phillip Carroll to certify over 1,500 of our commercial property service charges each year. Their complete understanding of the property industry and RICS guidelines provides us with total confidence and their bespoke service, shaped to suit our own systems and procedures, makes them exceptional. Nobody will work harder for you than Carol Chan and her team and the relationship between us, built over almost 15 years is a special one.”
Claire Obeney | Associate Director – Savills Commercial Ltd
We contacted Philip Carroll for assistance with our monthly payroll in the absence of our own payroll employee. With very short notice they went out of their way to ensure a member of their team was with us in our office. She provided the knowledge and experience we required with a professional, friendly and approachable manner. Thanks very much for all your help!
Sarah Cottam | Financial Controller | Savills Management Resources Ltd
“Dave made everything so easy for us setting up a company. Everything was always explained clearly and I was even taught how to do VAT returns myself which saved a lot of money. I was recommended Dave by a work colleague and I have since passed on other friends to him. I would have no hesitation in recommending him again and I look forward to working with him in his new venture.”
“Even if the advice you need seems to be insignificant or trivial to you, you will be made to feel like it is the most important. All advice is given jargon free and you know that you will always be supported 100%”
Louise Garner | Group Financial Controller
“During the start up of my business it was an absolute comfort to know that I had a proactive, efficient and straight talking Accountant looking after my best interests, allowing me to concentrate my time on growing my business”
Jacqui Lord MNAEA | J Lord & Co (Cheshire) Ltd
“Having worked with Dave for over 10 years, I know him to be hard-working and organised, always up-to-date with all the developments and creative in his approach. It’s always been a great reassurance to know that my accounts are completely ‘right’ and that Dave and his team are at my side.”
Consultant in NHS and private practice
"David made setting up my company simple and straightforward. Being responsible for all your earnings for the first time was a daunting concept but David created a simple system to ensure I was putting enough money aside for tax, paying my NI and keeping my books up to date. A year on it has been easier than I could have ever imagined and would recommend it to anyone."
Top 5 things to think
about when selecting
Choosing an accountant is probably one of the most important business decisions you will make so be sure to fully vet them to find the best accountant for you. Most accountancy firms will offer an initial free consultation, so use this meeting to find out the following points:
1 - Qualifications
There are a few qualifications within the accountancy industry so make sure you ask your prospective accountant about theirs. The most common professional bodies that accountants are regulated by are ACCA, ICAEW and CIMA. Most accountants will have reference to their qualifications on their marketing material (leaflets, website etc), but if not, just ask.
2 - Experience
When choosing an accountant it is best to have one that deals with similar size businesses to yours. Remember, if your accountant runs their own small business they are much more likely to understand the workings of your company. Also, don’t be afraid to ask if they have similar clients in your industry.
3 - Location
Most people prefer a local accountant so they can meet with them if they need. However, this is not always necessary and many businesses use remote accountants where they have all communication by email or phone. This is completely down to your personal preference although most accountants like to meet their clients to build rapport and a good relationship with them.
4 - Charges
This is usually the number one question people want to know – how much will I be charged by an accountant? Do they charge a fixed annual fee which covers all services needed or is there a monthly cost? Some accountants charge by the hour. If this is the case, make sure you know exactly what they charge for – does a quick 5 minute phone call get charged to you at an hourly rate for example?
5 - References
If you still need further information about your prospective accountant, ask to speak to existing clients. Remember, your accountant should be one of the most important advisors you will have in your business so take your time in picking one.