Accountants help individuals and businesses manage their financial records. They update documents and review data to ensure it’s accurate. Accountants need a bachelor’s degree in their field and can increase their job prospects by earning the certified professional accountant (CPA) license.
Accounting firms specialize in providing services to their clients. Tasks vary, based on the firm’s focus. Individuals who own an accounting firm have the potential to establish a lucrative business that may serve other companies’ or individuals’ accounting needs.
Table of Contents
Choose a Focus
To start an accounting firm, you must determine your focus. You may opt to focus on serving the needs of large corporations who need public accounting services, or you can focus on tax preparation for individuals and companies. Accounting firms can also specialize in bookkeeping services. These accountants prepare financial records for small businesses. Your firm can also specialize in forensic accounting. Forensic accountants examine financial records and transactions to determine if someone has committed a crime.
Choose Your Structure
It is possible to start a company as a sole proprietorship, but these companies are typically small and only employ the owner. If you plan to build a larger firm, you may want to register your business and become a limited liability company (LLC). When you register your LLC, your assets are protected. The company has its assets.
Research the local laws for businesses to ensure you’re familiar with the operating requirements. You must also apply to the internal revenue service (IRS) for an employer identification number (EIN) and tax number to file your firm’s taxes and pay employees.
Create a Business Plan
A business plan outlines your goals for your company. It should also indicate how you intend to achieve those goals. Once the company has been launched, you need your employees to fulfill appropriate objectives, which may include acquiring a specific number of clients or generating enough revenue to meet your predetermined goals.
Create a Budget
A budget is essential. It would be best to have a clear idea of how much money you will need to launch your business. Research appropriate costs, such as salaries for staff, rent, business insurance, taxes, and supplies.
In addition to desks and computers, you will need specialized products, such as tax return folders for accountants, accounting software, ledgers, and folders. When you create your budget, you may locate a supplier who can provide quality products at an affordable price and open an account with them to ensure you’re ready to launch your business with the supplies you need.
Establish Operating Policies
Before you hire staff, you should establish clear expectations for your team. In addition to the performance goals you have in your business plan, you should have expectations about conduct and appearance. Establish clear guidelines to avoid disciplinary issues with your team.
You can ensure your employees meet your expectations by presenting examples of professional attire suitable for your firm, including straight leg pants, pencil skirts, blouses, blazers, and dresses. You may also choose to provide gift cards to retailers who specialize in business attire when you give staff performance rewards.
Choose a Location
Your firm’s focus and budget may influence your choice of location. Find an office or building to rent that is in a location suitable for your prospective clients. Consider whether there’s parking available or whether the location is close to public transit. Both your staff and clients must be able to access your site.
Determine Your Role
You may intend to be an employee and owner. You may also decide to assume a managerial role and oversee operations. Once you’ve decided what role you will play in your firm, you can determine your hiring needs.
You can opt to outsource your human resources needs. HR professionals help you establish staff policies and oversee the hiring process. You may not need to hire individuals with a degree if your firm focuses on bookkeeping services. However, if your company specializes in public accounting or forensic accounting services, you may need CPAs. HR professionals can work with you to determine your specific needs and find qualified staff for your team.