As many of you know, the perception of an accountants’ primary role is to keep clients out of trouble, but of late is has become so much more...at least it could.
For many small business owners these days, their days are consumed with keeping the business afloat as the landscape around them is changing, often for the better. According to the SBA, there are 30.2 million small businesses in the US, all of them trying to be successful, but often it takes an expert to understand how new laws can work in their favor so they can have that success.
As such, clients should think of accountants in the role of efficiency experts. Their CPA understands their business as they have a direct interest in helping the business owner succeed.
Here are 12 ways an accountant who truly understands a business can add value well beyond compliance work:
1. Paying the least amount of taxes required. Years ago, Morgan Stanley ran an ad: “You must pay taxes. But there’s no law saying you gotta leave a tip.” Accountants can help optimize a client’s situation within the rules.
2. Changes in the tax law. The National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) has highlighted three areas of benefit: “Lower individual tax rates, an additional 20 percent deduction for companies filing as pass through entities and an expansion of Section 179 filing, which allows for expensing of business related equipment.” - Forbes
3. Budgeting. Your business owner client may be hopeless in keeping records and planning for future expenses. You can help by setting up a plan for the next 18-36 months and checking in to see that they are sticking to it.
4. Maintaining the corporate veil. The above client’s hopelessness may mean they appear to run their business and personal lives out of the same pocket. You can help keep each aspect separate.