Business owners will be well aware of just how long their ‘to-do’ list can be and just how far down bookkeeping and tax management are. Unsurprisingly there has been a boom in the cloud accountant software market as businesses look to technology as a means of reducing the burden of accountancy tasks.
Why do I need an accountant?
Accounting software can save you time and money while giving you invaluable insights into your business. So, why do you even need an accountant? Well, accompanying bookkeeping at the lower end of the (want) to-do list is likely ‘learn how to use cloud accounting software’. Hence having a cloud accountant to help you navigate and fully harness accounting technology is crucial to its successful implementation.
4 things to look for in a cloud accountant
Ideally you want a chartered accountant who is regulated by a UK professional body (e.g. ICAEW); this is especially important if your business decides to apply for a loan or undergoes an audit. Choosing a trusted accountant will ensure they will abide by all relevant laws and regulations while maintaining the highest professional and ethical standards.
- Relevant experience
Expertise and a good track record of working with businesses similar in size and revenue as your own, preferably in your industry, are crucial. The labyrinth that is UK tax law is often challenging for business owners to fully grasp therefore an accountant with up-to-date knowledge of UK tax is vital.
- Expert in cloud accounting technology
Cloud technology offers a wide range of automation and reporting capabilities. However, business owners, even the tech-savvy ones, often struggle to make the most of these features. By choosing a fully qualified online accounting expert to guide you through the process you will be able to harness the full potential of cloud technology.
A cloud accountant can ensure a seamless migration to a cloud-based system and help train you and your staff on how to get the most out of your software. They can delve into the myriad of data to identify potential areas of growth, revenue, and cost savings with the goal being to maximise profit for your business.
Most of the major accounting software, such as Xero and Sage, now feature open APIs meaning they are compatible with a whole host of other apps (e.g. cash flow forecasting). Xero is now also fully compatible with the HMRC’s Make Tax Digital system enabling your accountant to complete your tax returns and submit them directly. A cloud accountant should be up-to-date with these types of technological advancements and aware of how they could benefit your business.
- A service tailored to YOUR business
Whether you are a sole trader, small or medium-sized business selecting the right online accountant is critical. Though there are now plenty of cheap cloud accountants, their services tend to follow a one-size-fits-all approach and offer little more than a software subscription.
Instead you want a service tailored to your business, your industry, and your needs. To speak with a fully qualified and trusted online accountant today who can offer you a bespoke service, please get in touch.