Accounting is a skill that is in great demand right now, with the increasing number of regulations and obligations that businesses have to deal with. More businesses are also deciding to outsource their accounting instead of having an accountant in-house to make their operations leaner. This is where you can capitalize on the opportunity and position yourself as a solution. While demand is high, you do have to know some key principles if you want to start getting clients and keeping them on board. Let’s take a look at how you can set up a successful accountancy agency in 2021.
Work with an Established Firm First
If you’re just getting started in this business, we would not suggest that you start by going independent. Instead, working for an established firm first could give you tons of benefits. For one thing, you’ll be able to sharpen up your skills as an accountant. But, more importantly, you’ll have a better opportunity to see how an accounting firm is run. This could give you valuable information on how they manage employees, what solutions they use, and things like sales, branding, and marketing, among others. This will also give you a better idea of how good you are at sales. If you can’t book more than 1000 hours with an established firm behind you, chances are you’re going to struggle on your own.
When you’re ready, it’s also important that you don’t overwhelm yourself with work at first. If you’re a one-person operation, then only take the jobs that you can handle, even if you’re getting a lot of requests. It’s better to turn down a client than to not be able to deliver. Staring small also allows you to run your operation from your home, which is how many accountants get started.
The last thing you want to do is fall in love with the idea of having an office and getting an expensive space filled with expensive furniture. Know that a lot of great accounting firms started from a garage, and you’ll have to use ingenuity to keep your overhead as close to zero as possible. You will be able to reinvest your profits on upgrades later on.
Sell Yourself as a Brand
The most important branding element when getting started with your accounting firm is yourself. Those who can build a genuine relationship with their clients end up being the happiest and more successful in the business. So, make sure that you dedicate yourself to truly helping your clients and going the extra mile for them. It will transpire in your service and will help you build a solid reputation in the community.
You can always start as a generalist, but that also means that you’ll have to compete with the H&R Blocks of this world. So, if you want to make things easier for you, we would suggest you start looking at specialization instead.
You could decide to work with a specific industry, for instance. This could be great if you have expertise in one particular area. Many niches are underserved at the moment with very tough tax regulations and requirements; it’s your job to sniff them out and find where you could build something for yourself.
Look Into Insurance
You will also have to start looking at insurance right away. You will need to get accountant liability insurance to keep your business safe. Some of your clients may sue you for advice that you gave them or allege that you didn’t do the job as you were supposed to. This is essential if you want to avoid lawsuits, but also to preserve your reputation and expedite the process if you do have to reach an agreement with a plaintiff. You also have to get general liability insurance to cover property damage or things like advertising harm, for instance.
If you want to be successful in the accounting industry, you have to remember to start small and grow your firm slowly. Unfortunately, too many firms fall victim to their success in their early years, so don’t be another statistic. Take the above tips on board and you should find your feet.