The 3 Most Critical Errors to Avoid in Finding a Bookkeeper

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    Oct 05, 2012
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The difficulties in setting up a small business are quite numerous and they vary immensely. Every company has its own unique challenges and small business, especially new ones, have some of the most. When talking to most small business owners, they’d prefer to focus on their business and what they’re good at, rather than dealing with dry and vague issues that are better handled by bookkeepers. The problem is that many people simply assume that bookkeepers are interchangeable and that can lead to many problems when the wrong one is picked. In the very competitive tri-state area in which we live, this possible mistake is even more potentially costly.

Having competent representation can truly be the difference between a business that can keep its head above water and one that thrives. The importance of competent tax preparation by a good bookkeeper can be simply explained by the fact that new businesses see more audits and higher tax rates because they’re more likely to have avoidable errors. That makes finding NYC bookkeepers with experience working with small businesses a necessity. There are issues in the first couple years that some bookkeepers wouldn’t be experts on and that could cause problems.

A lot of people don’t know better and they choose to work with a friend or family member who is a bookkeeper, regardless of whether they are a good fit or have the proper experience. Finding a good bookkeeper, especially for small businesses, is extremely difficult and it’s unlikely that someone’s brother-in-law would be the best option. Hurt feelings in a family are a lot easier to deal with than potentially going out of business and having to file bankruptcy.

Another tricky issue is that NYC bookkeepers that have really low fees, but may not have the best fit overall are often a mistake that leads to problems down the road. This is where the cliché, “You get what you pay for,” comes into play. It’s important to only work with accounting firms that have a good deal of experience because saving a few thousand is not worth a significantly larger tax bill or other issues that can lead to higher costs. A bookkeeper must be evaluated like any long-term relationship and one or two small points can’t be the sole determining factor. It is strongly recommended that people find bookkeepers that have many years of experience to help with start ups. This work with start-ups is crucial because the interpersonal relationship between a business and their bookkeeper is more important when dealing with new businesses.

The key theme in avoiding all of these issues is to get good references that are unbiased and paint a picture of a firm that has experience that is similar to that of the start-up. A reference from a company within a similar industry can be doubly important. Different industries have different needs, so what may work for a huge company may not work for a two-man operation. The best bookkeepers can provide a valuable service to their clients, but no two clients have the same needs so it becomes more art than science. They can often be the difference between success and failure during the most difficult first year. So it’s not a decision that should be taken lightly or made cavalierly.

Author's Profile

Gavin Harrison is a free lance writer. Get more information on NYC Bookkeepers, Bookkeeping, New York Bookkeepers, Accounting, Bookkeeper NYC, New York Bookkeeping and Bookkeepers.

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