Remember that your expertise is in running your business, and not all business owners have a natural head for figures. Many businesses hire an accountant to complete their end of year process, but some find that using their services throughout the year makes life a lot easier, and makes the end of year reporting go much smoother. The harder you find it to keep the books up to date, the more time you will spend on it, and all of that time could be better spent doing what you do best: running your business.
Of course all business owners are trying to save money, and make as much profit as possible. However it need not cut too far into the bottom line to engage the services of a finance professional to help your business. If you count up the amount of time you spend doing the books, and work out how much you could earn if you were working during that time, then you can quickly assess the costs versus the benefits of taking on someone else to help out.
Don’t forget that expenses on hiring professionals are tax deductible – and a good accountant will be able to make sure that you claim back every bit of expense that you are entitled to. You do not need to necessarily employ a full-time accountant, you can usually take them on for a couple of hours at a time, whenever you need a little help.
The price of accountants varies wildly. You can usually get your end of year books completed for around the £200 mark whereas to get occasional advice can cost anything between £20 and £80 per hour (and higher) – depending on the nature of the task and the local conditions. It pays to shop around but don’t just pick the lowest price: you have to balance it with the right level of service for you as you will be entrusting your accountant with your livelihood.