Until recent years, there was a common misconception about the accounting profession, that our services were only needed during tax season. It was not true in the past, and it is certainly not true now. Many businesses and organization leaders see the benefits of engaging with accountants throughout the year. Today marking International Accounting Day, it’s time to remind our clients of everything we have to offer outside of audits and tax compliance.
From having a holistic understanding of finances and supporting our clients through difficult decision-making times, to helping navigate the pandemic relief landscape, the professional services we have. provided over the past 19 months have reinforced the importance of having experts such as accountants on hand to help with financial matters under uncertain circumstances. As the role of the accounting profession continues to evolve to encompass more strategic consulting services, different qualities and measures of success have risen to the top of the checklist when client leaders choose an accounting partner.
As we continue to work on behalf of our clients and demonstrate our value to their organizations, here are four key attributes to consider as we continue to improve our reputation as trusted business partners:
Accountants know the ins and outs of business
A good accountant brings a solid understanding of business and operations that often exceeds that of other professional partners. Combined with an intimate understanding of the finances of the organization, accountants are in a unique position to provide advice on critical issues consistent with the specific needs, goals and capabilities of an organization.
Accountants provide solutions-based thinking
Often, business interactions with accountants take place at specific times of the year and are limited to specific situations related to audits and compliance. Although accountants are proficient in these areas, limiting the employment relationship to these basic tasks can hamper future counseling opportunities and potential extensions of the professional relationship. In the worst case, this can hamper the success of an organization.
Conversations with accountants should be solution-based and take place regularly throughout the year. Discussion points should include recent or relevant regulatory changes, strategies for the future and proposed solutions. This can strengthen the professional relationship between accountants and other key decision makers in a business, specifically fostering strategic discussions and enabling success.
Accountants have in-depth knowledge of the latest regulatory requirements
In an ever-changing regulatory environment, compliance can be a real challenge for businesses. But the accountants are always in the know. Our profession requires us to constantly monitor relevant federal and state laws and regulations to stay abreast of the policies and procedures organizations must implement to remain compliant, and we don’t always focus solely on the latest accounting statements. This was more evident than ever over the past year as client organizations worked to help with the pandemic and regulatory changes. Paycheck Protection Program (P3) Loans, Employee Retention Tax Credits (ERTC), Closed Site Operator Grants, Restaurant Revitalization Fund Grants and more, Accountants have served as experts and consultants in providing relevant financial and regulatory information to assist businesses.
Accountants offer a variety of skill sets
The accounting industry can often seem focused on accounting, auditing, and tax services, but accountants themselves offer unique backgrounds and consulting skills that are well positioned to help any business or organization through wind and tides. The diverse experience of an accountant brings valuable consulting skills, whether your business needs to increase profitability, maximize operational efficiency, minimize
organizational risk or resolve complex business issues arising from regulatory compliance issues. There is often no more knowledgeable, experienced and trustworthy professional partner in a client’s network.
While accountants have continued to prove their worth in countless ways over the past 19 months, our role as key business partners has been critical to the success of many of our clients. Expanding our advisory roles has helped guide businesses through everything from obtaining loans and applying for tax credits to transitioning to remote work environments, to restructuring their workforce. work, the temporary closure of their doors and reopening in complete safety. And we did this while continuing to provide our core accounting, auditing and tax compliance services, truly expanding the role of what it means to be an accountant.