Small business owners can find it difficult to keep track of all the different elements of entrepreneurship. And while trial and error can be a good learning format in some situations, it’s really not ideal for a business owner, especially when it comes to finances. That’s why it’s crucial to seek the guidance of an accounting professional, ideally even before your business is registered and official. Having an accountant keep an eye on your business’s finances will allow you to focus on your marketing, relationships with employees and clients — everything that keeps your venture running smoothly.

Why have accounting services from the get-go?

Even before your business is official, you will need to have a financial plan in place. Your financial plan will help you set a budget for your business, including payroll, marketing, and more. It will also detail any investments you may make and detail the value of your existing assets. A professional can help you make sure your financial plan is comprehensive and accurate.

When it’s time to register your business as a legal entity, an accounting professional will also help you figure out which business type to choose. Registering as an LLC (limited liability company) is a good choice for most small businesses as it will allow you extra tax deductions and various legal protections.

An accountant is crucial at tax time.

Don’t go into tax season without the assistance of an accounting professional. Even if you are good with numbers and familiar with tax law, you simply are not going to have the time and energy to put into making sure your business taxes are filed correctly, unless you opt to neglect your actual work: business management. Making a mistake at tax time as a business is something to be avoided at all costs. Hiring professional accounting services is worth the expenditure for this reason. Better yet, a professional accountant can help you get the most out of the deductions available to you.

Small business owners without a lot of accounting knowledge may not realize that they need to file quarterly taxes if their income exceeds a certain amount. These taxes go towards what you are estimated to pay in federal taxes in April, so filing them is important in order not to be hit with a penalty, fined for the interest on the amount unpaid, and saddled with a huge lump sum payment. A good accountant will take care of your estimated taxes for you, making sure everything is filed and paid on time, accurately. They can also help you put together a complete financial report at quarterly intervals.

An accountant can help you manage payroll correctly.

If you have even one employee, that means you have to set up a pay schedule, as well as maintain payroll accounting. This entails paying employees correctly and on time, levying accurate deductions from their pay, and keeping precise records on all transactions. Accurate accounting here isn’t limited to routine wages or salaries, either — you need to keep track of overtime, paid leave, and bonuses. Since your relationship with your employees hinges heavily on paying them fairly and promptly, do not risk making an error in this department. Let an accounting professional stay on top of this for you.

Stay In the Know

For some business owners, hiring an accountant isn’t enough. And in order to get a clear picture of best business and accounting practices, getting a certification or even going back to school can make a difference in how you run your business. With a bachelor’s in business or accounting, you’ll be in a better position to understand the financial side of your venture, and you’ll gain new insight into how to grow your business. These days, many people turn to online universities as a way to achieve their degree on a schedule that fits their lifestyles, making it easier to balance work and family demands.

Even if you’re pretty adept at accounting, you should still rely on the services of a professional to plan, launch, and run your business smoothly. The benefits of doing so will quickly become clear to you.

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