Step 1: Find yourself a new accountantChanging your accountant can be a tricky process, but it’s one you must take the time to get right. You need to be sure your new accountant can supply all the specialist services you require, like tax-planning, bookkeeping, and financial advice. So, do your homework.
Research is key when it comes to finding an accountant. Customer testimonials are a great way to learn about the accountant through other peoples’ experiences. Reputation is one thing – and awards are great – but it’s more important that your accountant understands your business. They should get to know your goals and how you operate. Ideally, you need someone who can provide both.
Remember, the amount an accountant can save your business should be weighed against the costs of employing them. Accountants offer differing levels of engagement. So, it’s important to establish when, and how often, you’ll be in contact, as well as how you’re going to be corresponding. You’ll probably already know what works – or not – for you and your business, and the kind of accountant you’re looking for.
As with every industry, finance and accountancy are constantly evolving. You need an accountant who’s at the forefront of that change. For instance, with the introduction of ‘Making Tax Digital’, cloud-based accounting is fast becoming an expectancy for the majority of clients. Whilst you may not be completely up-to-speed with the latest online accountancy software – and who can blame you – it’s imperative your accountant is. Even more so With products like FreeAgent and Quickbooks becoming ever more essential.
Step 2: Notify your current providerOnce you’ve found an accountant that suits you and your business, you’ll need to let your current accountant know that you’re switching. It’s worth reading through your original letter of engagement, as you may need to serve a notice period before leaving. You’ll also need to inform them that your new accountant will be in contact to request clearance and organise the transfer of key documents.
Breaking up is never easy. So, once you’ve informed your current accountant, we’ll take care of the formalities with minimal input needed from yourself.
Step 3: Change your accountant – todayYour new accountant will draw up a letter of engagement. This will outline the expectations of each party, the stipulated fees, and the level of service which will be provided. When you’ve signed and returned this document, your accountant will request authorisation from relevant HMRC departments, allowing them to act on your behalf.
The final phase of the handover will involve your new accountant getting you set up, enabling them to provide the agreed level of service.
It’s free to switch to Danbro. If your current accountant does charge a fee for the handover process, it should only be a nominal amount.
Step 4: Monitor Performance, Manage Relationships, Move ForwardWhen you change your accountant, you’re embarking on a fresh start for your business and its financial future. It’s a significant step, and with that in mind, it’s important to ask plenty of questions. You should also monitor both the performance and progress of your new arrangement – as you would with any other aspect of your business. A healthy relationship is typified by ongoing conversation, the sharing of information and, ultimately, trust. A good accountant will be pro-active in their approach, keeping in regular contact to make sure you’re kept abreast of how things are going; after all, it’s your money.
Here at Danbro, we believe that accounting is about more than just number crunching. It’s about developing great relationships, overcoming obstacles, providing solutions, and helping your business achieve its absolute potential. We’ve been helping businesses of all sizes with their finances for 20 years. We appreciate that outsourcing even the smallest part of the financial organisation of your business requires a great deal of confidence in your provider. That’s why we make switching swift, simple, and stress-free.
To learn more about Danbro’s award-winning accountancy services – or to join today – get in touch, or call 01253 600 150 and speak to one of our associate partners now.
Sam Wright is Danbro’s Marketing Manager. He produces regular content and feature articles on our digital and non-digital channels – and social platforms – for the Danbro Group and its subsidiaries, as well as having responsibility for the Company’s internal and external communications.
His background is in Journalism and Creative Writing, having previously contributed to publications such as The Daily Post, The Lancashire Evening Post, and The Blackpool Gazette.
He is a keen swimmer and avid Manchester United fan (but don’t hold that against him), and he lives in Lancashire with his wife, Sarah.