“When do you know that it’s time to hire an Accountant vs. doing your own QuickBooks?”
This is a fantastic question and one I’m asked often. The answer depends on who is asking the question. If you are the type of person who balances your checkbook every month and can stay on top of personal finances, then you will likely do well with either spreadsheets or other accounting software like QuickBooks. Even so, I like to recommend that you sit down with a CPA at least once or twice a year – for most this is done around tax time. As your business grows you may find that your accountant becomes more like a business advisor and you will meet with them more and more often.
If you are the type of person who is unclear what your net income is or you have never balanced your personal checkbook, you would benefit from sitting down with an accountant right away and establishing a plan. The accountant can walk you through what you will need at tax time so you can keep track of the information all year long rather than having to scramble to find everything at tax time. In either case QuickBooks can make the accounting process easier.
QuickBooks is the number one accounting software for small businesses and is used by millions of small business owners. Having used the product for 10+ years, I can say that Intuit has done a great job in making bookkeeping tasks easy and the QuickBooks software is very user friendly. I have seen QuickBooks work for businesses that have less than $100,000 in sales per year, all the way up to sales of $34 million. Most business owners can use QuickBooks every day with no problems and actually find comfort in having all their numbers in one place rather than spread between sticky notes, excel spreadsheets and notebooks.
What is the secret for successful QuickBooks users? First the program file has been setup correctly for them and the way they do business. For the basic business just starting up the QuickBooks company templates work great. When you install the program, QuickBooks asks about the type of business and has prefilled account names and types available for use. Another great thing about QuickBooks is that even after the initial setup it is very easy to customize. Your accountant or a certified QuickBooks advisor can assist you with this customization if needed.
Second, successful QuickBooks users take the time to receive some training, either through a live course, or using free QuickBooks training provided with the software. Even an hour of basic training can save time and headaches when you need to make your first bank deposit or write your first check.
So, in actuality you may need both an accountant and personal knowledge of QuickBooks to some degree, and your time, desire and knowledge will determine how much of each. An accountant can do it all if you don’t have the time or desire. QuickBooks can be a tool used to do it all yourself if you have the desire, with your accountant only reviewing the numbers a few times a year. Be honest with yourself and decide where your time and energy will be most profitable, and you will be successful. Call Squire at (801) 225-6900 if you decide you need help.