Every accountancy practice has differentiators. This is the same in every industry, usually referred to as USPs (Unique Selling Proposition). However, in the accountancy field, there are three specific types of services offered to clients, excluding the USPs usually associated with other businesses.
Below is what each service entails. Use the descriptions to help you narrow down the type of accountancy service that is best positioned to help your business grow.
Compliance services can include Companies House Annual Returns, Confirmation Statements, Self-Assessment, End-of-Year Accounting, Partnership Tax Returns, Corporate Tax Returns, VAT Returns, Person of Significant Control Reporting, Payroll, Auto-enrolment, Incorporation and all HMRC Filings.
Not every business will require all of the above services. As an example, a start-up business operating as a Sole Proprietor would not require Companies House reporting. As your business grows, there can come a point when it would be beneficial to operate as a Limited Company. At that stage, Incorporation services, and continued Companies House Reporting for compliance requirements would be beneficial.
It is relatively easy to start a business. It is not easy to transform a business into a success. Many start-ups get by. Unfortunately, most fail. Of those that do fail, the vast majority of those will have been operating without a business plan. Yet, even if the business started with a business plan, veering too far off course without revising the strategy for business growth, can lead to failure.
Advisory services from accountants focus on developing strategic business plans, consistently reviewing the progress towards strategic goals and helping clients/business owners reach their goals through timely business advice – meaning advice on changing course when things are getting too off-track.
Important to note in business at this stage is that execution is the most important part of the strategy and that is on the business owner.
Accountants can help you articulate your company’s purpose, vision, value proposition, and core competencies to turn it into a cohesive actionable business plan. One that can help the business owner execute the plan to grow the business.
Strategic Accounting Services
Advisory services focus on helping businesses grow, hopefully reaching a stage when setting up a corporation would be beneficial. Running a corporation is much different from operating a Limited Company or Partnership. It’s at this high level of business that strategic accounting services are most beneficial. However, you do not need to be a corporation to benefit from strategic accounting practices.
Strategic Accounting Practices can include mergers, and acquisitions to help with growth, and can also be used to form exit strategies that could be used either as part of retirement planning, or succession planning in family businesses.
Which accountancy service is right for you?
At the very basic level, compliance services are what any certified accountant can help you with. In most small businesses, technology is enabling sole-proprietors to manage most (if not all) of the compliance services on their own with minimal time. Accountants, including us at The Hughes Partnership, are also using technology in partnership with our clients, enabling us to spend less time working on compliance and reporting to focus more on helping UK SMEs grow through our business advisory services.
At the strategic level, we offer a range of services to help with everything from reducing tax liability, financial forecasting and reporting, right through to capital raising and liaising with banks and other financial institutions to help raise investment cash to give your business extra buying power right when you need it most.