Author: Jeff Bronswick, Managing Partner
Let’s face it, in a service oriented business, the word partnership is tossed around far more often than it should be. However, this doesn’t mean that the idea of a business partnership should be minimized.
In reality, the idea of a solid business partnership is valuable for all parties because in a true partnerships the reciprocity is mutually beneficial and all parties win.
So what are the most important partnerships a business can have?
In my experience, the relationship between a business and its employees, customers and suppliers all prosper when the relationships are treated more as partnerships and less as transactions.
Your CPA falls squarely into the category of supplier, and more importantly they should unquestionably be a partner. Think about it, who has a more intimate knowledge of your business and your finance than your CPA?
Begging the question, why do so many CPA firms and their customers have relationships that are so transactional?
Welcome to your CPA, May we do your Taxes?
The relationship between a business and a CPA when it is only Tax Accounting is more of a drive-thru approach than a partner approach.
Remember the original Model-T?
Henry Ford said “You can have it in any color you like, as long as you choose black.”
At one time maybe the Black Model T was suitable for everyone, kind of like a CPA that only does your Taxes. But in today’s world with so many business challenges from Cash Flow to Compliance and beyond, a CPA that does more leads to businesses that produce more.
Today when you choose your automobile you have the luxury of choosing dozens (if not more) of colors. Most people like choice as long as we don’t have too many choices.
When working with a CPA you want choices in additional accounting and advisory services that help your specific business needs.
In my experience here are some benefits that many businesses can benefit from.
Now whether your firm offers these services or not is something you will need to determine, however a good business minded firm should definitely have solutions for these important business needs.
Cash flow and profit planning services
Cash flow projection – What are your cash flow needs today, tomorrow and into the future?
Profit and loss projection – Do you know based on current run rate and trend what your year will end up like?
Budget creation – Have you built a well thought out budget that addresses your current and future business plans?
Financial projection “what if” models – Many budgets bet on good outcomes, have you considered how a bad week or month may affect your cash requirements?
Business accounting check-up
Enhance accounting accuracy – Are your methods and statements correct and in line with your performance?
Analyze your P&L – Not only understanding the result, but what can be changed to realize better results.
Provide you with valuable feedback – Could you improve your bottom line quickly by making some small modifications?
Part-Time CFO and Controller Services
Improve the quality and timeliness of your financial information.
Gain an improved understanding of the financial side of your business
Have a knowledgeable person in-house when you need them there.
Business valuation services
Know what your business is worth to prepare for: Are you aware of the opportunities to exit or grow through M&A?
Mergers and acquisitions – Understanding targets and financial requirements to expand using this method.
Sales – What can you expect in a sale? What is the best type of sale (Stock, Asset)?
Shareholder transactions – Can you sell to your partners or employees?
If you want to acquire a business:
Due diligence services – When acquiring businesses there is a lot more than meets the eye, are you ready for the process?
Fraud risk assessment
Financial Controls – Does your company have strong controls?
Areas of Improvement – Are there controls that can be improved?
Fraud Risk – Wherever there is fraud risk, we can recommend solutions.
A Better Approach to Partnership
The bread and butter of most CPA’s is the standard Tax and Accounting Services.
However, there is undoubtedly more value for a business that looks to partner with their CPA to meet their business goals and objectives.
Partnership leads to great outcomes and your CPA should recognize that.
Do you know your business goals?
Perhaps your CPA can help?