Below you will find a list of the most commonly found questions we get asked
After chatting and confirming you wish to join us, the person you met will take you through the onboarding personally, something that isn’t that common with other accountants and they will introduce you to other members of our team; we have several people certified to use your bookkeeping software. We believe in regular touchpoints so we learn more about you and your business as we go along. Understanding your business is key.
Our onboarding process has been built to make starting working with us a smooth and easy experience and where you are moving from an old accountant, making sure the process is as stress free as possible, ensuring we can quickly start to make a difference to your business.
We walk you through a “7” step process, often undertaken concurrently:
- Where this is the case, we will issue a professional letter to your old accountant asking for the information we need to take over your accounts and tax affairs. See a separate FAQ on changing accountants. We agree with your old accountant who is handling what in terms of the services we are taking over (so for example who is doing which year/month/quarter for each service). Please settle your fees with the old accountant as part of this process.
- We are required by law to undertake anti-money laundering reviews on you and your business including checking ID electronically. We will combine this exercise with a request for missing information.
- We will issue you with a letter of engagement to sign via our online secure Portal, setting out in detail your and our responsibilities and the services and price we agreed. This step includes setting up the Direct Debit with us.
- Setting up the agreed apps, usually bookkeeping and processing of “paperwork” when bookkeeping not already operational.
- A review of your bookkeeping.
- A date will be agreed for the onboarding session to discuss the goals of your business and yourself personally and also provide training for you on the agreed apps, where required.
- Registering internally on our systems and also with HMRC (Agent Authority request for you – PIN numbers received in the post, please forward to us asap).
After you speak to your old accountant about the change of accountants, we will write a letter to them (a professional letter) where we ask for all the information we need to take over all your affairs. It is a requirement of professional accountants to promptly respond to professional letters. It is always easiest to get the information from the old accountant but if there are difficulties there are always other avenues to obtain the required information; our professional bodies have also put in place procedures to help speed up responses.See our FAQ, Do I need to speak to my old accountant?
An important part of the process of switching accountants is ensuring that it is clear who is handling what. As part of any change in our appointment for any client, for whatever reason, we will ensure that each service has agreed responsibilities (for example, us or your old accountant) and for which period for that service. Most of the time this is very clear. This is called the disengagement process for the old accountant; both the old and new accountants will want to be sure who is doing what and payroll is dealt with first and always as a priority from both accountants. We involve you in this disengagement process. You should also settle any final fees to the old accountant.
Should we undertake the previous year end accounts? Well, the sooner we get going the better for you and us but sometimes it is just easier for the old accountant to handle these and you may prefer that when handing over.Finally, why not read our testimonials and client stories for peace of mind.
We can think of quite a few reasons:
- Accountants in practice deal with HMRC and Companies House daily
- Help minimise your tax bills
- Help you with your bookkeeping and give you ideas on how to improve your financial systems
- Save you time
- Reduce worry
- Help you understand your financial numbers giving you confidence to grow your business
- Make sure your tax bill is right and submitted on time at HMRC, same with filing your accounts on time at Companies House
- Help you raise money and help you manage your debtors (monies owing from customers)
- Help you plan your business and family finances for the future
- Peace of mind!
- Deliver confidence that your financial affairs are well managed
Chartered Accountants generally are also trained to look at the bigger picture, not just crunching numbers.
Jan, our founder worked in industry for over 15 years, giving uniquely two elements of experience both in practice advising other businesses but also as a Finance Director as part of board of directors running a business in industry. He has passed this experience and knowledge onto the team via Marie and Thomas. Jan has worked across a wide variety of business sectors as a finance director, in businesses of different sizes, from start ups to employing hundreds of people and multi site and international. In addition our practice has clients across a wide variety of business sectors from start up to employing over 50 people, including across multi site.
There are many different professional bodies of accountants, it must be very confusing for non-accountants. In fact there are many excellent unqualified accountants, “qualified by experience” as we say; furthermore there are some bad Chartered Accountants out there! However we do feel that the Chartered Accountancy qualification (ICAEW – FCA or another Institute, Certified Accountants – ACCA) is a more likely guarantee of a certain level of professionalism/quality of service. We are subject to regulatory visits by our institute (ICAEW) and we are pleased to say that there were no findings arising on our most recent visit.