Are you a recent graduate, an employee of a company or an employee of an accounting firm, and you want to start your own business? Here are 4 tips for opening your own accounting firm.
Go solo or in duo
Whatever your professional situation, you must ask yourself the question of a solo or duo launch when creating an accounting firm. If you set up your accounting firm on your own, you will have more work to do, and you will have to endure the relative loneliness of the boss. However, you will have less revenue to generate at launch in order to be able to pay yourself.
With an associate, you will have less work, since you will be able to divide up the tasks, and you will be able to exchange, but in return you will have to generate a higher turnover in order to be able to pay two people.
The question therefore really deserves to be asked because both of these solutions have advantages and disadvantages.
In all cases you will have to choose the legal form of your business, but you have an advantage in this task since as an accountant it is part of your skills.
Open an accounting firm from scratch or take over a clientele
The answer to this question depends on your situation. Either you have funds or you don't. If you have the funds, taking over a practice can be a great way to get started right away with a great clientele… However, this comes at a very steep price.
If you start from scratch, the most important investment will be your local future. It should be adapted to your needs, your catchment area and your budget as a novice accountant.
Regarding your fees, experience allows you to set competitive prices, but your prices must remain in line with the market. Establish a serious forecast of charges, structural costs, etc. and analyze the prices charged by your colleagues will allow you to develop your fee schedule.
Generalist or specialized accounting firm
This is another essential question you will need to answer: are you going to create a generalist or specialized accounting firm? Except perhaps if you are locating in a small community and relying only on local customers, the trend in public accounting is towards specialization. Depending on your skills, your expertise and, above all, your experience, you will be able to offer a range of particular services and specialize in a sector of activity or in a type of business to set yourself apart from the competition and quickly develop a clientele. You can thus choose to become an accountant specializing in the self-employed, or in SMEs for example.
Approach your first clients
This is where the sinews of war are when you want to start an accounting firm: canvassing the first clients.
A first avenue is to approach large firms to offer them to work as a subcontractor on small projects. This can represent up to 20% of turnover for a business starting out.
You can also prospect future business leaders by giving training in business creation. These project leaders do not necessarily have the network, and they will be happy to discover an accountant whose skills they will have been able to validate thanks to the training received. You can offer a commercial gesture to this type of customer.
You can also use the services of a networking platform between business leaders and accountants. The advantage: you get qualified traffic from a site that has the same target as you, and you can quickly, easily and inexpensively generate contacts.
However, you must not neglect your own communication: you must have your own website, well referenced and updated, why not with a blog / advice section to showcase your expertise and work on your SEO. Business cards, flyers, etc. should also be included in your start-up budget: an accounting firm is a business like any other: it must make itself known in order to find clients.