What Does an Accounting Consultant Do?

One of the most critical areas in an organization is the accounting department. It handles several key responsibilities and its work is vital to the overall success of the organization. This has led to some organizations and businesses opting for accounting consulting. This can be beneficial for your organization, but it is important to gain a proper understanding of the types of services one can offer before hiring a consultant.

What Does an Accounting Consultant Do?

The main task of an accounting consultant is to help the management and other stakeholders comprehend the different reports generated by the bookkeepers. They study the data presented and help the management understand what the data and numbers represent for the organization. They also analyze the financial statements and draw the management’s attention to the most important numbers.

Financial forecasting is another vital task for accounting consultants. They aid in ascertaining the profitability of the organization. By analyzing the accounts payable, they can determine areas where money can be saved and by which method. These consultants can additionally help the organization improve their bookkeeping processes by setting up practices that ensure consistency in the accounting. They can analyze the accounting requirements further and find out if additional services are needed.

How to Know If you Have a Great Consultant?

For an accounting consultancy to be recognized as a valuable partner by its clients, it needs to provide exceptional services. These include some or all of the following:

Financial Data Management This requires the collection, storage and analysis of financial data. The consultant must work closely with the client for the identification of financial data sources. Best practices for collecting and processing financial data must be established and implemented early on.

The consultant must also be able to process the data and store it in the correct format. This must help the client fulfill their own financial obligations. The client may also require help in the development, implementation and maintenance of financial control processes.

Specialized Advice Provision — Consultants must provide financial advice that is relevant and accurate. The quality of the advice will affect how the client works with their full-time in-house accountants. Providing specialized advice will give clients a reason to continue their partnership with the consultant since they can see the benefit they bring to their company. Accounting specializations, such as forensic auditing, are beneficial to a client and may contribute to the growth of the consultant’s client-base.

Accounting Systems Development — With the rise of lean business processes, organizations are implementing lean principles in their accounting department as well. This has increased the need for modern accounting systems to support the organization’s requirements. For this, a consultant is often hired.

The creation of a modern accounting system requires a thorough analysis of the industry structure and business model of the client. The consultant must anticipate and take into consideration the probable future changes that may occur in accounting practices. The data gathered can be used for the development of the accounting system, and should be tested and adjusted before delivery to the client. The system must be continuously monitored so that issues can be addressed as they come up.

Financial Compliance Enforcement — The importance of financial compliance cannot be under-estimated. It can affect the very survival of an organization. Accounting consulting service companies must make it a point to guide and support their clients to ensure their compliance with the applicable accounting standards. For example, financial declarations must be made regularly and due diligence must be observed during the appointment of board members.

Consultants should audit each client’s financial results annually, calculate the tax dues and complete the appropriate tax filings. They can also help the client’s accounting department in the preparation of the periodic financial statements.

Knowing the requirements to be a consultant can help you evaluate the quality of services you are receiving. NuVest Management Services provides consulting as well as accounting and bookkeeping services. If your company is looking to get a third-party opinion on its financial health, contact us today to make sure the job is done right.