When do you need an accountant in Singapore?

There is no correct answer to this question, but if you ever find yourself in one of these situations, it may be best to contact a professional accounting firm:

1. When starting your business

At first, your business is starting up, and you feel like you don’t know what to do with your finances. You’re setting up the company’s supply chain, managing payroll, and making sure cash flow is going where it needs to go. In addition, it’s important to keep your revenues on the books.
If you are not familiar with the basics of accounting, hiring someone to do the bookkeeping for you may be your best option for your business’s first few months. Having a professional look at your finances without telling you how to spend your money in the business can be beneficial later.

2. You don't know how taxes work in a business setting

Second, filing taxes is difficult from a business owner’s perspective. One misstep can cost the business hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.
By hiring a professional accountant in Singapore, you make the most of your taxes by filing correctly during the tax season. In fact, accountants can help you navigate your way through taxes to maximize savings and deductions.

3. Your business is growing exponentially

Thirdly, you are at the stage where you want to expand the business. As a result, hire more people, take on more suppliers, or get capital from a financial institution to increase the business’s growth.
At some point in the life of your business, you will come across a deal or two that could grow your business quickly. This is a sudden influx of cash, and it becomes difficult to keep track of.
When the business is at this stage, there is a risk that you will lose control of your finances.
Thus, hiring a professional accountant in Singapore will help you manage the growth of the business, especially when it comes to finances. By managing your books, you will be able to make better decisions based on real-time financial data.

4. You need to raise capital

Fourthly, if your business needs to apply for a loan or grant, you can seek an accountant’s help. Financial institutions such as banks will need detailed financial statements that will tell them how the business is doing.

5. You decide on the business’s legal structure

Fifthly, the business’s structure has legal implications, and the decision to choose a structure should not be taken lightly. For example, if your business is a sole proprietorship, you should be aware that you are self-employed and billing is done under your name, not the company’s. If you work with a professional accountant, you will be able to save money on your taxes by doing your deductions correctly.

6. IRAS audits you

Sixthly, if you are a small business, it is unlikely that you will be audited by IRAS, mainly because of the large number of small businesses and the few government auditors.

What are the accountant's duties in Singapore?

An accountant can have a variety of tasks, including the following:

➤ Determining payroll needs, running the company's monthly payroll, maintaining payroll data
➤ Coordinate with internal and external auditors when auditing the company
➤ Explain company invoices and accounting policies to staff, vendors, and customers
➤ Prepare and review company budget requirements, revenues, expenses, payroll data, billing data and other accounting statements
➤ Analyze and review company budgets and expenditures, contracts and grants
➤ Prepare company profit and loss statements and closing and cost accounting reports on a monthly basis
➤ Analyze revenue and expense trends and advise on budgetary limits and expense controls
➤ Update general ledger accounts and corporate financial transactions
➤ Ensure the company’s digitization financial data and reports using robust accounting software
➤ Address discrepancies in accounting
➤ Implement appropriate accounting controls and procedures
➤ Ensure financial databases’ maintenance, a suite of necessary computer software and manual filing systems

What are the steps to finding your accountant in Singapore?

1. Search for local accountants

If you think you will need to meet frequently with your accountant in Singapore, it is best to hire a full-time accountant. You may also choose an accounting service provider in your area who is conveniently accessible.

2. Understand what you are looking for in an accountant

Before hiring an accountant, it is important to find out about their experience and certifications if they handle accounts for businesses similar to yours.

Here is a list of qualifications you can use to help you choose your accountant in Singapore:

➤ Persistence with details
➤ Time management skills
➤ Organizational skills
➤ Accounting software and computer skills
➤ Communication skills
➤ Business acumen
➤ Work integrity
➤ Resilience and flexibility
➤ Leadership skills

3. Know what you will pay and when

It is significant to discuss with them your company’s accounting needs and their rates for these services. This will allow you to ask how often they will contact you and their billing process and cycle, determine if there are any hidden costs. You can also negotiate fees and costs with the accounting firm.

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4. Ask them the right questions

You need to make sure that the accountant you choose will meet your accounting needs. Ask them a few questions like:

➤ Do you have experience working for companies like mine?
➤ Do you have experience working with IRAS?
➤ How many years have you worked as an accountant or accounting service provider?
➤ How often will you advise me on tax matters?
➤ Can you handle my accounting needs throughout the year?

5. Know how to get the most out of your accountant in Singapore

Your designated accountant will handle the business’s compliance and financial aspects. So, to get the most out of them here is a list of tips:

➤ Choose the right accountant for your business
➤ Be clear about your accounting needs
➤ Keep your company's financial records up to date
➤ Apply their advice to improve your cash flow
➤ Communicate with them often
➤ Ask for their help in meeting deadlines
➤ See if they can help you get a business loan

6. How do you know if they are right for you?

You hire a Singapore accounting firm to help you with your compliance and business development. You need to make sure they are a good fit for your business, to do this you need to:

1. Ask if they have experience in accounting for businesses similar to yours in terms of size, transaction volume, niche and industry.

2. If your business caters to foreign clients, make sure your accountant has global expertise, knowledge of international tax codes and experience communicating with regulators in different countries.

3. Ask them how they keep up with changes in the laws of other countries.

4. Ask them for references from their previous or existing clients.

5. When talking to them, pay particular attention to how they communicate.

7. What is the first thing to do when working with an accountant in Singapore?

The first thing to do when you start working with your accountant is to ask for the following information:

➤ The records your business needs to keep
➤ Tips on how to prepare your business for tax filing
➤ Business expenses you can deduct
➤ Estimated taxes you must pay and when they are due
➤ Ways to improve your cash flow

Finally, your accountant knows your business inside and out. As a result, they can really help you take your business to the next level. However, you need to invest your time to have a good and healthy relationship with your accountant.

Start a conversation with a accountant in Singapore

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