• London 020 7118 4422

ACCOUNTANTS - CITY OF LONDON OFFICE

Tel: 020 7118 4422 - Tax Compute Accounting, 101 Finsbury Pavement, Moorgate, London, EC2A 1RS - info@taxcompute.co.uk

Tax Compute are Chartered Management Accountants regulated by CIMA.
Tax Compute's offices are in Cheltenham and EC2 in the city of London.
We are close to Moorgate and Liverpool Street underground stations. We specialise in supporting small businesses and contractors.
We operate on fixed monthly rates for Limited Companied, Partnerships and Contractors. Our prices have no hidden extras.
Please contact us for a free consultation tel: 020 7118 4422

SOURCING THE RIGHT ACCOUNTANT

The big question here is how do you find a good accountant in London? There are many to choose from. For a small business choosing the right accountant is an important decision to make because making the wrong decision can cost you time and money. Below are some points and questions every small business owner should consider in order to make an informed decision. Here are some basic tips.

  • A recommendations from a work colleague is always a good starting point. But not always. Their business may be very different to yours and the Accountant may not quite have the right skills for your particular business. Some accountants specialise so it may not be the best choice for you. So if you are recommended an accountant make sure he has the right business experience and knowledge.
  • Try to meet the Accountant and see if you are comfortable and feel confident about him/her. Ask questions about the Practice and what he/she can do for you. Always meet at least 3 different firms and take your time.
  • The person you initially meet or speak to on the phone might not be the person who actually handles your account. So make sure that you will be assigned a dedicated accountant who understands your business. At bigger firms you may first meet a Partner but in reality the office junior is handling your account.
  • Always ask what their qualifications are. Are they regulated by a professional body? For example CIMA, ACCA and ICAEW members must have professional indemnity insurance and you can check their status at the institute website.
  • Make sure the firm has a practising certificate. CIMA, ACCA and ICAEW all issue certification to their members and members are carefully vetted and regulated to ensure ethical and professional conduct.
  • Price is important and prices vary considerably. Make sure you are getting value for money and the quoted monthly fees cover all your accountancy needs. Carefully read the engagement letter and make sure this is the case.
  • You can reduce the fees payable by doing some of the bookkeeping yourself and keeping your accounts well organised and in good order.
  • Try to avoid signing up for a long period. Imagine signing a yearlong contract and after a few months you realise you made the wrong decision.
  • Review the prospective firm's website. This can be a pointer. What is the technical content like? Are they publishing news articles on current accounting and tax issues? Do they look professional?
  • There are many sole practitioners who are very competent and can provide a good service at a competitive price but what happens if they are taken ill? Do they have a continuity agreement in place with another firm? Is this a risk you need to take? If you prefer to work with a small firm is it better to sign up with a firm with two or three accountants or more?

These are some of the issues you can consider when choosing an accountant. Not an exhaustive list but food for thought. We at Tax Compute tick all the boxes and our prices are very competitive. If you want to find a good accountant in London then consider engaging us at Tax Compute. Hope this article was helpful for you.

Tax Compute's offices are in EC2 in the city of London. We are close to Moorgate and Liverpool Street underground stations.

ACCOUNTANCY QUALIFICATIONS

The principle and most prestigious accountancy qualifications in the UK are the:

  • Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland (ICAS)

So what are the main differences between the Chartered Management, Chartered Certified and Chartered? All are outstanding professional qualifications and all can provide excellent services to a broad range of small businesses. Worth mentioning that some accountants specialise in the type of services they provide and focus their attention mainly on one area. For example they may specialise in providing services to Contractors, Landlords, and Pubs etc...

Below we will try and give you some basic information on some of the differences between these qualifications. But please note that experience and individual ability are factors which can be more important than the actual qualification. For example Mr. Smith ACCA may be a much better accountant for your business than Mr. Jones ACA and vice versa. So if you are about to engage an accountant look as much at the individual as the qualification. Remember there are some qualified accountants in London who may lack the relevant experience to your particular business.

What is CIMA?
To qualify as a Chartered Management Accountant you will first need to pass 14 examinations. After that you will need to submit an application for associate membership which will be assessed by the CIMA board. The board will only approve membership once the requisite level of experience has been achieved. To become a fellow you will need to demonstrate at least three years of senior, strategic or technical leadership experience. Once granted fellowship you can use the designated FCMA (Fellow Chartered Management Accountant) and CGMA (Chartered Global Management Accountant).
Chartered Management Accountants usually serve their apprenticeship in Industry and Commerce and therefore have real business experience before going into private practice
CIMA is in partnership with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) which makes it a truly global qualification. With 600,000 members worldwide it is the world's largest professional accountancy body. This partnership with the AICPA aims to establish management accounting as the most valued profession in business worldwide.

What is ACCA?
The main difference with CIMA is that ACCA is geared much more towards financial accounting and is less focused on management accounting and business and financial strategy. Like CIMA you need to pass 14 examinations and go through a rigorous selection criteria to gain associate membership and then fellowship. Like CIMA this is an excellent qualification and ACCA accountants are well qualified for services in private practice, audit and taxation.
Looking at the main differences with the CIMA qualification. CIMA covers more management accounting, business strategy and financial strategy than the ACCA syllabus. Chartered Certified Accountants can serve their apprenticeship either in Industry and Commerce or in an Accountancy practice. Therefore, like CIMA they may have real business experience before going into private practice.

What is ACA?
A Chartered Accountant will always argue that their qualification is the most prestigious but many ACCA and CIMA accountants would beg to differ. Like CIMA and ACCA this is an excellent qualification with rigorous requirements and assessment for membership. To become an ACA you need to complete 450 days of relevant work experience and pass 15 examinations. Also, you can only train and study to become an ACA with a firm of chartered accountants who have the requisite approval from the Institute.

A Chartered Accountant will always argue that their qualification is the most prestigious but many ACCA and CIMA accountants would beg to differ. Like CIMA and ACCA this is an excellent qualification with rigorous requirements and assessment for membership. To become an ACA you need to complete 450 days of relevant work experience and pass 15 examinations. Also, you can only train and study to become an ACA with a firm of chartered accountants who have the requisite approval from the Institute.

In terms of examination content the ACA is very similar to the ACCA and geared much more towards financial accounting and is less focused on management accounting and business and financial strategy. One criticism to make of Chartered Accountants is that they may spend their entire working lives in private practice and therefore may lack the strategic skills gained by working in industry and commerce.

Hope this article was helpful.

Tax Compute's offices are in EC2 in the city of London. We are close to Moorgate and Liverpool Street underground stations.

ACCOUNTANCY SERVICES

WHAT SERVICES DO ACCOUNTANTS OFFER?

Below is a list of services that most accredited accountants will offer. We at Tax Compute include many of the services in our fixed monthly fees. When engaging an accountant always make sure that the fees are sensibly priced and not excessive. For example we know of firms that charge £750 + VAT to set up a limited company whereas many firms undertake this for free when you sign up. Price is important so make sure you get a good accredited accountant at the right price.

Start-up

  • Initial meetings and business structure review. Most accountants will advise on what is the best business structure e.g. Sole Trader, Limited Company or Partnership.
  • Company Formation if applicable. (Company set-up and filing with Companies House)
  • Register you for self-assessment with HMRC.
  • Register your business if applicable for VAT, Corporation Tax and Payroll


Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly and Annual tasks

  • Weekly or monthly payroll
  • Company Secretarial (All HMRC and Co. House filings and administration)
  • Company Accounts & Corporation Tax (Preparation & annual filing)
  • Bookkeeping
  • Prepare dividend declarations forms
  • Board meeting administration
  • Completing your self-assessment
  • Tax Planning
  • IR35 review if applicable
  • Provide a registered office address for the company if required

Hope this article was helpful.

Tax Compute's offices are in EC2 in the city of London. We are close to Moorgate and Liverpool Street underground stations.

IS YOUR ACCOUNTANT QUALIFIED?

Many people are unaware of the fact that anyone in the UK can call themselves an accountant. Providing they do not use designated initials such as ACCA, ACMA or ACA they are free to call themselves accountants. That is why it is important to make sure that the firm you engage as your accountants are properly regulated and have a practising certificate from their institute. A practising certificate will ensure that the firm has professional indemnity insurance and clients are covered for any mistakes that take place. Not everyone in the firm will be fully qualified but most will hold some form of qualification such as AAT or part qualified etc...

Tax Compute are Chartered Management Accountants regulated by CIMA and we are also Certified Practising Accountants regulated by the ICPA. Both CIMA and the ICPA provide a help line for its members for professional and ethical advice. This ensures clients at Tax Compute get well researched and the best possible advice. CIMA members are licensed by CIMA to work as members in practice in accordance with prescribed regulations. The Institute enforces rigorous standards of conduct and the highest standards of professionalism and ethics. The same is true of ACCA and ICAEW and others.

Members of the principle professional institutes must hold professional indemnity insurance in order to practice and for cover in the event of major costly mistakes. That is one of the reasons that when sourcing an accountant you should ensure that the practice holds a practising certificate with one of the major accountancy bodies. You will then have important redress back to the Institute if anything goes wrong.

The following are considered to be the top professional institutes. The list is in no particular order.

  • Chartered Certified Accountant ACCA or FCCA. Member or Fellow or the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • Chartered Accountant ACA or FCA. Member or Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
  • Chartered Management Accountant ACMA or FCMA. Member or Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • Chartered Accountant CA. Member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland (ICAS)
  • Chartered Tax Advisor CTA, ATII or FTII. Member or Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT)
  • Certified Public Accountant ASPA or FSPA. Associate or Fellow of the Association of Certified Public Accountants (ACPA)

How to check an accountant is registered.
Before engaging an accountant you can validate his/her status with the Institute by going to the relevant website or calling the institute for details.

Hope this article was helpful.

Tax Compute's offices are in EC2 in the city of London. We are close to Moorgate and Liverpool Street underground stations.

Accountants London