Top Accounting firms in South Africa for Small Businesses
Accounting is one of the essential services of any business, be it small or big.
Businesses are often forced to spend a lot on the accounting department. There are various approaches that a business can take when it comes to their accounting needs. It is a good idea to go through the different options and choose the one that will provide the most benefits without having to cost your business a lot of money.
One of the most common options people take is hiring an accounting firm.
The accounting firms take care of all the tax and accounting needs of the business and give you the chance to focus on important tasks that help increase sales and grow your company.
What Is An Accounting Firm? Why is it important for your business?
An accounting firm mainly offers services like accounting and auditing for your business. It produces financial records, so that you can easily track your revenues and expenses. Providing consulting on your business’s overall financial health is yet another important service that an accounting firm offers.
It helps you with long-range planning, such as buying property or upgrading your infrastructure. You will be, hence, able to determine how to break even and what your cash-flow needs are.
Accounting firms conduct audits by examining not only financial records, but also the processes and controls in place to ensure records are being properly kept, policies are being adhered to, and your financial practices help support your business goals and are the most efficient way to do so.
Many accounting firms offer a range of tax services. The firm’s accountants can help you figure out a new tax code to help ensure your financial reporting practices are in compliance with current IRS regulations, determine your company’s tax liability, and make sure you meet filing requirements and deadlines.
With these services, you can plan your next moves, figure out whether you are making a profit and make decisions about your company’s growth.
How To Choose An Accounting Firm For Your Small Business?
Whether you’re a business requiring a complete accountancy service or an individual in need of tax advice, choosing the right firm is important.
1. Know your business needs
You need first to understand the kind of work or responsibilities you want the accounting firm to handle for your business. If you need monthly financial statements and bookkeeping tasks, a non-certified accountant or bookkeeper can be hired. But to get tax planning advice, tax returns prepared, or audited financial statements, you need a CPA or certified public accountant. Check the type of accountants the firm has.
2. Look for small business experience
Large accounting firms like the Big 4 often charge higher fees than small to mid-sized firms. That may not be beneficial if you are a small business and have just started. You need someone who works with small businesses, and it could also be a bonus if the accountant works with businesses in your industry. While working for clients from a specific industry for a long time, some accountants get to know the related challenges very well.
Fees are an important consideration – after all, your accounting firm’s fees need to fit in with your business or personal budget.
Most firms calculate their fees in one of two ways – either per hour or at a fixed rate. The way in which fees are calculated and the overall amount charged depends on the firm, so make sure you clarify how much everything is going to cost before agreeing to move forward.
4. Ask About Accounting Software
Before you choose an accountant, you’ll want to ask what software they recommend for their small business customers. You may find some accountants who are using the same old desktop accounting software. They do not want to switch to the latest online accounting solutions. You want to invest in an accounting software system that you can grow into in 3-5 years.
5. Decide Whether You Need an Accountant or a CPA Firm
Many small business owners start by managing their taxes on their own. Unlike the past, it has become much easier for business owners to do simple bookkeeping tasks with the help of advanced software like ProfitBooks, Xero, Sage, and similar others.
But after a certain point in time, it does make sense to hire a professional or a team of accountants to handle accounting, payroll, and tax responsibilities. Whether you need a CPA or a solo accounting firm depends on the scale of your business and the number of transaction you do per month.
6. Range of accounting services
For businesses in particular, you want an accounting firm that offers a range of services – such as financial management, auditing/reporting, cash flow analysis, and succession planning.
This type of firm will do far more than complete your tax return; they’ll be able to provide you with advice regarding your business’s financial situation. It’s also far more efficient to be dealing with one firm for all your financial needs.
Overview of Accounting Firms in South Africa
South Africa has its own professional accounting bodies which decide the rules and regulations for South African accounting firms. These include:
- Southern African Institute for Business Accountants (SAIBA)
- South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA)
- South African Institute of Professional Accountants (SAIPA)
When it comes to accounting, although the Big 4 have name and a well-deserved reputation, companies can get the same expertise and, oftentimes, better service at substantially lower fees when hiring a mid-sized regional accounting firm. If you own a small business, your accounting needs can be fulfilled by smaller firms with greater accessibility.
We have listed the top 7 accounting firms in Australia for small businesses. Let’s check them out:
Mazars is an international, integrated and independent organisation, specialising in audit, accounting, tax and advisory services across a range of markets and sectors. Mazars is present on 6 continents and represented in 21 integrated African countries and 6 correspondent African countries.
They provide a comprehensive and flexible range of services to our clients, specialising in audit, accountancy, advisory, tax and legal services. Their integrated approach is designed to leverage a global talent pool and serve organisations of all sizes, from privately owned businesses to the largest multinational corporations. In order to provide our clients with the best, most relevant services, they continuously invest in developing strong sectoral expertise as well as the technological, scientific and soft skills that will shape professional services in the near future.
Mazars’ key services include:
- Audit, Assurance and Reporting
- Financial advisory services
- Accounting and Outsourcing
- Legal Services
- Actuarial services
2. Moore Stephens
Moore South Africa is one of the top mid-tier accountancy and consultancy networks on the African continent. Managing audits and dealing with multi-jurisdictional tax matters for multi-national operations is the core of their business. They also support entrepreneurs, high-net-worth individuals and SMEs in all aspects of their audit, financial, tax, and business advisory requirements.
Since Moore was founded in London over a century ago, the global network has grown to be one of the largest worldwide. Today it consists of 609 offices in 112 countries, employing 30,569 people and with fees of more than US$ 3.06 billion.
Moore’s key services include:
- Cloud Accounting
- Audit & Assurance
- Business consulting
- Business outsourcing
- Corporate finance
- Employers’ support & payroll
- Forensic investigations & fraud
- Governance, risk & assurance
- IT consulting services
- Tax investigations
- Wealth management
PKF has a proud history of over 90 years in South Africa. It is one of the largest mid-tier accounting firms in South Africa providing high-quality audit, accounting, tax and business advisory solutions.
PKF provides services to many different organisations – large and small, both in the private and public sectors – so, whatever your needs, PKF has the right expertise for you. They understand the challenges you face and the importance of clear decisions and a flexible approach in a complex and ever-changing environment. They will help you to find the right solutions, quickly and effectively.
They know that every business is different. Their member firms tailor their services to meet each client’s specific needs.
PKF’s key services include:
- Audit & Assurance
- Taxation Consulting
- Accounting (incl. cloud accounting)
- Business Risk Services
- Company Secretarial Services
- BEE Verifications
- Internal Audit
- Wealth Management
- Corporate Finance
- Corporate Governance
BDO South Africa is a leading mid-size professional service firm in South Africa. As a member firm of BDO- the world’s 5th largest accountancy network, BDO South Africa is capable of competing with larger firms but still small enough to care. The company describes themselves as agile, innovative and dynamic. They are able to adapt to their client’s particular needs. BDO South Africa provides solutions that are practical and workable. Their clients experience a distinctive level of service, built on exceptional relationships and a deep understanding of their business.
BDO’S key services include:
- Outsourced Accounting and Payroll Services
- Business Advisory
- Corporate Finance
- Risk Management and Internal Audit
- Financial Planning and Wealth Management
- Company Secretarial Services
5. PR Niven & Company
PR Niven & Company is a full-service accounting firm in South Africa, dedicated to providing specialised accounting, auditing, consulting and tax services for small to medium sized businesses.
Founded on the principles of sound and credible financial practices, their experienced and professional team of chartered accountants and registered auditors strive to provide the highest level of integrity and professional advice to ensure their clients’ financial well-being.
Over the years, the firm has advanced from being a traditional accounting practice to now offering various specialised accounting services.
PR Niven & Company’s services include:
- Financial statements
- Maintaining accounting records of business entities
- Management consulting, strategic planning and implementation
- Preparing cash flow statements
- Payroll services
- Completion and submission of VAT and Workmen’s Compensation returns
- Completion of personal and corporate income tax returns
- Annual submission and completion of Employment Equity forms
- Advising on computer systems, their installations and implementation
6. Otonda Chartered Accountants
Otonda Chartered Accountants have been operating for over four years and have gained valuable experience in servicing businesses across different industries
They focus on delivering quality service within the agreed time frames to ensure that our clients receive information that is helpful in decision making when it matters most.
7. SNG Grant Thornton
SNG Grant Thornton is the South African member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd. The firm has progressed expeditiously in every aspect ever since their establishment in 1985. Their aim is to help dynamic organisations unlock their potential for growth by providing meaningful, forward-looking advice.
Their teams and member firms worldwide work and train together, sharing industry experience, technical expertise, and a commitment to excellence.
Whatever the geographic location, they apply the same insight, flexibility and relevant experience. They examine each transaction objectively and work to involve all parties to ensure that clients receive the highest quality advice, providing a truly distinctive client experience.
SNG Thornton’s key services include:
An accounting firm is crucial aspect in your business. You need a firm that is experienced, reliable, and ready to be there for you whenever a need arises. They will not only manage the accounting tasks but also offer practical business advice to support your business planning and growth. Good accounting firms help companies grow, by managing complex financial work and offering advice on practical business issues. This will be guaranteed to save you money in the short and long term. If you choose an accounting firm based on these tips, you reduce your risk of making the wrong choice for your small business.