What is a Virtual CFO?

I think it’s safe to say that I’m a big fan of making sure entrepreneurs and small business owners understand the financial side of their business. I spend a lot of time on client education in my blog, on my YouTube channel, and via my Be Your Own CFO course. However, there is a point in every growing business where the owner must transition from working in the business – and start working on it. This means stepping away from reconciling accounts, tax projections, and updating spreadsheets, and begin focusing on growing what you love. The next natural progression for your business is to hire a Virtual Chief Financial Officer (Virtual CFO). Your Virtual CFO is a contract professional who is responsible for all of the financials of your business.

My goal as a Virtual CFO is to take the financial stress (and headache) away from the business owner.  I offer a very robust and affordable package which focuses on providing the business owner with the financial reports they need to make quick decisions in their blooming business.

How to work with a Virtual CFO

The first thing I do with any potential new client is hop on a quick 15 minute call to learn more about their business and see where I can be of assistance. Even though we live in a virtual world, I think it’s important to hop on a call or video chat to get a better sense of personality and start building the side of the work relationship that an email cannot convey. Here are a few of my tips on hiring a CPA.

Hint: Hire someone who you will enjoy working with – someone who understands and cares about the success of your business.

Once the call is over, I summarize the information we discussed and send it over for your review. If everything looks great, I’ll send over an engagement letter and will begin the on-boarding process. On-boarding includes gaining access to any required financial information.  Once you’re business financials are all caught up is when the real magic happens.  Every month your bookkeeping will be completed and a report will be prepared for your review. Each quarter, quarterly tax calculations and tax payment vouchers will also be prepared for you, and I’ll schedule a call to clarify any financial questions you have.  Tax time will also be a breeze – my team and I will prepare your return and provide you with advice for your financial future.

What to look for in a Virtual CFO

I may be a little biased, but I would recommend hiring someone who has CPA at the end of their name – for a few reasons:

  1. The Certified Public Accountants (CPA) designation is one of the most widely recognized and highly trusted professional designations in the business world.
  2. A CPA is licensed by a state, and must keep current with tax laws in order to maintain a license in that state.
  3. After they are licensed, CPAs also must comply with continuing education requirements in order to maintain their licenses; accountants and bookkeepers don’t have this requirement or restriction.
  4. CPAs must abide by the AICPA Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct and are at risk of loosing their license if they do not comply with these rules and regulations.

In addition to this qualification, I would recommend finding someone who is flexible, willing to adapt to your business needs,  and allows you to focus on building your business.  Your Virtual CFO will provide you with vast financial knowledge and expertise at a fraction of the cost to bring someone into your team full-time.

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Amy Northard, CPA

The Accountant for Creatives
+ taxes + bookkeeping + consulting
+ Hang out with me over on Instagram!

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