25 Questions To Ask When Hiring An Accountant

Submitted by HHLOA Partner, Melissa Cottrill, CPA

Often, new business owners ask us one question: How much will it cost for you to do my accounting or taxes? And we’re happy to answer that question as soon as we learn more about your business and whether we can help you with what you need.

However, you might want to ask us more questions than simply inquiring about our fees. Here are some to consider. And yes, feel free to grill us. We appreciate your interest and want you to know us better. Setting expectations at the beginning contributes to a healthy long-term relationship between a business owner and an accountant.


    1. How long have you been in business?
    2. What experience do you have with companies in my industry?
    3. What experience do you have with companies at my revenue level?
    4. What professional bookkeeping, accounting, and tax credentials do you have?
    5. How skilled are you with technology?
    6. What accounting software do you support?
    7. Have you earned any accounting software credentials?
    8. Do you partner with any accounting software vendors, and what benefits do your clients receive from your partnership?
    9. What accounting and tax services do you offer? Do you have a specialty or favorite service or niche?
    10. What services are in-house, and what is outsourced by you to other vendors? (example: payroll)
    11. Are your employees US-based or overseas?
    12. What size is your team, and who would support my business?
    13. How do you bill for services: flat-rate or hourly?
    14. How long is my initial rate locked in?
    15. How often do you raise prices on clients?
    16. What price would you charge to perform the services I need?
    17. Do you offer a guarantee or warranty on your work?
    18. How do you protect and secure my financial data?
    19. Who in your company and supply chain will see my financial data?
    20. How secure is the accounting software you use?
    21. Do you require me to sign a contract or engagement letter?
    22. What is your cancellation policy?
    23. If I pay for software through you and decide to cancel, what happens to my software and data inside the accounting system?
    24. Is your firm environmentally friendly?
    25. Does your firm support diversity and inclusion?