9 Best Business Ideas for Accountants and Auditors in 2024

The life of an accountant or auditor can be somewhat limited; they do a lot of the same things day in and day out. Certainly, businesses are built on the principle that they can do the same thing repeatedly, turning a profit every time they do it.

But who says accountants have to be limited to doing tax returns and audits? Who says they have to do that over and over again? 

There are plenty of business ventures out there that accountants are highly capable of doing based on the kind of knowledge and experience we already have.

This is written based on the assumption that accountants/auditors are good at identifying problems and finding solutions to those problems. Truthfully, that’s what a lot of their work comes down to.

10 Best Business Ideas for Accountants and Auditors

If you are an accountant and you are looking for some business ideas to start, here’s a list of ten business ideas for accountants that I think are feasible for you and still fall within the boundaries of what you’re capable of.

1. Consulting services for small businesses

Small businesses often require expert advice to help them solve specific problems and grow their businesses. Accountants are in the perfect position to provide consulting services to them because they have the knowledge to help business owners in many ways.

Sometimes, the job might just be to set up an accounting system or produce financial statements. Other times, it might involve more complex analysis, such as costing a job, setting up a budget system, or determining the feasibility of adding a new product line. 

This type of work can be very rewarding because you are helping to solve problems and add value for the business owner. This is also an area where the practitioner can move beyond the historical compliance role and into a more proactive type of engagement. 

This work can be done as part of the accountant’s practice or as an internal role in a small business.

2. Financial planning and analysis for individuals

Today’s economy and the increased cost of living make every dollar earned really valuable. People are looking for ways to make sure they are getting the best value out of their hard-earned money. This often involves seeking professional advice.

This presents an opportunity for accountants and auditors with the right approach and expertise to offer their services to individuals who want to find ways to ensure they are making the most of their income. This may range from budgeting advice to investment options.

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Offering this service requires a fair amount of communication and rapport between accountant/auditor and the client, as the service involves the development of a personal financial plan. Completing this service may open doors to further work for the individual’s family or friends.

I have this belief that it is a great way to attract clients in a niche that many accountants and auditors might not have thought about targeting for their services.

3. Tax preparation and planning for individuals and businesses

One service accountants are offering to their clients is tax planning and tax preparation for individuals or businesses. As long as there are people doing business and paying their taxes, this service will never go out of fashion.

Clients who have tax obligations, either individuals or businesses, always have a duty to fulfill their tax obligations to the tax authority, formally known as tax compliance.

Tax compliance means fulfilling the tax obligation with the payable tax amount and time. An accomplishment for a taxpayer is when they can minimize the tax burden, which can be done with good tax planning.

For tax compliance, it consists of one obligation to the tax authority: tax reporting. This is a major obligation, and a failure in tax reporting has potent consequences, such as a tax audit from the tax authority. To prevent bad consequences, a taxpayer can use tax preparation services.

Usually, tax services are charged at an hourly rate, depending on the complexity level of a client’s tax situation.

4. Forensic accounting and fraud investigation

Forensic accountants investigate and uncover facts about an organization’s financial performance, particularly during disasters like major fires or floods. The work of the forensic accountant can be split into two categories.

The first of these is ‘litigation support’ where the accountant is involved in an ongoing case to provide advice, conduct various forms of investigation, and quantify any damages. The other role is ‘investigative accounting’ where the accountant has to review a certain set of financial information to find out if there is any misconduct.

Accountants in these fields blend accounting, auditing, and investigative skills to analyze a company’s financial statements.

This work is often used in the context of fraudulent activity, where an accountant is tasked with finding hidden assets and recovering the losses incurred by some form of fraud.

9 Best Business Ideas for Accountants and Auditors
9 Best Business Ideas for Accountants and Auditors

5. Virtual CFO services for startups and SMEs

Instead of hiring a full-time CFO, many small businesses and startups are looking to outsource this role. In the beginning stages of their business, the CEO or founder may be acting as the CFO.

But their time is often better spent elsewhere, and there are still CFO responsibilities that need to be taken care of. That’s why many small business owners are turning to part-time CFOs as opposed to making a full-time hire. But these CFOs can still be costly.

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This is an opportunity for accountants who are familiar with cash flow management and financial planning because they can use their skills to help these small business owners get their finances in order and make money from it.

Start by offering a basic package that includes financial consulting and a set number of hours for financial analysis. As you bring on more clients, you can begin hiring other accountants who specialize in various areas of finance to work under you and fill out the finance department.

6. Freelance accounting services

For those accountants who have left public accounting and wish to work from home, freelancing is a great opportunity. The first thing you need to do is create a professional resume and pick work references that you can be reached at through phone or email.

Next, you need to decide what type of accounting activities you will provide. A few examples are preparing individual tax returns, general bookkeeping for small businesses, paying bills and recording data for local professional companies, and financial consulting. 

You will also want to establish a home office setting to separate personal work from business opportunities. If you plan on taking jobs from companies, you will need to send at least 50 resumes and cover letters to companies per week. It is best to follow up with a phone call and always be persistent.

Usually, your best bet is to look for local companies so you can meet with them personally. Some freelance jobs can be found through online company searches and members of local community groups such as Rotary International and the Chamber of Commerce.

Maintain an excellent set of records for all potential clients and contact them at least once a month. Keep track of what financial state the business is in and what accounting services will be needed in the future.

The most difficult part of freelancing is obtaining that first client. Once you find a client and begin work, always perform above the customer’s expectations and ask them to keep you in mind if more work arises.

7. Accounting software development

Accounting software development is one of the best business ideas for accountants. If I were to choose this business, my job would be to develop accounting software for businesses, where I would provide customized accounting systems for specific businesses (hotels, restaurants, retailers, etc.).

I would also be looking to provide an outsourcing service where I would help firms to automate their accounting systems with my software. This is a potential high-growth area with the increasing popularity of small businesses and the internet.

If the software is efficient, I would be spreading it worldwide through online marketing.

Programming skills and strong knowledge of accounting are required. I would need to consult various accounting professionals and businesses when creating this software to get accurate results. Money would be required to hire a team of software developers or to outsource the work. 

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Marketing the software is probably the biggest task, as it would be difficult to persuade businesses to shift from their existing accounting system to new software. Marketing costs may be substantial, and it will be a while before the business makes a substantial profit.

8. Financial coaching and education for individuals

Financial coaching and education involves teaching people how to manage their finances in the form of advice and support, and they will pay you.

This type of support could be performed in a one-to-one coaching arrangement, with a view to empowering the individual to look after their own finances. 

Alternatively, it may involve the development and delivery of financial education packages to groups, with a view to improving the financial literacy of a specific group of people.

Business start-up requirements are minimal. You will have a passion for teaching, and helping others is essential, but beyond that, the business can be started with minimal capital outlay.

Offering education to groups may involve forming partnerships with other community organizations and can often lead to further opportunities. An example might be the delivery of a set of classes on managing investment and superannuation for a local investment club.

9. Accounting blogger and writer

Accountants can make extra income by writing for their personal blogs or writing for clients through freelance websites like Fiverr and Upwork. An accounting blog is a medium to write about company financial records, concerns, accounting, and tax issues and answer taxpayers’ and even other accountants’ questions.

Do you know what’s attractive about having an accounting blog? Well, you can either tie it to an existing accounting firm or you can start it from scratch and maybe turn it into a successful business all on its own.

To start an accounting blog, the only equipment needed is a computer and a web connection. Web hosting is available at a very low price (less than $3 per month), and the blogging application WordPress can be installed for free.

Any accountant looking for a transition into self-employment will be aware of the web’s wealth of online business ideas. Blogging on accounting topics is already one online business idea in its own right, but others include an accounting information product, a membership site, a coaching service, or a niche website hoping to obtain advertisement or affiliate revenue in the financial vertical.

All of these have the attractiveness of being started small on a self-employed basis, with efforts occurring outside typical working hours. It’s like testing out a business idea without having to quit your day job right away.

Conclusion: Best Business Ideas for Accountants and Auditors

There are many business ideas for accountants and auditors. They can choose and create a business based on their abilities and skills. It’s not necessary for them to work under someone else; they can also be entrepreneurs.

It’s totally possible for accountants and auditors to start their own successful businesses and offer jobs to other people.

The primary step to implement these business ideas for accountants and auditors is to not be too dependent on their secure jobs right now. They should have confidence in themselves and the spirit to improve the quality of their lives.

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