I am often asked how I can work with people in different states and I really don’t understand the question. I work with clients around the United States and often they are in other countries. In person meetings are no longer necessary to having a great relationship with your clients. On the other hand face-to face meetings are still often necessary. That is why it is so important to have technology work for you – I use Skype so I can see my clients. I actually like it better than using the phone because even if a client lives close by the phone is so impersonal, I can see if they understand me or if I have just confused them when using Skype but that is not possible on the phone. I also like that text messages are possible on Skype and if the answer requires more details I can give them a quick call.
I find the reason most people don’t like to work with a CPA remotely is because they want to hand you all the information personally – I understand this because I really don’t like having personal paperwork that has identification information going through the mail. That is why I use a secure portal that has the same encryptions technology as banks use. When I receive a client’s information either in person or in the mail the first thing I have to do is scan it and then make sure I have everything. If they have uploaded the information to my secure server it makes the process much faster and I can get your taxes or questions to you much quicker.
Working with your CPA or accountant remotely is no different than hiring a local CPA with the exception that I am not constrained by business hours or location. Hire the person who you feel knows your business and can be an advocate for your business and finances, location should not be a deciding factor. To have the freedom you want in your business you must also have a CPA who understands what that freedom means to you. Choose carefully.