FAQ’s

What kind of clients do you work with?
If this describes you, we’d probably work well together:

  • You are really good at what you do, but you are less comfortable with the financial aspect of your business.
  • You might have a bookkeeper and a CPA, but no one is giving you a big picture view of how your business decisions and the numbers are working together.
  • Your business is home grown and you want to keep it that way.  You aren’t seeking equity investors.
  • Your annual revenue is probably less than $10 million.
  • You have made the leap from indie business owner to having contractors and employees.
  • You love making a whopping profit, but that’s not the only reason you are in business.
  • You care about the experience of your employees and giving them something to brag about when they talk to their friends.
  • You want to be known for top notch business practices and excellent customer service.
  • You sometimes get a bit overwhelmed or even bored by number crunching.
  • You want an advisor who can translate your business data in a way that makes sense and is useful.

How are you different from a CPA?
CPA’s focus on keeping you square with the IRS (i.e. keeping the “tax man” off your back!).  The IRS primarily cares about one number at the end of your fiscal year.  But as a business owner, there is so much more insight to glean from your accounting information than a single number!

We maintain a bird’s eye view of your accounting (and other aspects of your business) to help you manage your money and make better decisions.  By taking a more holistic approach to viewing your financial statements, we can help you see patterns in your business and guide you in how to improve on those patterns.  For instance, we’ll notice how your business fluctuates throughout the year and will be able to tell you when it’s the best time to hire more help based on a 360 degree view of your business.

How are you different from a business consultant?
A lot of business consultants focus on three things: your bottom line, your competition and their own formula for success.

When you work with us, we keep your bottom line and your competitors in mind, but we are also concerned with your goals as a business owner, what you personally value, and the culture of your business.  We do not have a pre-existing plan that is implement with every client, instead we listen to you and find out where you want to take your business and support your goals.

How are you different from staffing and recruiting agencies? We’re focused on finding the right accounting solutions for small businesses.  We aren’t interested in sending you as many resumes as we can dig up.  We want to find the best fit for your unique situation.  Whether you choose to utilize our team, have us recruit for your specific role, or let us ensure that your candidates have the right skills for the job you need them to do, we’ll do our best to make sure you have the right person to provide you with the numbers to manage your business.

Do you do taxes?
No, we are not licensed to prepare taxes.  We have a reasonable understanding of taxes, but we prefer to lean on CPA’s who keep up with the everchanging landscape.  We focus on how to use your financials to run your business well; Uncle Sam’s rules have little to do with that!

Do you do bookkeeping?
Yes, we have small staff of bookkeepers who are able to assist designers, developers and other creative services businesses.  We aren’t a “bookkeeping firm” and we prefer to find the right solution for your business.  We *can* provide bookkkeeping if you need it, but it’s not our goal to sell bookkeeping services to you.  We can help you recruit a bookkeeper for you to hire directly, we can work with the bookkeeper you already have in place, or we can contract a bookkeeper to you.  The choice is yours; let’s work together to find the solution that’s best for your business.

Do you come to our office?
Yes.  Financial review and consulting sessions can be done at your office or via a web meeting.  If you’re in the Portland area, we would love to meet personally but sometimes it makes sense to work remotely.  Either way is fine.  Analysis and number crunching is usually done remotely.  Bookkeeping may be done on-site or remotely…we prefer remote because it’s more efficient and our tech loving clients usually prefer to utilize technologies that keep the serious day to day number crunching away from the creative vibe.  The interview process of recruiting can happen at your office, or offsite…whichever you prefer.

Do you work with clients outside of the Portland Metro area?
Yes, we work with clients around the country.  We do like to meet in person, if possible, but today’s technology will allow us to work via the internet and by phone easily and seamlessly.  If you live outside of my local area, let’s talk by phone and see how we might collaborate on your business.

What are your rates?
I like to work on a fixed fee basis where possible.  This helps you budget and keeps us both focused on results.  Packages and package rates are customized for each business.  My rates are typically more than a bookkeeper and less than a CPA.  Bookkeepers are usually billed hourly.

If we hire you can we fire our CPA?
You *can* if you want to, but keep in mind we don’t do taxes and you’ll still need a CPA.

What software do you use?
Most of my clients use QuickBooks (mac or windows), MYOB Accountedge, or QuickBooks Online.  I support these software packages, but don’t worry if you’re using something else.  Accounting is accounting, regardless of your software choice.

How can we get started?
When you are ready to get started you can contact me by phone (503-575-1925) or Email.