When looking for a new fee accountant, it’s important to gather all necessary information from each prospective partner in order to select the company that best fits your needs. That all starts with drafting a request for proposal (RFP) that will highlight your needs and concerns that should be addressed in the completed RFP. A well composed RFP will lead to better proposals – giving you the ability to choose the partner that will best meet your needs.
First your RFP should layout the details and mandate of your request. This includes who is submitting the request, what services are required, the proposal due date, where the proposal should be sent, and in what format. Also list all of the information that will be required in the proposal. A contact person can be listed in this section for any questions or follow ups.
The next section should outline the purpose or scope of work to be completed. Include information about the business, date of fiscal year end and all accounting functions required. That could include:
- reviewing audits and preparing for future audits
- completing general ledgers and trial balances
- completing reports
- closing fiscal year end
- training finance staff
- completing daily, monthly, and annual accounting services
Following the scope of work should be the proposal submission requirements. Include a list of requirements that each company completing the RFP must submit. This could include:
- permit or business registration
- samples of financial reports
- list of tasks to be completed by accounting firm
- proof of knowledge of specific accounting software or government programs
- information on employees or the accounting firm in general
- proof of liability insurance
- rates for onsite and remote services along with travel and per diem information
- invoicing information
It is important to determine selection criteria that outlines the information requested and assigns a point value. Not only will this help accounting firms to understand what is most important to you, it will also give you a system to determine which firm best meets your needs.
Example of a point system:
|Demonstrated experience and knowledge in all aspects of (your specific industry) and with (your accounting software)||35|
|The methodology or approach the accountant will employ to perform the services||10|
|The accountant’s capability and ability to manage and complete services within specified timelines||10|
|The accountants proposed fee or monthly cost for completion of the related fee accounting services||20|
|Demonstrated experience of the services with other similar companies||10|
Finally, include a signature and authorization page with the name of the firm, signature of official printed and signed, title, and date.
While RFPs can vary depending on the nature of the business requesting fee accounting services, this is a general overview of what every RFP should include. This list isn’t all-inclusive but highlights the most common items seen on fee accounting RFPs.
Using this information, you can easily get started on your fee accounting RFP. When it’s ready, feel free to send it to 360 Virtual Accounting. Our accounting and finance experts can help with any fee accounting project and would love the opportunity to find out if we would be a good partner for your company. Read more about our accounting services here.