Cost Driver For Estimates
Since the main cost driver for our project is dollars for time, we need an idea of how many hours we will spend on the engagement, and that is where all that probing of your business’s financial data will come in useful.
To have an idea of how much time will be required to take the engagement from start to finish, we will be mainly looking at the following variables:
1) Number of transactions that need to be processed
2) Complexity of the transactions
3) How many adjustments may be warranted for the year close
4) The types of tax rules that may come into play, some tax rules may greatly complicate the engagement
A business with few assets consisting of mainly office furniture will have much fewer depreciation calculations than a company with many assets spanning state lines; hence the bookkeeping would need less sorting and then fewer adjustments for tax purposes.
5) Do the client’s books and records reconcile to the prior tax filings?
Books and records become the tax filings, and as such, the books need to reconcile to the tax return for the return itself to balance.
There are situations where the books and records do not reconcile to the tax return, which may be for some of the following reasons:
- There was a disconnect between the bookkeeper and the prior tax accountant, and the year-end entries made for the tax filings were not implemented into the live accounting files after the return was completed. This situation frequently happens when the tax professional is not the same individual that prepared the bookkeeping.
- The QuickBooks file was not “locked” with a password protection feature to ensure that no entries accidentally land into the year that was already filed.