Starting a Forensic Accounting Firm Successfully
The two most sought after services in the accounting sector include forensic account and fraud investigation. Most companies are now needing fraud detection services and most experts agree that there is a need for the services now more than ever. This is creating opportunities in the small and midsized firms that are looking to either start or even expand. It will take time for the forensic accounting practice to stabilize and you will need to be patient. It takes time to stabilize because there are different clients with different needs. The firm has specific strengths and you must focus on these for you to become a worthy competitor in the sector. Your brand has to be associated with quality if your clients are to trust you.
Forensic services is split into two subsets including litigation support services and fraud investigation. You need to have a fraud investigation service if you have issues in relation to bribery, insurance fraud, financial statement fraud and corporate embezzlement. Litigation support services include contract disputes, business insurance claims, bankruptcy consultation and shareholder divorces. The clients are divided into the specific industries which determine how the matters are going to be resolved. The forensic practice will grow through choosing the right cases carefully. Performing at a high level for each of the engagements will not be possible for the firm especially if it is small. There are areas that the firm has expertise in and here is where the firm needs to focus on.
There is the element of huge depth and breadth of experience that is normally associated with the larger firms. However, the smaller firms can be able to compete effectively by developing niches of specialization. The quality of services that you provide should be able to bring in business and gradually build a reputation. It is an advantage for you to walk into an engagement with a team led by someone that has solid experience. The reason there has to be significant experience is because investigations are processes that are complex and if the client is to be at an advantage, then you have to involve serious expertise.
The guidelines that are supposed to spearhead the forensic accounting engagements are the standards for consulting services as stipulated in the AIPCA’s statement. The other basic standards that should be adhered to, include competence, due professional care, planning and supervision. Independence is a key factor to ensure that there is credibility. You will develop a standard investigation process if you are able to put administrative tools to manage the engagements. All the future engagements will use the standardized procedure developed. You will be able to get more clients if you are able to give positive results consistently.