Starting a Forensic Accounting Firm Successfully
Some of the services that are on high demand in the accounting industry are fraud investigation and forensic accounting. 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. Usually, for you to build a stable forensic accounting practice, it will take time. It takes time to stabilize because there are different clients with different needs. To become a real competitor in the area of fraud detection, you must look at the strengths that your firm has and focus on these. 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. Bribery, corporate embezzlement, financial statement fraud and insurance fraud are some of the issues taken care of under fraud investigation. On the other hand, you will need litigation services for bankruptcy consultation, business insurance claims, contract disputes and any shareholder divorces. Clients will normally fall into different industries, and this is the easiest way to make sure that the cases are resolved as quickly as possible. For you to develop the forensic practice, you will have to select the cases carefully. As a small or midsized firm, it might not be possible for you to take each of the engagements on a high level. It is therefore critical that a smaller practice define the expertise and their specific services.
It is common to find that the larger firms will be associated with higher experience in most of the matters. It is possible though for the small firm to make a niche they are specialized in so that they can compete favorably. If you are in a position to give services that are of high quality on a consistent basis, you will build a solid reputation for the company. 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 AIPCA’s statement on standards for consulting services are the ones to guide all the forensic accounting engagements. The other basic standards that should be adhered to, include competence, due professional care, planning and supervision. It is important that independence is observed so that credibility is not impaired. You will develop a standard investigation process if you are able to put administrative tools to manage the engagements. The process will now be used for all the future engagements. Consistently getting good results will get you more clients.