Home Accountants Top 10 Accounting Firms Uk

Business is booming.

You’ve got money coming in faster than you can manage.

Fantastic!

Maybe you’re now thinking about growing the business?

Even better!

But with more money coming in, there’s more money to think about.

Unfortunately you can’t just jump straight to the good stuff.

It’s time to think about taxes, payroll and expenses...

Preparing, sending and sorting out invoices...

Sounds stressful, right?

I’m sure you’ve got things you’d rather be doing.

Wouldn’t it be great if there was someone to sort it all out for you?

Still worrying about your money management?

Well, I have some good news!

An accountant can sort out all your money worries.

Take one of my clients:

Last year, they called me with some good news...

They’d just started making serious profit in a start-up tech company.

Amazing!

To expand the business they wanted to hire more staff, but they were spending their nights pouring over the books working out how to manage their expenses.

So, guess what I did?

I suggested that they contacted an accounting firm who specialised in their industry for help and advice on how to get where they wanted to go.

Within months, they had increased their profit by 37%.

If this sounds like what you want to achieve, perfect!

You’ve come to the right place.

I’ve put together this article with everything you need to know to find the top accounting firm for your business.

And I’ve even gathered together the top 10 accounting firms in the UK, and shown which ones suit each business type best so you can choose the best one for you.

Chapter 1

What Are Accountants And What Do They Do?

You’re busy running a business.

Why giving yourself one more thing to worry about?

Take another one of my clients from 3 years ago:

They left a hectic graphic design agency to go independent.

This was a great career move for them.

But they had no idea how to take charge of their taxes.

(Neither do I!)

This could have led to some real financial trouble.

Entered the accountant.

Your accountant gets your problems solved!

They’re clearly a vital part of the business!

An accountant can manage your money and help you make the best financial decisions.

Here’s a helpful list of some things an accountant can do for your business:

Give financial advice

Remember my client?

They were an independent graphic designer .

They knew all about the best computer software but nothing about the latest tax laws.

But guess who did?

The accountant made sure my client was paying the right tax, helping them to avoid penalties.

Manage your budgets

For my client, it was important to be able to have a large office space.

Before getting an accountant, it was difficult to see how this would fit into the limited budget.

But by redistributing the budget, they can now afford one.

Conduct an independent check of your financial position

With so much profit being made, my client wanted more staff.

Understandable.

An accountant was able to track the incomings, outgoings and how the money was moving through the company.

They determined how many more staff could be hired and how much they could be paid.

Detect and prevent fraud

A year into the business, the accountant noticed something was wrong with the expenses.

My client’s credit card had been cloned and he was being charged for things he hadn’t bought.

Without the accountant’s sharp eye, this might not have been noticed for months!

Prepare financial statements

My client wanted to launch their product to the wider market. For this, they needed an investor.

The accountant prepared a financial statement, showing the company’s performance and cash flows.

They were able to get an investor, thanks to a clear outline of how the company was making money.

Amber Williams

Amber Williams
Accounting expert

Did You Know?

Accountants play a very special role in the American movie business.

(And no, it’s not just all the money the actors make.)

Certified Public Accountants count the ballots at the Oscars.

Sounds great, right?

For my client, an accountant took a huge weight off.

My client was able to focus on the parts of the business that they loved, rather than focusing on how the company was making money.

Thankfully, an accountant helped him stay on top of your finances and stay organised.

My client didn’t have to worry anymore.

It might have been a slice out of the budget, but it was SO worth it .

So, should you get one?

(‘Course you should!)

That’s why I’ve decided to make things that much easier.

I’ve brought together the Top 10 Accounting Firms and shown you which one will suit your business.

Chapter 2

What Are The Types of Accounting Firm?

Accounting is complex enough.

And now you find that there are different types?!

It’s OK, don’t panic.

Accounting firms are used by so many businesses that they have to specialise in one area.

From filing tax returns to risk management, each firm will specialise in a different area of accounting.

So, it’s important to know the difference.

Lucky for you,

I’ve made a handy list breaking down the four main types of accounting firms:

Public Accounting

Preparing financial statements:

This means how much money the company is making, incomings and outgoings.

Very useful to track future profits!

Auditing the financial statements given by other accountants:

This is done to make sure that the statements are fair and importantly, that they’re correct!

Preparing tax returns:

A tax return is a government form that must be filled out to report on income.

Basically, to make sure that you’re paying all the right tax for your situation.

I had a client who was very careful with their finances and wanted to make sure that their statements were correct.

I pointed them towards their local Certified Public Accountant who was more than happy to help.

Tax Accounting

Tax return preparation:

This means gathering all the evidence like pay-slips, investment income statements and other financial documents.

Hard work, but someone’s gotta do it!

Tax planning:

If you’re looking to grow your business, maybe even internationally, you’re going to have to do some serious tax planning.

This helps to minimise the amount of income tax you will pay.

My client was looking to move their business global.

Such an exciting opportunity!

They knew their tax situation was going to change, so they hired an accountant to get on top of it.

Forensic Accounting

Litigation:

If your company has taken a hit in a legal dispute,

a Forensic Accountant can work out the damage and fix disputes so they don’t have to hit the courtroom.

Investigation:

Nobody wants to learn that they’ve had money taken from then.

But it’s better to know sooner rather than later.

By hiring a Forensic Accountant you can work out if anything from fraud to embezzlement has taken place.

One of my clients owns a chain of shops,

they couldn’t work out why the expenses weren’t adding up.

I pointed them towards a Forensic Accountant, who found someone had been stealing from the company.

Bookkeeping

Recording and paying invoices:

This can be one of the hardest tasks when you are managing a business.

You want everyone to be paid on time,

so why not hire someone to make sure that happens?

Billing for goods or services sold:

It works the other way too!

You need to get paid so sending out a timely invoice is so important.

A bookkeeper will be able to keep track of what bills are going in and out so you don’t have to.

One client was setting up a small business with a couple of employees.

They wanted someone to manage payroll and provide financial reports,

so I pointed them towards a bookkeeper.

They did it all for them!

Read More: Accountants

Wow, that’s a lot to think about.

Making a decision for your business is hard enough.

And it gets so much tougher when it comes to something as important as accounting.

To get the most from your money, you need to get it right.

Here’s the good news:

How ever you’re looking to manage your money,

there’s a type of accounting for you.

Amber Williams

Amber Williams
Accounting expert

Did You Know?

It seems like every day has a day, know what I mean?

International Accountant’s Day is on 10 November.

Celebrate the special accountant in your life!

Chapter 3

The Top 10 Accounting Firms in the UK

Let’s recap:

You know that you need an accounting firm to revolutionise your business.

And you’ve figured what type of accounting firm will work best for you.

All you’ve got to do now is find the perfect firm for you!

I’ve dealt with enough clients to know finding the best accounting firm matters.

So, I’ve decided to make things super simple.

I’m going to tell you all about the top firms in the UK for your business.

Whatever the size and shape of your money, there is a firm out there for you.

Let’s have a look!

Amber Williams

Amber Williams
Accounting expert

Did You Know?

While public and private entities in the United States normally uses Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, other countries tend to use International Financial Reporting Standards.

Our Top-rated Firms For Big Businesses:

You’ve probably heard of these four big firms.

If you’re a big business or looking to grow, it’s worth having a look at these.

Why are they called the Big Four?

Because they’re the four most famous accounting firms.

Simple.

So, why are they so special?

10. Deloitte

This is a big one.

It’s the oldest of the four and was founded in 1845.

(Back when money was made of paper rather than plastic.)

But since then they’ve dived into the digital age

Deloitte Digital is a branch of the company investing in emerging technologies.

Currently, they’re focusing on consultancy and looking for bigger projects.

With a top world spot, this one is unlikely to be within budget...

But they can possibly give you tremendous help in audit and assurance, tax, mergers, and acquisitions.

Unique Feature

Online Review

Positives

Negatives

Deloitte has its headquarters in New York.

The only one of the Big Four which operates across the pond.

4.4 stars

(gartner.com)

'Flexibility based on our priorities and constraints.'

'Fit very well onto our team.'

'A lack of cloud implementation experience.'

9. PwC UK

This is the multi-billion-dollar underdog.

PwC - aka PricewaterhouseCoopers - has been delivering professional services since 1998.

And lucky for you, they’ve stayed close to home!

The headquarters are in London and employ 276,000 people around the world.

That’s pretty much a small city...

And guess what?

They work with 429 of the Fortune 500 companies!

Unique Feature

Online Review

Positives

Negatives

PwC works with 20+ different industries so you’re sure to find an expert in yours.

4.6 stars

(featuredcustomers.com)

'The playbook was like an open canvas for adding additional processes and tools.'

'Highly sustainable solutions.'

'Poorly organized and under-staffed, an audit that should take a week takes a month.'

8. EY

EY - otherwise known as Ernst & Young - are the millennials of the ‘Big Four’.

Founded in 1989, they count Apple, Amazon, and Google as clients.

Wow.

And they’re still climbing their way up to the top!

The firm now employs 261,559 people around the world, providing assurance, tax, consulting and advisory services to companies.

Unique Feature

Online Review

Positives

Negatives

Ranked the 9th largest privately owned organization in the U.S. in 2017.

4.6

(gartner.com)

'They’re not afraid to push back where needed and change direction when something is not working.'

'They can accommodate tremendous scale and complexity.'

Despite the less-than-perfect score, nobody had anything bad to say about this company.

7. KPMG LLP

KPMG is Peat Marwick International, merged with Klynveld Main Goerdeler.

Now say that twice as fast!

It’s the smallest of the four with 207,000 employees.

Then again, it’s not really small at all, is it?

Their headquarters are in Amstelveen in the Netherlands.

They work with anyone from start-ups to major companies, so all bases are covered.

What don’t they specialise in?

Tax, audition, pensions and legal services are the top of the list, though.

Unique Feature

Online Review

Positives

Negatives

They specialise in auditing for some of the world’s biggest banks and oil companies.

3.2

(trustpilot.com)

'Knowledge of EIS and other niche tax schemes was far superior.'

'Pretty good start then hyper slow annual accounts, late payroll.'

'Late with paperwork and filings.'

Amber Williams

Amber Williams
Accounting expert

Did You Know?

Did you know that the FBI employs accountants?

2,000 of them to be exact.

Our Top-rated Firms For Small And Medium-Sized Businesses:

6. Duncan & Toplis

Duncan & Toplis is set on making tax digital.

From 2020 you’ll have to keep your business records digitally.

So why not start now?

This is a family-run business with over 400 employees.

What a big family!

If you’re looking for a personal accountant,

meet with them face-to-face (for free!) to discuss your startup or growing business!

These guys specialise in everything from wealth management to service provision!

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

Duncan & Toplis is a member of Kreston International so you get access to international markets .

4.0

(google.com)

'Always fast to respond to queries and our end of year accounts are turned around very efficiently.'

'They're easy to approach and will pull the stops out to get the job done.'

Despite the less-than-perfect score, nobody had anything bad to say about this company.

5. Chaddesley Sanford

This one might not be in the big leagues, but they’re going places.

Got a start-up? This is the firm for you.

Work in construction? Look no further.

Restaurants? Yep!

Retail? Definitely.

What about the creative industry? Absolutely!

There’s not a lot these guys aren’t doing.

They’re a small team so the attention is on you.

And who doesn’t want that?

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

Three office sites - London, Surrey, and Essex - means this firm is only a short ride away.

4.7

(featuredcustomers.com)

'Our business partners have always got access to the numbers.'

'Outstanding accounting and advisory services.'

Despite the less-than-perfect score, nobody had anything bad to say about this company.

4. Forrest Brown

Forrest Brown is all about R&D tax credit consultancy.

(R&D tax credits are given by the government to reward innovative new ideas.)

So if you’re a growing business and looking to hire more people,

it might be worth giving Forrest Brown a call.

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

They’re the best in the business for R&D tax consultancy.

So if you’re looking for advice on this profitable (and very niche) type of accounting, you know where to go!

4.7

(google.com)

' Extremely thorough, efficient and supportive of our needs .'

'Their structured approach (of R&D) made the process easy to understand.'

'When it comes to signing off your tax return, you’ll receive an email everyday reminding you. Very annoying.'

3. Gorilla Accountants

They might not be raking in billions of dollars a year…

But they’re focused on what matters.

For contractors, freelancers, and locums, these guys make accounting simple.

They’ll even help you switch from another accountant!

No fuss, no hidden fees.

And if you’re in the office, you might just bump into one of their influential clients.

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

With full use of software FreeAgent, this is a particularly good one for freelancers.

Snap and send an invoice, keep track of your finances on the go - wherever you go!

4.9

(trustpilot.com)

'If you’re a complete beginner there is a fair amount to get your head around, but they make it very easy.'

'Very quick to answer and happy to help.'

'If you have more complex needs like working with foreign companies, you might find things lacking.'

2. Mazuma

Searching for a firm that’s a bit more budget-friendly?

Hiring an accountant doesn’t need to break the bank.

Or even dent the balance.

For £28 + VAT per month, you can be free of tax, accounts and even payroll.

Mazuma delivers it all with the sending of an email or a purple envelope.

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

Along with a monthly payment, Mazuma offers one-off packages to sort out all the fluffy stuff.

4.9

(reviews.io)

'The advice and response time is amazing.'

'Taxes are never fun, the guys at Mazuma have made sure I haven’t had to stress about it for a decade.'

“When it comes to signing off your tax return, you’ll receive an email everyday reminding you. Very annoying.”

Our Top-rated All-rounder:

1. Emerald Accountancy

There are no hidden fees at Emerald.

And there’re no clocks starting as soon as they hear the phone ring, either!

Pop over, swing by and call them up without worrying about an extra bill.

(I should say that all the fees are fixed before this sounds too good to be true)

This firm operates in leafy Derbyshire.

So a great choice if you’re based up north.

And they’re already up to speed with cloud accounting and digital tax.

No more paperwork clogging up your home.

What could be better?

Unique Feature

Customer Review

Positives

Negatives

Not sure if this is the one for you?

Emerald offers a free consultation, so you can get to know them and they can get to know your business.

5.0

(google reviews)

'A 10/10 service.'

'Professional, friendly and on the ball.'

'The team are always helpful and fast to respond to queries.'

For our #1 firm, there are no negative reviews!

Only glowing ones!

Get a new accountant now!

Conclusion

By now you know that an accountant will shape up your finances and help your business grow.

I’ve even rounded up the best in the business!

Now it’s over to you:

What financial task are you excited to ditch?

What are your priorities in hiring an accounting firm?