22 Lessons Learned: Accountants

Tips to Successfully Start a Forensic Accounting Firm

Forensic accounting and fraud investigation are the two most sought for services in the accounting sector. Experts agree that the need for fraud detection services is growing at a fast rate. If you are a midsized or small company, you have an opportunity in this industry to start or expand. Usually, for you to build a stable forensic accounting practice, it will take time. The reason for this is that the services as well as the clients are unique. 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. If you are giving the right kind of services, the clients are going to trust your brand more especially if you are providing quality.

Forensic services is split into two subsets including litigation support services and fraud investigation. The fraud investigation consists of financial statement fraud, corporate embezzlement, insurance fraud and bribery. Litigation support services include contract disputes, business insurance claims, bankruptcy consultation and shareholder divorces. So that matters are resolved quickly and efficiently, clients are usually divided into specific industries. 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.

There is the element of huge depth and breadth of experience that is normally associated with the larger firms. It is possible though for the small firm to make a niche they are specialized in so that they can compete favorably. The quality of services that you provide should be able to bring in business and gradually build a reputation. An expert that has solid experience in the issue at hand is the best person to lead the engagement for the best results. 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.

Forensic accounting engagements have to be performed in accordance with the AIPCA’s statement on standards for consulting services. You should forget that all the other standards considered basic also apply for example planning, supervision, professional care and competence. It is important that independence is observed so that credibility is not impaired. If you put administrative tools to manage engagements, you will develop a standard investigation. The process will now be used for all the future engagements. You will be able to get more clients if you are able to give positive results consistently.