Many new business owners are so excited to get their doors open and gain clients, offer the best customer service and start making money their accounting needs are often last on the list. Behind your day-to-day operations lies one of the most important elements of your business-your financial books.A small business accounting consultant can help not only new entrepreneurs but also those not experienced or educated in the accounting cycle but well versed in entrepreneurship. Some of the services an accounting consultant firm can offer include:Initial Set Up of Accounting SoftwareThese professionals can help set up your accounting software including a chart of accounts dedicated specifically to your business. A consultant can set up any schedules, journals and train your staff on utilizing the system accurately such as how to make journal entries and produce financial reports.Having an accurate set of books is a necessary must! While many accounting software programs advertise their ease of use, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can make a mess of a your financial books quickly.Turning to someone with the expertise to set up and review your software or even help you choose the correct software is just one way an accounting consultant can be a lifesaver.Tax ReturnsIf you’re lost on business tax Internal Revenue Service (IRS) forms 1065 or 1120S, find accountants who can help you via the consulting route. You can utilize their professional expertise to complete the entire tax return or work with them to understand how the process is completed.These consultants utilize source documents they have help you set up in your accounting system such as income and expense statements, balance sheets, the trial balance and required schedules such as accounts payable and receivables. They also help you determine your stock basis at year beginning and end, owner’s equity and retained earnings. Finally, if you need to make year-end adjusting journal entries, they can walk you through this process as well. A clean set of books is needed each year for every business.Financial Advice and GuidanceThere may be times when you will need an accountant consultant to help explain your financials to possible investors via an audit. Audited financials are often the most trusted and will entice those looking to invest.A consultant can also provide your bank requested financials on a monthly or annual basis. If your business is a franchise and requires monthly and annual accounting to the franchisor, a consultant can help in this area as well.When it comes to investing in buildings or equipment, your consultant can guide you on whether the investments are smart ones. For all your depreciable assets, they ensure the depreciation method you are utilizing is legal in the eyes of the IRS.If you are audited by the IRS, accounting professionals can ease the process, especially if they are familiar with your software, source documents and tax returns. This alone is one reason to hire an accounting professional to ensure they are there when you need them.A Necessary ExpenseUnless you’re a CPA, you will need to find accountants to help you throughout the year and at tax time. Because consulting is become popular in today’s economy, seek out an accountant’s directory by browsing the many providers listed on B2B online directories.Because you need your financial records to be 100 percent accurate, this business expense is prudent and wise. Search for a small business accounting professional or post a request for help on an online business marketplace before you find your books are a mess.