Back to Resources

Do I Have Enough Public Accounting Experience to Advise Clients as a Freelancer?

By bvalleydev

  • March 21, 2017
  • 2 min. read

We regularly meet with CPAs considering taking the leap from salaried employee to self-employed consultant, and there’s one concern that Senior Associates and Managers in public accounting always bring up.

Do I really have enough experience to go out on my own?

If you have achieved the promotion to Senior Associate at a national firm, you are likely prepared to be an independent consultant.

With that said, we certainly appreciate their concern. You’re worried you’ll begin working on a client and be unable to deliver.

But fortunately, these doubts will quickly fade within the first couple weeks of an initial project.

There are a few reasons you are ready to begin freelancing through Beech Valley earlier in your career than you would probably expect.

1.) We’re not going to set you up on a project that you’re not qualified for.
If a project requires a consultant with 15+ years of experience, we’re not going to place a Senior Associate into that role and hope for the best.

Many Beech Valley freelancers have worked on complex projects within large organizations, and we’ve yet to have a project fail due to a consultant lacking the necessary experience.

2.) You’ll be working within a team, not on an island.
Similar to working within a public accounting engagement team, you’ll be working within a team of highly qualified finance professionals. On some projects, your team members will be other consultants. On others, they will be employees at your client.

Either way, you’ll always be surrounded by seasoned professionals who will work with you to accomplish your objectives.

3.) Public accounting experience has prepared you to be adaptable.
How many times have you felt in over your head in public accounting?

Maybe your superior abruptly left right before busy season or got shifted onto another engagement, and suddenly everyone expected you to step up. You initially stressed about your situation and wondered how the work would get done. But ultimately, you delivered.

You’ve been conditioned to tackle most any accounting issue thrown at you, and that kind of experience transfers over extremely well to independent consulting.

4.) Beech Valley has the resources you need to succeed.
We’ve spent several years building up a network of diverse accounting professionals that can be called upon: technical accounting gurus, tax wizards, transactions experts, and so on. Should you have concerns, just let us know.

If it’s something we can’t help you accomplish on our own, we work with our clients to bring on the additional expertise required.

Is the only thing holding you back the perception that you aren’t experienced enough to succeed?
Assuming you’ve experienced success at a national firm at the Senior Associate level, your experience is more than adequate. Our freelancers have taken on a variety of projects, and one of them has yet to report a bad experience.

We’re confident we will maintain this track record.

Looking for a more flexible career?

Apply to Beech Valley's A-List