Ask the expert: The value of tax advisory services

Featuring Catherine Tindall, CPA, founder of Dominion Enterprise Services

Welcome to another Intuit® Accountants’ article in an ongoing series about accounting professionals who work in tax advisory services.

Q Tell us about your tax advisory practice.

A Dominion Enterprise Services is a firm that focuses exclusively on tax planning and specialty tax credit work.

Q Why did you decide to lead with tax advisory rather than traditional compliance?

A I wanted to show my clients my value as their advisor and be seen as a partner in their business. Tax advisory allows me to really move the needle forward and have a high impact on their tax prep and planning.

Q What are some benefits of tax advisory?

A Because we keep our partner-to-client ratio small, clients enjoy better service and a more personal relationship, while also saving a lot more money on taxes. Clients are willing to pay more for this higher value and know that there are no surprises in this process.

Q What are some of your challenges?

A The biggest challenge is ensuring you have the technical acumen to really know the full ramifications of different planning techniques. Another challenge is the fear of reducing your client list to pursue this higher-value work. Fear of change and jumping into something new can be scary.

Q Since leading with tax advisory instead of compliance, how has your lifestyle changed?

A It’s no longer about the amount of time spent; it’s the value we create. Clients feel more respected and grateful, and for us, the overall work burden is much lower.

Q What would you say to pros who have not yet embraced tax advisory?

A Look at your quality of life and personal goals. Coaching programs and working with entrepreneurial-minded CPAs pushed me in this direction. Finding a network of support is helpful for your headspace and can help you get started. Between specialty tax credit work and advisory, we’ll never go back to the old way of running a practice.

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The Intuit® Tax Council published The Path to Advisory, a comprehensive guide for firms that want to add advisory services to their practice or improve the services they already offer. For more information, visit the Intuit® Tax Pro Center.

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