Question: Who Does Your Business Taxes

I know a few business owners who do their own taxes, and many more who pay someone to fill out their corporate returns each year. Given that the cost of corporate accounting can be significant, some owners have shied away from that route for as long as they can, while others quickly push their books over the accountants without a second thought.

Which group do you fall into, and why?

Calculating Salary

As noted in last week’s questions, assessing salary can be a challenging endeavor, especially if there are limited statistics available for the industry and region. However, there are some basic rules of thumb that can assist in running the calculation.

The first is to determine how much the position is worth to you, the employer. If by hiring someone to perform a particular role, you can generate $100,000 in revenue, then that position is worth some fraction of that. Once you factor in your own overhead, be it rent, taxes, collections, legal, and other aspects of your business which do not directly bring in revenue, this number usually works out to about a factor of 3.

Second, you need to look at the options your candidates have, and what types of positions they might otherwise be interested in. If you’re hiring a computer programmer, for example, but want him to work as a business analyst in addition to programming, you need to consider the salary he might be able to get as just a computer programmer. That number would then be used to determine the minimum salary level – since you require additional skills over comparable jobs.

Last, you need to look at what you can afford. If you cannot afford to pay a fair salary, then either you need to reduce the list of qualifications, or reduce the seniority such that the position becomes affordable. It will not help your business to offer a position at $75,000 per year when in reality you can only afford to pay $60,000. While you may scrimp to make the position work, you will end up doing your business more harm than good when you discover that you hired over your needs.