Exploring the Top Accounting Firms in San Francisco, California

San Francisco is one of the most dynamic, cutting-edge, and innovative business environments in the world right now.

San Francisco and the Bay Area are progressive hubs of technology and development, and this region is home to some of the most visible and successful companies in software, general technology, and social media. San Francisco is also a center of high-end real estate and philanthropy, and it’s where many startups go to flourish.

It’s for all these reasons and many more that ranking accounting firms in San Francisco is so important. These businesses – large and small, from startups to multinational corporations – need to be able to find CPA firms in San Francisco that understand their needs and can help them grow as part of one of the most exciting business communities on the planet.

The following ranking of top San Francisco CPA firms represents some of the very best in the city and in the entire Bay Area. The list comprises companies with a reputation for excellence and extensive experience allowing them to cater to the tax, auditing, financial, and general accounting needs of the many businesses calling the area home, including those businesses that work across not just state but also country borders.

top accountants in san francisco, ca-min

AdvisoryHQ’s List of the Best Accounting Firms in San Francisco, California

This list is sorted alphabetically (click any of the above names to go directly to the detailed review for that accounting firm).

Related (Please Review):

Top 11 Accounting Firms in San Francisco, California

Firm Location
Boas & Boas San Francisco
Burr Pilger Mayer (BPM) San Francisco
DZH Phillips San Francisco
Frank, Rimerman + Co. LLP San Francisco
Harrington Group San Francisco
Hemming Morse, LLP San Francisco
Hood & Strong LLP San Francisco
Lindquist, von Husen & Joyce LLP (LvHJ) San Francisco
Miller Kaplan Arase, LLP (MKA) San Francisco
OUM & Co. San Francisco
Seiler LLP San Francisco

Don't Miss: High Yield Bank Accounts

Methodology for Selecting Accounting Firms in San Francisco, California

When considering the many accounting firms in San Francisco and the surrounding areas, you may question how we create our list of the top 11 firms.

First, we look at a range of widely available public resources to create a list of contenders.

Then our signature “Breakthrough Selection Methodology” is applied to create a list of the top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco, CA.

Click here for a detailed explanation of our methodology: AdvisoryHQ's Methodology for Selecting Top Accounting Firms

Detailed Review – Top Ranking Accounting Firms in San Francisco, CA

 After carefully considering San Francisco accounting firms, we created the following list of the top 11 firms. As you continue reading, you’ll find detailed reviews for each of our picks as well as specifics of some of the factors we used in our decision-making process.

Boas & Boas Review

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Established in 1938, Boas & Boas has built a long reputation as a leading San Francisco CPA firm because of its dedication to respecting clients, a traditional business approach, and its highly experienced professional staff.

Boas & Boas focuses services in the areas of auditing, accounting, tax services, and management advisory services, and the firm’s partners and staff have often been involved with business valuations, working across many industries.

Key Factors That Enabled This Firm to Rank as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

Compiled below are some of the unique elements of Boas & Boas that led to its ranking as one of the top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Staff Experience

As a reputable accountant in San Francisco, Boas & Boas maintains a highly experienced, knowledgeable staff that sets it apart from many other firms. The firm is staffed by three partners, as well as seven additional accounting professionals, with experience ranging from four up to 50 years.

Each of the professionals that make up the team at Boas & Boas offers expertise in a specific area, and yet, at the same time, there is an emphasis on collaboration to ensure each client receives the highest level of service.

Peer Review

Boas & Boas has completed five independent peer reviews assessing its auditing and accounting practices. The review program ensures this accountant in San Francisco upholds the highest quality control standards in its service delivery.

Peer reviews have recently been completed by Benson & Neff, CPAs. Reviewers determined Boas & Boas as having a reliable quality control system and adhering to thorough professional standards, based on a sample of accounting and auditing engagements.

Tax Services

One of the client service areas where Boas & Boas focuses on is tax planning and preparation offered to both individual and business clients. It can provide thorough tax consulting and preparation to everyone from one person to a multi-level partnership.

Its approach to tax services is one defined as being proactive as opposed to reactive. The result is the ability to identify key opportunities during planning, reducing both current and potential future liabilities.

Resources and Research

This CPA in San Francisco places a high level of importance and value on constantly improving its knowledge and expertise while remaining on top of changes in laws and regulations. To ensure it is always up to date, this accountant in San Francisco maintains an accounting and tax library.

Boas & Boas’s computer system is also networked with national computer tax, finance, and accounting research systems as well as  being equipped with both tax and accounting software programs which are used on both a diagnostic and consulting basis.

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Burr Pilger Mayer Review

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Burr Pilger Mayer (BPM) is a modern and cutting-edge San Francisco accountant delivering comprehensive counseling in the realms of finance and business. BPM is one of the largest accounting and consulting firms in California, and it serves the needs of not only emerging and mid-cap businesses but also high-net-worth individuals.

BPM has been one of the top CPA firms in San Francisco for around 30 years, and it works with public companies in Silicon Valley and across the US.

Key Factors That Led Us to Rank This Firm as a Top 11 2016 Accounting Firm in San Francisco

Below are factors weighing into the decision to rank Burr Pilger Mayer as one of the 2016 top accounting firms in San Francisco, CA.


Client goals and objectives are at the forefront of everything this leader among San Francisco CPA firms does. As part of listening to client needs and becoming a true partner, rather than only offering basic, standard accounting solutions, BPM compiled values to guide every aspect of service.

These values include:

  • Community: BPM works to meet its responsibility to the entire community where it lives and works.
  • Respect: This means valuing each other, every client, and the work it does.
  • Integrity: Integrity at BPM means working with fairness, accuracy, honoring commitments, and doing the right thing.
  • Creativity: Initiative, imagination, and original thinking are highly valued in the work done by BPM.
  • Knowledge: The team at BPM maintains a high level of technical expertise to serve the needs of diverse clients.
  • Excellence: The goal is excellence in all that is done at BPM.
  • Teamwork: Value is created through innovation and working together, not just within the business but across the business.
  • Success: Success is defined as achieving profits and growth to make objectives and values possible.

Global Reach

There aren’t geographic boundaries to what’s provided at BPM. It has a Hong Kong office as well as extensive experience doing tax and audit work in Europe. It can support clients in any area of the world thanks to its International Tax team, which is one of the largest on the West Coast.

The firm also deals with very complex global issues for corporations and multinational families. Some of these services include international tax and international assurance services.

As one of the leading San Francisco accounting firms, BPM has clients on six continents and an in-house professional staff that’s fluent in Chinese, Japanese, and other Asian languages.

Leading Edge Alliance

BPM is a member of the Leading Edge Alliance, which is an international network of select and reputable independent accounting firms. Through membership in Leading Edge, BPM can expand its global reach and resources even further.

Working with Leading Edge allows the team members at BPM to tap into extensive resources to deliver the very best in targeted service to each and every client.

As part of the Leading Edge Alliance, BPM is also required to adhere to rigid standards and professional requirements, and associates must undergo regular peer review inspections.

Burr Pilger Mayer Leading Edge Alliance-min

Women of BPM

As an innovative accounting firm in San Francisco, there is a general focus on the people and culture that’s so important here, and one component of that is the Women of BMP program. More than 50% of the client service professional staff is made up of women, and 24% of the partners are female.

Additionally, 59% of managers and directors are women, and 76% of the women professionals have been with BMP for five years or more.  As a result, this San Francisco accounting firm has received awards, including being recognized as one of the 2015 Best Public Accounting Firms for Women by AWSCPA.

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DZH Phillips Review

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DZH Phillips is a top San Francisco accountant, tax specialist, and advisement firm. The firm maintains offices in not only San Francisco but throughout the Bay Area, including locations in Oakland, San Rafael, and Burlingame. DZH Phillips offers a full array of accounting and auditing services to meet the needs of businesses as well as nonprofits, families, and individuals.

Core offerings from this accounting firm in San Francisco include tax services, assurance and advisory, litigation support, forensic accounting, wealth management, and outsourced accounting.

Key Factors That Enabled This Firm to Rank as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm in San Francisco, CA

Represented below are factors that led to the inclusion of DZH Phillips as one of the top 11 2016 San Francisco accounting firms.

Female Leadership

DZH Phillips holds the distinction of being one of the biggest majority women-owned advisory and accounting firms in the Bay Area, and it was recently recognized as the 28th largest women-owned business in the Bay Area by the San Francisco Business Times.

More than 60% of the 110 employees are women at DZH Phillips, and 7 of the 9 partners at this CPA in San Francisco are female.

DZH Phillips Top 100 Women-Owned Businesses 2015-min

CPAmerica Affiliation

DZH Phillips is a member of CPAmerica, a prestigious association of independently-owned and managed accounting and consulting firms. With the CPAmerica membership, DZH Phillips can access premier resources that improve its quality of service delivered to clients.

It receives in-depth expertise and information from top CPA professionals around the world, and it can also gain international insight that can be imperative to servicing global clients.

Core Values

Core values drive every area of service provided to clients to ensure that not only is professionalism always offered at the highest level but also that each engagement creates value.

Core values at DZH Phillips are:

  • Opportunity: This refers to taking calculated risks and exploring unique opportunities to achieve personal and professional growth.
  • Trust: To create a strong business environment, there must be trust, which includes integrity, good faith, and fairness.
  • Respect: It’s important to respect others’ time, talents, and commitments.
  • Balance: At DZH Phillips, balance refers to the management of the personal and professional needs of each unique individual.
  • Sustainability/Responsibility: DZH Phillips believes it has a responsibility to positively impact and sustain the team as well as clients and the community.
  • Passion: Service is excellent at this accountant in San Francisco because of the dedication to making a difference with passion and commitment.

Specialized Industries

To provide impeccable service, DZH Phillips specializes in working with a few specific industries. This allows it to delve into each distinctive client engagement with an eye toward the unique elements of that industry.

Industries served include:

  • Consumer goods
  • Financial services
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Professional service firms
  • Real estate 
  • Construction and engineering

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Frank, Rimerman + Co. Review

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As one of the leading accounting firms in San Francisco, Frank, Rimerman + Co. works largely with some of the most innovative companies and clients in Silicon Valley. This firm is one of the largest locally-owned accounting and consulting service providers in Northern California, and it has been part of the community for more than 65 years.

The goal at Frank, Rimerman + Co. is to deliver passionate, enthusiastic services, and since the founding of this top accounting firm in San Francisco in 1949, it has grown to include four offices in Northern California.

Key Factors That Allowed This Firm to Rank as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

When narrowing down the top San Francisco accountants, below are some of the factors leading to the inclusion of Frank, Rimerman + Co. as one of 2016’s top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Commitment to Quality

Everything at Frank, Rimerman + Co. is driven by dedication to creating client services that are timely, accurate, and personalized. The firm also maintains a sense of practicality, comprehensiveness, and reliability, all with the best interest of the clients at the forefront of service.

Some of the other elements of quality that are part of service provision include accessibility and prompt responsiveness to client questions and interactions as well as valuing input from clients and the larger business community. This quality is bolstered by participation in independent accounting firm reviews every three years, conducted by peer firms.

Partner Participation

An accounting firm is only as strong as its professional staff, which is why the partners at this CPA in San Francisco work to take a hands-on role in the development and growth of each associate.

Its goal is to develop associates into the partners and managers of the future, and employees are offered engaging and challenging opportunities that allow them to become the best at what they do.

Frank, Rimerman + Co. also offers extensive internal training and development programs so that team members, who are an essential component of the success of this accounting firm in San Francisco, can exceed the standards of the accounting profession.

Community Commitment

As one of the leading CPA firms in San Francisco, Frank, Rimerman + Co. maintains a strong presence in the community and strives to give back to the city in which it works.

Some of the ways the firm is involved in the local community include the sponsorship of professional events and scholarship endowments for the account departments of local universities. Also, many of the firm’s partners and managers serve on boards for local foundations as well as professional organizations.

International Network

Frank, Rimerman + Co. is an independent member of Baker Tilly International, which is a network of 154 leading, independent accounting and business service firms.

These companies are located in 133 countries, which means the team at this firm can offer personalized and localized service as well as access global resources. 

Participation in this elite network lets Frank, Rimerman + Co. offer clients innovative and proven strategies across all industries and service areas.

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Harrington Group Review

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Leading among accounting firms in San Francisco, Harrington Group is a certified public accounting and consulting firm that also maintains offices in Los Angeles. Services include auditing, accounting, management consulting, and tax services.

The Harrington Group was founded over 15 years ago by Joseph Harrington and now includes partners Job M. Quesada, Sean E. Cain, Tonnetta L. Conner, and Carlos Davis.

Key Factors That Enabled Us to Rank This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

When narrowing down the list of San Francisco accounting firms, the following represents criteria used in the selection of Harrington Group as one of 2016’s top accounting firms in San Francisco.

Nonprofit Specialization

Harrington Group is unique because it focuses its accounting and advisory services exclusively on the needs of nonprofit organizations. It offers extensive knowledge in areas crucial to nonprofit financial success and accounting, including government funding, strategic analysis, and nonprofit organizational structures.

It also has robust knowledge in government funding at the federal, state, and local level, and it can provide clients with knowledge regarding the complex situations that go with recording planned giving instruments commonly received by nonprofits.

Types of Clients

As part of the focus on nonprofit clients, Harrington Group has a great deal of experience working with the following types of clients and organizations:

  • Associations and membership groups
  • Foundations
  • Charities
  • Private schools
  • Political action committees
  • Other types of nonprofits
  • For-profit subsidiaries

Client Training

The objective at Harrington Group is to help members of the nonprofit community, including its boards of directors, learn from valuable resources and insights regarding its financial and accounting issues.

As a result, the Harrington Group offers training sessions for boards of directors with information and guidance on topics relevant to the groups that are in charge of nonprofit governments. Past topics at these training symposiums have included strategic planning, budgeting, and how to understand nonprofit financial statements.

Team Expertise

As a leading accounting firm in San Francisco, one of the greatest strengths of the Harrington Group is its people. Its professionals work to remain informed on even the newest developments for nonprofits, which is how it can create innovative financial and accounting solutions for clients.

It becomes a strategic partner of each client and works to create relationships built on respect and trust. Many of the professionals  from the Harrington Group are speakers at various conferences and seminars because they are so knowledgeable in the specific area of nonprofit accounting.

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Hemming Morse, LLP Review

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Hemming Morse is a certified public accountant firm as well as forensic and financial consultants. Along with being a top tax accountant in San Francisco, Hemming Morse also maintains offices in Walnut Creek, Los Angeles, Santa Rosa, San Mateo, Fresno, Irvine, and Chico.

This CPA in San Francisco was founded in 1958 and has more than 100 employees working across all of its offices. It handles everything from complicated, high-profile cases to local engagements.

Key Factors Leading Us to Rank This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

Listed below is a brief representation of factors leading to the inclusion of Hemming Morse as one of 2016’s top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Personalized Service

Expertise and personalized attention drive all services provided by this accounting firm in San Francisco. The service areas where Hemming Morse focuses include:

  • Forensic and financial consulting: The forensic consulting team works on business-critical topics, including accounting, valuation, and economics. The forensic services are applicable in courtrooms and boardrooms alike.
  • Financial consulting: The goal of the financial consulting team from Hemming Morse is to offer relevant insight and advisement to solve complex business challenges throughout its organization’s life cycle.
  • Financial and compliance auditing of employee benefit plans: There are staff members at Hemming Morse dedicated exclusively to this area, and they are divided into two subgroups. One group focuses on financial auditing and the other on compliance auditing.

Professional Memberships

The team members at Hemming Morse are members of prestigious professional organizations, and many also often teach courses and write expert content in their area of expertise.

Associates and partners at Hemming Morse maintain leadership roles and affiliations with organizations like the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the California Society of CPAs, the Fair Value forum, and the San Francisco Valuation Roundtable.

International Access

Hemming Morse offers the ability to serve the needs of diverse global clients. As part of that offering, it is active members of The International Accounting Group, a global network of CPAs operating along with TAGLaw, which is similarly an alliance of top worldwide law firms.

Thanks to this affiliation, Hemming Morse can remain involved with the other member organizations to keep it ahead of not just the accounting industry in general but also global regulations and guidelines. The organizations have more than 250 member firms, with locations in almost 100 countries, giving Hemming Morse a substantial global reach.

Forensic Accounting Services

As a San Francisco CPA and consulting firm offering very specialized services, clients of Hemming Morse can turn to the company for assistance in every area of even the most complex of forensic accounting issues. Some of the subcategories of forensic accounting services offered by Hemming Morse include:

  • Business valuation
  • Complex economic damages
  • Construction disputes
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
  • Forensic accounting investigations
  • Intellectual property disputes
  • Labor and employment 
  • White collar crime investigations

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Hood & Strong LLP Review

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Hood & Strong LLP is an accounting firm in San Francisco delivering tax, audit, and business advisory services tailored to the needs of a variety of clients, including businesses across many industries, individuals, nonprofits, and startups. Hood & Strong is one of the oldest and largest public accounting firms in Northern California, founded in 1917.

The firm has offices in both San Francisco and San Jose, and 13 partners lead 100 dynamic, talented professionals that comprise this reputable, independent firm.

Key Factors That Enabled This Firm to Rank as One of the Top 2016 Accounting Firms

When selecting companies to include on this ranking of San Francisco accountant firms, the following were criteria used to select Hood & Strong as one of 2016’s top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Client Partnerships

Essential to the approach to client engagements at Hood & Strong is a dedication to cultivating and fostering a partnership with each client. The method relies on taking a look from the inside out and spending time with the staff and board of a client’s company to ensure mutual goals are clearly defined and understood by all stakeholders.

The goal of client partnerships is also to make sure there is a sense of value creation and productivity, but also enjoyment.


To set itself apart from other accounting firms in San Francisco, Hood & Strong outlines the following commitments it makes to each client:

  • Working with Hood & Strong will be done in a way that helps clients achieve their goals, whatever they may be.
  • Service is exemplary and based on a combination of experience and in-depth knowledge.
  • Proactive communication will ensure clients are always knowledgeable of any and all relevant issues.
  • There is a focus on remaining on time and on budget with each interaction and client engagement.
  • The relationships with clients and associates from Hood & Strong are viewed as a partnership based on trust and transparent, open, honest communication.

McGladrey Alliance

Hood & Strong is one of the CPA firms in San Francisco that’s part of the prestigious McGladrey Alliance, which is an affiliation of independent accounting and consulting firms.

The McGladrey Alliance lets Hood & Strong offer the resources of a national firm, yet it maintains its personalized, local approach. Benefits of being part of this elite professional organization include access to technical tools, comprehensive expertise, and resources that can be used to improve practice management.

Hood & Strong McGladrey Alliance-min

Employee Diversity

Hood & Strong maintains a diverse group of employees who can each bring to the table something unique and distinctive. As part of its commitment to diversity, it prohibits discrimination of any type, and women and minorities make up more than 60% of its total employee base as well as more than 50% of its partners.

Hood & Strong has employed many of these team members for more than 30 years, and it put in place initiatives to ensure employees  are developed and advanced in their careers.

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Lindquist, von Husen & Joyce Review

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A public accounting firm in San Francisco, Lindquist, von Husen & Joyce LLP (LvHJ), offers specialized industry services to clients throughout California. The firm was created in 1935 and has provided technical expertise and service since that time.

For more than 80 years, LvHJ has been serving the needs of diverse clients, and it has built a reputation of cultivating strong, long-term relationships with clients while also delivering service that’s timely and remains on budget. LvHJ works with individuals, families, and closely-held businesses.

Key Factors That Led Us to Rank This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

In the list below are a few of the many reasons LvHJ was selected for this ranking as one of 2016’s top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Mission and Values

Every service area and client engagement at this accountant in San Francisco is driven by a set of clearly defined values as well as a mission statement. These are a significant component of the success enjoyed by LvHJ and its clients for more than eight decades.

The mission statement of this accounting firm in San Francisco is aimed at providing top-level assurance, tax, and business advisory services that exceed client expectations and create growth and enhance the lives and careers of employees.

The values include the following:

  • Constant learning and improvement so that employees continually grow.
  • Rather than looking at short-term gains, the mission of this San Francisco accountant firm is to ensure it offers solutions that are in the best long-term interest of the firm and clients.
  • Collaboration and teamwork are crucial.
  • The team at LvHJ will do whatever it takes to serve the best interest of clients.
  • Every action is taken with an eye toward integrity through adherence to codes of conduct, focus on regulations, and upholding of ethical standards.

BKR International

As an independent member of BKR International, LvHJ has access to more than 160 independent member firms, with presence in more than 80 countries around the world. The result of this affiliation is the ability to offer internationally-driven service, without sacrificing personalization or the one-on-one experience clients have come to expect from one of the leading San Francisco accounting firms.

Resources and contacts available through BKR can help in a range of service areas, including business valuation, forensic accounting and litigation support, business and strategic planning, and operational review and analysis as well as referrals to attorneys, bankers, and other high-level professionals.

Affordable Housing and Real Estate

LvHJ is one of the CPA firms in San Francisco that’s incredibly specialized in its offerings. This specialization has allowed the firm to become a leader in audits, tax, and compliance within the industry of affordable housing.

The team at LvHJ is so experienced in this area that veteran partners and management team members travel around to provide training on the issues surrounding affordable housing accounting.

Clients within this area of service include for-profit and not-for-profit developers, LIHTCH limited partnerships, property management companies, resident service providers, and HUD properties.

Professional Development

Since an accounting firm is only as strong as its people, LvHJ puts a great deal of time and effort into the development of its employees. This ensures it’s at the top of its professional expertise in the accounting industry as well as within its area of specialization.

Along with mentorships, LvHJ offers employees firm-wide training programs to develop technical skills and stay ahead  of industry trends and changes in regulation, and it also encourages its entire staff to take the Uniform CPA examination and hold a valid CPA license for the state of California.

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Miller Kaplan Arase LLPC Review

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Since 1941, Miller Kaplan Arase has been a leader among accounting firms in San Francisco. This San Francisco CPA firm offers accounting, auditing, business management, tax, and advisory services to businesses as well as tax-exempt entities and individuals.

It works with startups, mid-market, closely-held companies, and Fortune 500 companies, and it is headquartered in Los Angeles but has offices in not only San Francisco but also Portland, Las Vegas, and Seattle.

Key Factors Considered When Ranking This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

Listed below are highlights of Miller Kaplan Arase, leading to its ranking as one of the 2016 top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

Accolades and Recognition

Miller Kaplan Arase is a high-profile accounting firm in San Francisco, and throughout its many years in business, the firm has received extensive accolades, awards, and recognition.

Recently, Miller Kaplan was recognized as a “Power Business Manager” by The Hollywood Reporter and was cited on Variety’s Business Managers Elite Report. Miller Kaplan was also named as a top 10 accounting firm by the LA Business Journal and received top ratings by the San Fernando Valley Business Journal as one of the
“Top 25 CPAs and Trusted Advisors.”

Community Leadership and Philanthropy

Essential to the success of Miller Kaplan Arase is a dedication to being a contributing part of the community in which it works. Many of the partners of the firm are leaders in nonprofits and various religious organizations, and associates often volunteer.

Some of the philanthropic groups this accounting firm in San Francisco is associated with include:

  • Habitat for Humanity
  • St. Baldrick’s Foundation
  • Toys for Tots

Varied Services

While partners, associates, and staff members are specialists in the area in which they work, this large CPA firm is also able to deliver a wide variety of services.

These services include:

  • Assurance: Audits, internal audits, agreed-upon procedures, licensing and royalties, and employee benefit plans
  • Tax: Planning, federal, multi-state and international tax law compliance, estates, gifts and trusts, and unrelated business income tax
  • Licensing and royalties: Licensing and royalty audits, consulting services, patent pool administration, customs enforcement administration, and China desk
  • Business management: Tax services, accounting, financial planning, lifestyle planning, investment administration, and family office
  • Consulting/advisory: Employer compliance reporting, media revenue measurement, strategic business planning, succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, customs enforcement administration, health care claims compliance, litigation support, benchmarking analysis, and conflict minerals

Technology Clients

San Francisco is known as an area where technology companies and startups are primary drivers of the economy. With that in mind, Miller Kaplan Arase has staff members dedicated exclusively to serving the needs of both new and established technology companies.

Technology sectors served by Miller Kaplan include hardware, software, SaaS, applications, security, semiconductors, data and memory  storage, audio and video, electronics, and media and advertising.

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OUM & Co. LLP Review

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A San Francisco accountant and business advisement firm, OUM & Co. helps clients unlock financial and accounting insights and strategies that let them grow their companies and improve their revenue. OUM was founded in 1976, based on the philosophy of building lifelong client relationships.

OUM is not only one of the leading CPA firms in San Francisco but also has a significant presence in San Ramon and the San Diego area. The company employs more than 80 professional staff members, and many of the employees holding leadership roles at the firm were, at one point, partners and managers at Big 4 accounting and financial firms.

Key Factors That Led to Our Ranking of This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

Highlighted below are unique elements of OUM leading to its selection as one of 2016’s top accounting firms in San Francisco.


As one of the leading CPA firms in San Francisco, OUM is registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) and has been since its founding. The PCAOB looks at the assurance work of the firm on a regular basis at least every three years.

Additionally, since OUM currently calls 13 publically traded companies its clients, the AICPA also looks at its assurance paperwork, and, during these reviews, this accounting firm in San Francisco has consistently received unqualified opinions, meaning it’s operating in adherence to all regulatory specifications and quality control standards, with opinions issued without qualification.

Female Employees and Leadership

Last year, the Accounting MOVE Project named OUM on its annual list as the sixth best firm for women to work for. This recognition looks at the number of female partners and principals and CPA firms, and three of the ten partners at OUM are women.

The firms ranked on the MOVE project list have shared characteristics that include measurable, consistent progress in the advancement of women, proven and continuously evolving programs to retain and advance women, and proof that the firm’s promotion of female employees is a key part of its growth and success goals.

Overall, OUM has put in place initiatives and development programs that have allowed it to reach a level of 30% female principals and partners, and it continues to work to grow that number.

OUM & Co. Best Firm 2015 Move Project-min


With an eye toward long-term relationship building, each client engagement entered into by this CPA in San Francisco is guided by a set of defined principles that collectively create its business philosophy.

This philosophy includes the following components:

  • Respect and recognition: Mutual respect is promoted throughout the organization, and the efforts of all team members are appreciated and rewarded.
  • Trust: Trust is cultivated every day and is central to all relationships. Communication is open and authentic and based on an approach of collaboration.
  • Success: Everyone at OUM works to accomplish goals with a focus on service. High standards are set and achieved throughout the organization, and everything is pursued with confidence, determination, and optimism.
  • Quality: Even the most challenging of accounting situations can be solved with a dedication to quality.
  • Community: Succeeding as a firm is more important than independent success at OUM.

Business Lifecycle

Along with robust technical knowledge and expertise, the approach undertaken at OUM is also focused on the individual business phase a client is in. Every company goes through changes in the business life cycle, and it’s important that an accountant understands this phase to offer the best planning and insight.

This is very important at OUM, and it understands everything from the simplest to the most complex issues that will face a business at any given stage of the cycle.

For example, at stage one, guidance may include choosing a tax structure and personal finance planning while stage four, the final step of  the business lifecycle, may include services such as compensation planning, legacy planning, exit strategies, and risk management and internal controls.

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Seiler LLP Review

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With a history spanning more than 50 years, Seiler LLP is a leading tax accountant in San Francisco. This top San Francisco CPA firm works with high-net-worth individuals, families, closely-held businesses, and nonprofits. Clients include community leaders, entrepreneurs, and multi-generational families.

Seiler was founded by Donald H. Seiler, in 1957, and currently has offices in the Silicon Valley area and San Francisco. It works with clients not only in the Bay Area but also throughout the US and the world, with industries range from advertising and PR to wineries and utilities.

Key Factors That Led to Our Ranking of This Firm as a Top 2016 Accounting Firm

Represented below are factors leading to the selection of Seiler as one of 2016’s top 11 accounting firms in San Francisco.

HLB International

Seiler is a member of HLB International, a global network of independent accounting and professional services firms. HLB International has 279 worldwide member firms, and, through this affiliation, Seiler is able to bring to the table international expertise and access to unparalleled resources to solve even the most complicated accounting challenges.

HLB membership offers the Seiler team excellent access to 19,000 participating staff and 2,100 partners from offices in almost 130 countries.

Integrated Approach

The integrated approach maintained by this accounting firm in San Francisco is one of the many elements that make it a standout. This holistic approach is designed to benefit clients who have diverse revenues, assets, and philanthropic interests. The approach creates valuable, customized solutions.

These services will take into account everything from family structure to individual goals, and this approach is key to helping clients solve even the most complex of financial issues.

Seiler Integrated Approach-min

Thought Leadership

Seiler is respected as a top accountant in San Francisco because they aren’t just technical service providers but thought leaders in the industry.

Its team of accounting professionals creates a variety of articles on business and personal finance topics, and it offers its research, insight, and knowledge library to its clients to help drive their decision-making.

Along with articles covering current news, topics, and tax planning tools, Seiler has also compiled helpful complementary resources, such as industry whitepapers, which can be accessed by clients.


Seiler is an accounting firm in San Francisco that works to be socially responsible, give back to the community, and focus on sustainability.

This San Francisco CPA firm remains committed to protecting the environment, both locally and globally, and it uses operational strategies, such as paperless systems, in-office recycling, and consciousness, in the selection of work-related materials.

Both of the offices of Seiler in Redwood City and San Francisco are also set in LEED-certified buildings.

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Conclusion – Top 11 Accounting Firms in San Francisco, CA

San Francisco is an exciting US city full of business opportunities and organizations of all sizes and within a range of industries. It’s this evolving economic environment that makes the selection of a CPA in San Francisco so necessary.

The above organizations represent a valuable mix of personalized service and individualized insight, along with many years and often decades of industry experience.

These are the accounting firms in San Francisco that excel at creating close client relationships, maintaining a strong reputation, and always keeping up with the changing regulations and quality control standards of an evolving industry.

The CPA firms in San Francisco included on this list also offer a broad range of services yet manage to specialize in each of these service areas, and many of the firms work across a range of industries as well, particularly those industries that are relevant to the San Francisco and Bay Area.

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