Benefits of Working for a Locally Owned CPA Firm

At Maxwell Locke & Ritter, we are proud to be the largest locally owned accounting firm in Central Texas. We have 130 team members, including 86 CPAs and 15 non-CPA accountants, many of whom began their careers at one of the Big 4 or another large firm. While larger firms have upsides that can’t be replicated, there are countless benefits at our locally owned firm that have led to our success in attracting and retaining talent from international and national firms.

Benefit: The Clients

People often believe that smaller firms mean unsophisticated clients which is not the case for us. Maxwell Locke & Ritter has an expansive client roster full of both locally and nationally recognized companies spread across a variety of industries. Our clients provide us with engaging and challenging work that feeds our desire for lifelong learning. Our service model allows our team to foster close-knit relationships with our clients and serve as their trusted advisors.

Benefit: The Career Paths

Larger, traditional firms offer their employees a stringent career path. Team members at Maxwell Locke & Ritter take the driver’s seat in their career progression with the freedom to advance at their own pace. We don’t have a set path or timeline for the development of any role nor do we have an “up or out” mentality. The partner track is available for those who desire that challenge, but many team members opt to further their development through increased responsibility and deepened technical expertise as a utility player.

Benefit: The Autonomy

Because of their size, national and international firms will always struggle with red tape. One of the biggest benefits of any locally owned CPA firm is the in-house decision-making ability without the drag of corporate approval. We make decisions on our timeline with our employees’ best interest at heart. ML&R team members have a unique opportunity to steer the decision-making process that directly impacts our firm. Our cross-functional associate-led teams drive many of our policies and initiatives. These teams develop our firm’s strategic plan, plan our social activities, implement technology changes, and facilitate our wellness program.

Benefit: The Team

Our core values encourage open communication and transparency and give our team unrivaled access to our partners. Each person is welcomed and empowered to utilize our open-door policy to discuss firm matters, individual career goals, ideas for policies and initiatives as well as personal and professional challenges. Although we have over 100 team members, our firm maintains a sense of family. We enjoy working with one another and benefit from the support and encouragement that comes from our non-competitive culture. The icing on the cake is the close personal friendships that will last beyond our tenure at ML&R.

What Team ML&R Enjoys Most About Working for a Locally-Owned CPA Firm:

David Knippa, audit | Previous experience at PwC: Working directly with and being connected to leadership. Also, our leadership incorporates folks from all levels to tackle initiatives and make decisions. Everyone has a chance to participate.

Kyle Parks, tax | Previous experience at EY: The freedom to pursue our individual desires and being entrepreneurial in our approach.

Tara Holman, audit | Previous experience at BDO: Everyone knows who you are and cares about you and your career path.  You personally know the decision makers of the firm. We have a large presence in the Austin-area, so very rarely do we need to travel to out-of-town clients.

Doris Ayala, tax | Previous experience at PwC: Not having to travel away from family. I feel more connected with clients that live in the same city.

Saad Syed, audit | Previous experience at PwC and EY: I never knew about all the businesses and non-profits in the city I’ve been living in for three years. I enjoy how we at MLR help local businesses. It contributes to a sense of belonging to the city which I absolutely love.

A.J. Zimmerhanzel, audit | Previous experience at Deloitte: Decisions are made quickly. Our client base is primarily local so there are minimum client service matters that involve overnight travel.

Heather Beliveau, tax | Previous experience at KPMG and EY: We have more input into how the firm does things because we are working directly with the owners.

Taja Williams, audit | Previous experience at BDO: Leadership is visible, transparent, and accessible. The firm’s people are open to change.

Blaine Martin, tax | Previous experience at Weaver and Whitley Penn: Seeing my clients around town and being able to buy their products or use their services


Interested in a career at Maxwell Locke & Ritter? Visit our careers page.

Articles/Resources Contact Forms

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.