Production Accounting

H. Jakobsen & Co. brings insight, industry experience and financial controls to Production Accounting serving TV, Film, Documentaries, Commercial and Music Production Companies.

We understand some of the major challenges that production companies face with production accounting – which is just what we love solving.  H. Jakobsen & Co. strives to ensure accuracy and streamlined workflows with top level Production Accounting Services.

“H. Jakobsen & Co. effectively took a complex, multi-million dollar business and successfully took over the bookkeeping, simplifying some systems while retaining others. Heidi came highly recommended for her thoroughness, dependability, and accuracy. She delivered that and more: Cool under fire and a pleasure to work with. Lisa is doing well executing Heidi’s vision and following up with timeliness and accuracy.” — Anonymous, President, Media Production Company, San Francisco, CA


Independent Contractors or Employees?


The Challenge: If your production company is in the film or music industry, your business is constantly hiring new personnel.  Traditionally, many personnel in the entertainment field are paid as independent contractors, but the IRS and States have their own rules defining the classification of “employee” status vs. “contractor” status and how each should be paid. Companies could be liable for significant payroll back taxes if personnel classification is inaccurately determined.

 H. Jakobsen Solution: Let us advise you of the IRS and State rules about the definition of an employee vs. independent contractor, as they apply to your productions.



Methods for allocating a portion of your profits for taxes?


The Challenge: We know it’s tough for TV and Music Companies to figure out how much to set aside for taxes. It is especially challenging when a music tour/television series runs from one calendar year to the next.

H. Jakobsen Solution: Although we don’t prepare tax returns, we can help you determine the amount of taxes to put aside. We start by obtaining historical gross margins or current net profits from music tours/shows or TV series/episodes. Then we determine a percentage to set aside for taxes or consult with your tax specialist and prepare customized reports for them, if needed. Having these funds budgeted, allows peace of mind when taxes are due.



Accurate budget tracking for TV series or music tours?


The Challenge: Budget tracking is very complex in production. Invoice management for the many crews, rentals, fees, and even travel need a cohesive system for organization and tracking the budget actualizations. Petty cash and travel expense reimbursements for film or music tours can become a budgetary nightmare if receipts are not accounted for properly – or worse, if embezzlement or duplicate payments occur.

H. Jakobsen Solution: During your budget process, we can help you use historical information to guide your budget preparation process from similar television series or music tours. If you don’t have historical information, we can help you build a budgeting form to track line items for personnel, equipment rentals, various fees, overhead costs, and columns to calculate travel expenses such as hotel, airfare, per diem and number of days on site.  We can check invoices for duplication, giving you peace of mind that expenses are carefully monitored, direct show expenses are properly assigned to specific shows (separated from general operating expenses for the company), and any red flags are brought to your attention expediently. Most importantly, we can help you set up systems for improved budget monitoring or put checks and balances in place, if needed.




Keeping your television or music accounting department current with production and tour accountants on location?


The Challenge: Because of the complexity of film or music production on location or touring on the road, there can be financial delays between the production and the in-house entertainment accounting department. During travel days or sites with no internet connection, it’s still imperative that the tour accountant and the music accounting or film accounting department are able to manage financial records without delay.

H. Jakobsen Solution: We offer a pre-tour meeting with production or your tour accountant and provide them with the necessary information they need for cost and time saving processes to instantly upload the information into the back-office production accounting software. Additionally, we can advise on efficient methods of financial monitoring and internal communications with the company’s accounting department, with tax compliance records and financial clarity.