Accounting firm consolidates offices in Elgin
By Paul Sullivan For The Courier-News September 24, 2012 6:44PM
Dave Nissen, managing partner of Mueller & Co.
Mueller & Co. LLP
2230 Point Blvd., Suite 700 (Until Nov. 1)
Elgin, IL 60123
Updated: October 26, 2012 6:02AM
The accounting firm of Mueller & Co. LLP is closing its St. Charles office and moving 25 employees from there along with 65 Elgin-based employees into a new, 25,000-square-foot office at Fisher Corporate Center, 1707 N. Randall Road at I-90 in Elgin.
“There’s a lot of value to this move,” said Dave Nissen, Mueller’s managing partner.
Mueller signage will share signage with Fisher Corporate Center and be clearly visible from heavily trafficked I-90, he said.
“That will increase the firm’s visibility. It’s not efficient to have two groups working 12 miles apart. We want to provide the best possible service. Now everybody will be going to the same coffee pot, so to speak. It’ll be easier to have face-to-face meetings; just walk down the hall to talk with an expert. We are here to help everyone of our clients live a better life.”
Nissen credited the Elgin Area Chamber with helping the firm to make a smooth transition into its new offices. “The chamber helped us connect with the Mayor (Dave Kaptain) and city staff. I like the mayor, trying to balance the city’s budget. I told him, if you were running for president, I’d vote for you.”
Mike O’Kelley, vice president of economic development for the Elgin Development Corp., said Mueller received one of the last per-job incentives offered by the city. Typically, that program has paid $1,000 for every newly created position with a base annual salary in excess of $40,000 (excluding benefits). Mueller’s grant is capped at $40,000.
Mueller and Co. LLP, founded in Elgin in 1968 by Al Mueller, is now ranked by Crain’s Chicago Business as the 19th largest accounting firm in the Chicago area. The firm is consistently recognized by various publications as a Best Place to Work.
“People are our inventory,” said Nissen. “We want people calling us up because they want to work here.”
Providing business and tax services to 750 corporate clients and 1,500 individuals, Mueller is a fast-growing company directed by five-year plans. “If I weren’t bullish on the future, we wouldn’t be making this move,” he said.
The next five-year plan calls for one large suburban location and a significant Chicago location. In 2009, Mueller had 75 employees. Projections for a plan ending in 2014 call for a head count of 125.
“We have to adapt to technology, develop levels of skills and service that perhaps we won’t use for another two years. Two-and-a-half years ago, we hired 12 people in strategic strikes (positions such as): a non-profit expert, real estate specialist, and IT. The IT expert is also an internal audit specialist. Now more than ever, people need to make sure they’re not taken advantage of electronically.”
Nissen, who started with the firm in 1980, has never had another job. He spends about two-thirds of his time planning for the future of the company.
“I leave a lot of the other work to our 15 partners. That’s why we’re so successful. Most firms burden the managing partner with client responsibility. My No. 1 client is Mueller.”