Outsourcing Accounting: 6 Things You Need to Know for Your Small Business
By Analytix Editorial Team
December 29, 2009
The many advantages of outsourcing accounting are attracting a lot of attention of small business owners. Outsourcing accounting functions has the potential of saving small businesses thousands of dollars per year, which they spend on hiring, training and retention of in-house accounting professionals. Due to its recent popularity, many accounting firms have started offering customized accounting solutions especially for small businesses. However, before deciding to go for outsourcing accounting for your small business, there are some pointers you should keep in mind. The following are some of them:
- One of the first things you need to be aware of while outsourcing accounting is to have a clear idea of what you want from your accounting firm. To make a success of your small business accounting, you need to have clear expectations and make your accounting firm understand them. Many outsourced accounting projects fail due to misconceptions and lack of communications between the small business owner and the accounting firm.
- Don’t trust an accounting firm blindly when you are outsourcing accounting functions for your business. No matter how much their services are recommended, you need to take things in your hands and check things out. In case you decide to use online accounting services, you need to ensure that the firm which you are using for outsourcing accounting uses adequate security measures to protect your accounting data. If your accounting firm is an offshore one, ensure that the staff working there is qualified enough to take care of your accounting requirements.
- While outsourcing accounting functions, be sure to ask for references of past clients from the accounting firm concerned. You will get an idea about the quality of work as well as the experience and skills of accounting staff by looking at past work of the firm.
- Enter into a clear contract with your outsourced accounting firm so that the terms and conditions are specified right from the beginning. A written contract goes a long way in ensuring transparency in your dealings with your accounting firm.
- You can start the outsourcing accounting project by giving the accounting firm limited responsibilities. This will allow you to set the workflow and judge the caliber of the outsourced accounting firm. Allow the firm to prove its potential and take things forward from there.
- While outsourcing accounting’s main benefit is cost savings, it is should not be the only factor in selecting the accounting firm. Cheap is not always the best option for your accounting services; if the quality of work is not up to the mark, it may cost you much more later on to correct the mistakes of a cheap accounting firm. Outsourcing accounting should not only save you costs, it should also be high in the qualitative factor.
Outsourcing accounting will probably become the most useful business decision you will take for your small business. While it has benefits as well as risks associated with it, if you make informed decisions, the benefits will far exceed the risks for your small business. Find an experienced accounting firm which can become your partner in expanding your business and making it more profitable.