Hiring an accountant for a small business can sometimes be challenging. We would add fulltime bookkeepers to that statement as well. Persons skilled in accounting and bookkeeping tend to want to work in larger companies. Others prefer to work for themselves as many CPAs do. People that have the qualifications and are willing to work at a small or mid-sized business frequently are not within the budget. At Valenta we work with many SMB clients for business optimization and Finance and Accounting Staff augmentation. Frequently our optimization recommendations include virtual staff and offshoring roles for a business. Back office roles and positions where it is more difficult to find specific hard to fill skill sets typically rise to the top of the list.
There are tons of good reasons to consider outsourcing roles like an accountant for a small business. Outsourcing and staff augmentation can be beneficial for a business and the employees that work there. In the remainder of this blog, we will examine why and how outsourcing an accountant for small business can make sense.
Get Hard to Find Expert Skills
We alluded to this above, but we believe the number one reason to outsource an accountant for a business (or a bookkeeper) is to get those needed skill sets into a business. Every business is made up of people with different capabilities. It is best when those skill sets are complementary. Often a business, and particularly a small business, can struggle to fill a role where the skills are not close to its core. Sometimes it is possible to not even know what you do not know in an area outside your expertise. Bringing in outside help that has only worked in a specific job function and is up to date on the latest software tools and practices in accounting and bookkeeping can be invaluable. The process of recruiting, hiring, and training new employees can be daunting and time-consuming. With outsourced accounting services, you will always be contracting resources who have worked in the field.
Focus on What is Most Important
If bringing in needed expert skills is the number 1 reason for outsourcing and staff augmentation, the ability to focus on what is most important is reason number 2. Utilizing outsourced accounting services and outsourced bookkeeping services, small businesses can be laser focused on their core business and what is most important. They can focus activities directly related to, why they are in business, what they make, what services they provide, what they do, etc. Offloading back office work that does not directly impact revenue numbers is smart and makes sense. It is not that accounting is not important, but increasing sales, providing quality services and products, and spending quality time with customers, simply must have a higher priority. Finally, time and dedication can be given to strategic direction setting.
Reduce Costs & Increase Profitability
According to Glassdoor, the annual salary of an accountant in the US is 70K per year. Please find a link to their page on this here (https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/accountant-salary-SRCH_KO0,10.htm). This salary amount does not consider government taxes for Social Security, unemployment, and other items. It also does not account for costs related to health insurance or infrastructure for employees in the form of office space and computer equipment. Outsourced accounting services and outsourced bookkeeping services can be provided for a fraction of these costs. Typically, it is one third to half the costs of salaries, and with no additional costs for taxes or benefits. Virtual staff can be a great option for small businesses. Besides reducing costs, flexibly addressing the staffing requirements of a business, virtual staff can dramatically improve bottom-line results. Virtual staff is an excellent tool in the toolbox to improve profitability. It cuts cost, improves focus, and frees up time for business owners, principals, and executives.
Wide Variety of Service and Functions Provided
All the typical range of functions within a company’s accounting department can be met by outsourced staff. Procure to pay, accounts payable, accounts receivable, general ledger, and chart of accounts work can all be conducted. General ledger and subledger reconciliation, bank reconciliations, journal entries, fixed asset accounting and financial close activities can be performed. Balance sheets, P&L’s, Cashflow reports, variance analysis and other management reports can also all be prepared by virtual and outsourced accounting services. Staff is also familiar with all the same software tools and applications that are used onshore. Valenta for example provides staff skilled with QuickBooks, Xero, Sage, FreshBooks, Zoho, SAP, SAP Concur, Microsoft Dynamics, Oracle NetSuite, Oracle JD Edwards, Workday, Myob and many others. The capabilities and services provided are no different than if they were inhouse.
Flexibility & Scalability
All outsourced accounting services and outsourced bookkeeping services are contract based. They are all flexible and all typically run month to month. This flexible aspect of outsourcing is quite different than the employer employee relationship, … which is much more rigid and inflexible. The employer and employee relationship is also one that comes with risks and liability. The flexibility of outsourced accounting services and outsourced bookkeeping services also means that they are very scalable. Businesses can ramp up and ramp down quickly based on business conditions. This aspect of outsourcing means that staffing will not be a hinderance to growth.
Supplement Inhouse Staff
In our experience, we are typically not replacing in-house staff with outsourced accounting or outsourced bookkeeping. Outsourcing works best when done as staff augmentation and when outsourced staff works in conjunction with in-person staff. In an SMB, our resources might work with that business’s small accounting department, their Finance head, or their CPA. The staff that we provide are virtual employees. They act just like they would if they are a local work from home employee. However, a small business can combine those same work from home capabilities with the advantages of cost savings and flexibility outlined above.
Want to Learn More?
Frequently businesses seek us out directly to provide outsourced staff and our discussions are not always part of a consulting engagement. This is testament to the power and validity of outsourcing. A quick and no charge consultation can help determine if outsourcing is a good fit for your business. In addition to being a provider of staff augmentation and outsourcing, Valenta is a business consulting, digital transformation, and business software integration services provider. We focus on serving small and midsized businesses. We provide the same services large consulting firms offer to the Fortune 1,000. If you would like to learn more about outsourced accountants or outsourced bookkeepers, please let us know. Our website is an excellent source of information if you would like to read more.
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