All businesses whether small or big must deal with finance and accounting operations. There are many accounting software that can handle bookkeeping demands of small business owners. However, even with good accounting software, you may still find yourself lagging behind the tasks and spend more time on accounting and bookkeeping rather than the main operations of your business. Accountants comes at a play in this situation.
Hiring a professional accountant or outsourcing the work does makes sense as it enables business owners to focus on their core activities. Accounting professionals know how to get the job done in shortest possible manner and comply with the relevant laws and regulations. The alternative is to outsource accounting to third party service providers like Number Vision that can do accounting at a minimum cost of what normal accountants charge.
Hiring an Accountant or Outsourcing the Accounting Work: What Should I Consider before Making a Decision
Choosing the outsourcing company or hiring an internal accountant plays a critical role in defining your goals. You will like to have a reliable business partner for record keeping. There are various factors which you should consider when hiring accounting and bookkeeping professionals either on payroll or as a contractor:
- Size of Company:If you have a small company, you would only need to have basic bookkeeping to keep your financial transactions in order. Smaller companies are recommended to outsource their accounting works to local or cloud-based accountants. They charge on hourly basis and you pay only for what you need. Basic Bookkeeping includes maintaining ledgers, handling accounts payable and receivables, preparing and filing tax returns, if applicable. If you have a growing company or rather a mid-sized or large company, you need to hire professionals on payroll with good qualifications and can provide extended services apart from basic bookkeeping services as mentioned above. This may include payroll services, inventory services, invoice processing, or providing investment or business advice. For growing companies, it is also helpful if they hire professionals who can increase the services commensurate with the size of the company.
- Qualifications of Accountant: A book-keeper deals with updating ledgers and making sure that balances are showing the correct position. Accountants look at the bigger picture. They can audit books, prepare for taxes and analyze your finances. If your business is small, you can suffice with having book-keeper with good experience and track record. When hiring in-house accountants, small business owners must look at experience and proven track record of the accountant. Therefore, screening plays a very vital role in hiring an accountant. If you have growing/mid/large business, hire CPAs if possible. Hiring them can be costly but they do have specialized knowledge to provide you expert advice. They can also represent you in the IRS if you are audited. Choosing outsourced accounting services should provide higher quality and expertise to the business. That comes at a cost though. Anyway, small business owners shall make sure that the accountants whether hired or outsourced are trained and updated with latest changes in accounting systems. The business shall also take the consideration into cost and nature of business to decide whether it should hire an accountant or outsource the work.
- Geographic Focus: Your business may have its branches in various territories. For this, you have to hire professionals who can easily work with your business situated in these territories. The size and branches of Professionals should commensurate with the size of your business and its branches. If the business exists only on single locality, the accounting work can be outsourced to professionals. Whereas, on the other hand, small businesses with wings over various locals must hire an internal accountant. This helps to keep all the businesses in sync with each other and protects the business privacy.
- Communication: It is always better to have periodic communication with the book-keeper/accountant. It helps to keep things in check. The hierarchy of person who shall deal with the accountant/book-keepers shall be decided at beginning to make things simple and clear. If the business is large, the communication can be kept encrypted. Communicating with internal accountant is swift and easy while with outsourced accountants, it is time consuming and there are often cases, where they won’t agree to your changed requirements.
If you need help with your company’s accounting / book-keeping matters and are considering between hiring an accountant versus outsourcing your book-keeping matters, speak to us so that we can advise what works best for your company.