Outsourcing has been around for hundreds of years and more recently the accounting industry has begun outsourcing many of its business processes both within the US and offshore.
Initially adopted as a niche strategy by larger firms, outsourcing has shifted to a dominant tactic used by many and is now showing as an evolving trend by smaller firms who also want access to the benefits delivered from outsourcing. This in turn is enabling them to grow much faster now they too can access cost savings, outside expertise, improved services and better technology.
Who is doing it?
The top 10 accounting firms have built extremely successful businesses and one factor for their success is how they utilized the outsourcing model and experienced huge benefits. The major difference being; these firms went offshore and were able to set up facilities and management teams to head their own divisions and processes which gave them all the benefits of outsourcing while keeping complete internal control because they had the resources to do so.
Why firms outsource?
The major reason for companies to outsource is to reduce cost or headcount but in today’s world there are many more predominant reasons. The main driving factor is to gain a strategic advantage by allowing the in-house staff to focus on the businesses core value.
Other major benefits include having access to a wider skillset of experienced professionals. These professionals are solely focused and are up to date with the technology that improves the efficiency and accuracy of the job.
Quality improvement is another major benefit. A lot of outsourcing companies rely on producing results quickly but obviously it is no good if the work they produce is of a low quality with mistakes. If it is a quality-driven outsourcing company with proven experience, you can have the comfort that they have the processes in place to ensure the work coming back has minimal to no mistakes and still has a great turnaround time.
If you are considering to outsource, please refer our slideshre presentation here.
When to outsource?
It is always a good time to begin outsourcing. The main question is which tasks should be outsourced?
The simple answer is day-to-day time-consuming activities should be the first to be outsourced as these can stall the growth of a business. With the level of technology today, outsourcing has become a much more accessible tool to small businesses and is no longer restricted to larger businesses. The first steps to outsourcing like anything is not going to be an immediate change. Every business is different and everyone likes their work being completed in a certain way so it is important to understand there is always a learning curve. With the right outsourcing provider, this learning curve will be much shorter because of experience and processes that are in place, such as by enhancing communication.
Through outsourcing you are able to level the playing field somewhat and compete with the larger firms. Especially in the accounting industry where you are selling your time and knowledge; make sure you can be the CPA who is being personable with clients, and giving them the time they want while having work completed by other qualified accountants.
Read our another article - Thinking of outsourcing? Try this checklist