The COVID-19 epidemic has either overloaded businesses with activity or bought them to a standstill.
Either way in recent weeks we have experienced a lot of interest from businesses to fully ‘outsource’ their bookkeeping and accounting tasks resulting in either cost reductions and/or improved time management in actually running the business and more time for their clients.
We are now seeing the focus being shifted from ‘lost time’ (administrative functions such as manual bookkeeping, payroll processing and other accounting tasks) to better ‘productive time’ with more focus on business management, client deliverables, performance, future growth and forward planning.
Why consider outsourcing?
There are some very good reasons to consider outsourcing. Before embarking on any outsourcing program, owners should consider the root causes, or underlying reasons, why inefficiency may be present within their business. By doing this first, owners can then consider the type and extent of outsourcing which is right for them.
Some questions to ask to see whether outsourcing might be right include:
- Do you need to reduce your staff headcount while still keeping your finger on the numbers?
- Are general administrative functions such as payroll processing, bookkeeping and other general accounting tasks taking up valuable hours which could be used for more meaningful business management?
- Do you experience frequent staff changes resulting in increased training costs and lost time?
- Are you finding it a challenge to keep up to date with changes in legislation?
- Is managing software changes, renewal costs and training updates an issue?
- Are you experiencing increases in quarterly or annual bookkeeping costs?
- Are you spending many hours outside of work to complete accounting tasks?
- Are you finding it hard to review profits, performance and future growth plans?
- Are you doing the bare minimum to get by without really taking notice of the data and what your financial results are telling you?
Employees sometimes face frustration in having to do so many tasks in very limited time without being fully resourced or trained sufficiently. This, in addition to their respective individual daily tasks can result in high turnover from dissatisfied staff and disharmony within the business.
What to consider when outsourcing
Finding efficiency in lost time is a key area of focus to improving overall business efficiency.
We recommend you review your internal time and costs versus a one-off monthly or quarterly outsourcing cost to assist you with making the right choice. The costs of system upgrades, office space, training, supplies, salaries and benefits of a full time equivalent employee all add up over time.
Some of the common accounting tasks that can easily be outsourced include preparation of:
- Monthly bookkeeping including
- Bank reconciliations
- Entering supplier invoices
- Coordinating supplier payments
- Monthly management accounts to give you a snapshot of your business performance
- Monthly payroll for staff and superannuation management
- Budget and Forecast preparation and reporting against actual figures
- Lodgement of monthly/quarterly Activity Statements
- Reviews and advice of your business affairs if live data is available
- Quarterly performance update and tax savings estimate
- Annual payroll reconciliation and reporting including preparing end of year PAYG
- Payment Summary Statements
- Lodgement of Annual Financial Statements and Tax Returns
- Plus support by email and phone throughout the year on any accounting or tax issues.