5 Best Practices When Outsourcing Your Bookkeeping
Here’s the good news: your business is growing, and you and your team are busier than ever before. The bad news? You’re quickly realizing a few things: the recruitment, hiring and retention process for an internal bookkeeper is costly, and you just don’t have the time you need to do your bookkeeping.
It’s time to explore outsourcing your bookkeeping. But how do you know you’ll get the quality you expect? Here are some of the best practices you should follow when considering to outsource your bookkeeping.
Best Practice #1: Seek Out Experience
The last thing you want is to put your books in the hands of an unestablished, inexperienced company. You need a company that has the know-how and the hands-on experience to handle anything you throw their way. Sure, a brand-new company might offer you a “deal,” but is it worth risking your business’s bookkeeping to take advantage of a discount?
Better yet, an experienced bookkeeping firm reduces risk by taking several risk mitigating measures including being insured. You’re far less likely to fall victim to theft and be on the hook when you work with a company who has a longstanding reputation for excellent work. When you can read glowing reviews about the work that’s been done over the years, it gives you something truly priceless: peace of mind.
Best Practice #2: Ensure the Company Can Grow With You
You don’t want to fully onboard a new bookkeeping service only to discover that they can’t grow with you or bridge the gaps. Be sure that they’ve got the manpower and time to increase the time they spend with you each month should the need arise! Conversely, if you’re having a slow season, ask if they are able to accommodate fewer hours without financially penalizing you.
Best Practice #3: Don’t Commit to a Long-Term Contract
If a bookkeeping company you’re considering is asking that you sign a year-long contract, you might want to take a moment and think before you put pen to paper. What are your responsibilities if, for some reason, you choose to part ways with your bookkeeping firm before the contract is completed? Will you be expected to pay until the end of the contract, even if you decide you’d prefer to bring the books back in-house a few months after you signed?
Ideally, you’ll find a bookkeeping service that offers month-to-month service plans, so you can move on whenever you’re ready.
Best Practice #4: Don’t Bargain Hunt for Bookkeepers
You’ve heard the old expression, “You get what you pay for.” If you search for a cut-rate bookkeeping service, it’s far too likely that you’ll get below-average quality services to match the lower-than-usual price.
Yes, it’s important for your business to save money, but your bookkeeping isn’t a place where you want to scrimp. You can probably find “freelance” bookkeepers at a bargain-basement rate, but where’s the guarantee that their work is truly professional? If you’re wasting time fixing mistakes and paying penalties because your bookkeeping isn’t able to complete your work in a timely fashion, you’re not really saving money after all.
Best Practice #5: Get a Comprehensive Quote
If a bookkeeping company can offer you a quick quote over the phone with any real details of your situation, you might take that quote with a grain of salt. As you know, accounting has a lot of variables; it’s probably going to take a consultation of some sort for your bookkeeping firm to fully understand the scope of work before them.
Before you commit to working with an outsourced bookkeeping firm, be sure that they clearly understand your expectations and are prepared (and properly equipped) to handle them.
Work With the Experts
Your bookkeeping is a central part of ensuring that your business stays afloat. Entrust it to professionals. At Steiner Business Solutions, we take our years of bookkeeping expertise and apply it to your business, ensuring that vital tasks such as bank reconciliations, payroll, financial statements, bill payment, and more are completed correctly and on time. Ready to talk? Click here to contact us today!