Similar to a well maintained engine, a business’s books will continue to run correctly when they get the attention they need. Start neglecting little issues here and there, and the problems compound. Next thing you know, you’re in the shop needing a complete, and costly, overhaul.
In order to keep your well-oiled books running smoothly, we recommend maintaining your financials by giving them regular attention from professionals. Aside from enjoying less business related stress, there are other benefits to having your books managed by a professional firm.
5 Reasons To Outsource Your Bookkeeping
Access to Professionals – Working with a professional bookkeeping firm gives you access to an entire team worth of resources, something most businesses can’t afford to have in-house. A firm might even have specialized departments to handle things like payroll or merchant accounts. Having a group available to support you reduces risk, when compared to having one individual to rely on.
Adjustable Service Levels – Since most bookkeeping firms bill by the hour, you only pay for what you need. The service scales with the growth and changing needs of your business. If you are already using one firm to manage your books, it becomes easy to transfer ever growing tasks like data cleanup or payroll over to them.
Security – Trusting the management of your money or your business to someone can be difficult. Whether it is by accident or by criminal intent, losing cash is not something that a business owner should have to worry about. Trusting your finances to a professional firm that has procedures and policies in place can help reduce or eliminate the risk of internal fraud or embezzlement.
Transparency – Businesses that outsource their bookkeeping often find that they increase their understanding and knowledge of cash flow. A firm providing you with professional services is not only there to make sure you are aware of exactly what is happening with your money, they are also capable of providing you with solutions to help remedy many of the problems that SMBs face with their finances. In other words, they won’t try to hide problems from you; they will tell you what is going on so you can address any issues right away.
Save Time & Money – Yes, like other professional services, bookkeeping costs money. And although it might be possible for you to manage the books yourself, it’s important for owners of growing companies to consider what the value of their time is and where they can do the most good. If you’re like the average small business owner, you spend over 50 hours per year calculating payroll. If using that time to increase your revenue will be more effective to the growth of your business, you may want to consider outsourcing some of your bookkeeping related tasks.
If you are planning on making the move and outsourcing some or all of your financial management, an important thing to consider is whether or not the people taking over your books understand the processes you already have in place. Since the majority of SMBs in the US make use of Intuit’s QuickBooks Accounting software, this means finding a bookkeeper that is also a QuickBooks ProAdvisor and knows the software inside and out. Be sure to ask the following questions to make sure you are getting the most bang for your buck.
4 Tips For Selecting A QuickBooks ProAdvisor
1 – Make sure they are certified by Intuit. They should have an Intuit Certified ProAdvisor logo displayed somewhere on their website, blog, business card or email signature. You can also ask what year or versions they are certified in to see if it's what you're using.
2 – Make sure they have experience in your industry, or if they have ever provided full-charge bookkeeping at all for that matter. Larger firms may even have specialists for things like manufacturing or retail, so find out if they have a niche for the industry specific QuickBooks features you are using.
3 – Since using QuickBooks still requires a business owner and/or employees to use the accounting software, find out if they offer or provide training. A lot of the experienced ProAdvisors will know how to reduce or correct issues on the front end by providing demonstrations or training sessions.
4 – Asking about the ProAdvisor's business will help you find out if they are a good fit for providing you with services for QuickBooks and support. How large of a firm are they? Where are they located? Do they have emergency or alternate resources in the event of not being available themselves? Along with asking these questions, there is most likely more than one QuickBooks ProAdvisor in your area, so be sure to get pricing and shop around. Keep in mind, sometimes you get what you pay for.