For every business, be it a large or small scale business, you will find that bookkeeping is the backbone of every business. And if you are thinking of outsourcing your bookkeeping process, you have made the right choice. However, this is just the first step towards outsourcing. One critical task is selecting a bookkeeping service provider that is the perfect fit for you and your business need. In this post, you will learn how to choose an accounting and bookkeeping services provider for your business.
Choosing the right bookkeeping services for your business can be a difficult task. And to get this task right, you must first understand your business requirement. The key questions that you need to ask yourself –
- 1. How much is the volume of transactions of your business?
The number of accounting transactions you process monthly will determine the accounting software and bookkeeping service provider needed. The number of business transactions will impact the cost and time your service provider will need to invest in your bookkeeping process. Different bookkeeping service providers have different transaction processing capacities. Some service providers might refuse clients with less transaction volume. In contrast, few others will recline businesses with high transaction volume as they cannot handle clients with high transactions. Also, the more the transactions, the more costly it will be to employ a bookkeeping agency or individual.
- 2. Which bookkeeping tasks do you want to outsource?
Are you looking for a bookkeeping service provider that can handle only part of your bookkeeping work while you maintain the rest in-house? If this is the case, you can outsource a portion of the bookkeeping process, such as income and expense tracking, accounts receivable, accounts payable, inventory management and tracking, payroll processing, financial reporting, and much more. However, most firms outsource their overall bookkeeping procedures since it lowers the burden of managing full-time workers and maintaining the accounting.
- 3. What is your set budget for the bookkeeping task?
You must know how much you can spend on your bookkeeping activity. Always consider the salaries of bookkeepers, overhead costs on the employees, infrastructure, software cost, and a few more hidden costs are involved in conducting the bookkeeping process internally. Ensure that you know your budget to compare it with the offering of a bookkeeping services provider. The great thing about outsourcing bookkeeping services is that there are various payment plans. You can opt for monthly flat fees depending on your requirements or even a per-transaction fee-based billing model.
- 4. Which bookkeeping software are you using or selected?
The bookkeeping software you use is of utmost importance as your service provider needs to be well versed with the software. If you have chosen not bookkeeping software for yourself, your service providers will recommend reliable and efficient software to meet your business needs. If they believe a particular accounting software is the best fit, ask for a list of reasons and examples. This will help them explain their confidence in its abilities and why it’s an excellent choice for your business needs.
- 5. How much time can you dedicate to bookkeeping?
2 / 2Time is a vital resource, and it is critical to know how much time you can put into your bookkeeping process. Even when you outsource, you need to put in some time to monitor work done by your service provider. So you need to know how much time you can dedicate to your bookkeeping. There are many types of bookkeeping service packages available, each tailored to a specific industry. Make sure you know what each one entails and how much time it will take you to do your bookkeeping efficiently every day. Remember, the less time you can dedicate to your bookkeeping, the more you must be careful while selecting the right bookkeeping services provider. Because in that case, you must have the best service providers that require minimal guidance from your end and commit zero mistakes that might require time to fix.
Once you have the answer to all these questions, now is the time for you to check out a few factors about your bookkeeping service provider –
- 1. What are their services offering?
Look into their service offering, prices, and coverage carefully because if you pick the wrong one, you can be in a mess. Make sure they provide everything you need before signing up for them so that there are no unpleasant surprises.
- 2. Have they served businesses of your industry?
If your bookkeeping service provider has prior industry expertise, it’s a plus. You may choose someone who currently has clients or has previously worked with clients from the same industry. This way, rather than briefing them on your industry-specific needs, you will be able to concentrate only on your business’s demands.
- 3. What does their client portfolio look like?
Make a list of your bookkeeping service provider’s clients, and research their experiences. This will enable you to figure out the level of expertise your service provider has. The list should comprise of high-quality clients.
- 4. What is their reporting structure?
You can ask for a sample report and see how well their reporting style suits you. If not, you can specify a different reporting method and structure. Working on similar reports will help you streamline your bookkeeping process and avoid any confusion.
- 5. How are the reviews by their client?
The current clients’ rate of satisfaction is an essential indicator of the service’s quality. Examining a few online reviews and gathering data will provide you with a good insight into the services providers’ efficiency.
- 6. Confidentiality terms:
Financial departments deal with a lot of sensitive data, and if these are made public, it may do your firm harm strongly. It is critical to check with the service provider about the safety measures to safeguard its clients’ data.
Hiring a bookkeeping service provider for your business is not easy. It takes time to find the service provider who fits your business need. First, you have to conduct thorough online research or ask for recommendations from people you trust. One must conduct proper research and analyze the pro and cons of each provider and then finalize a provider which helps you with all your business requirements. Once you complete this step, you will be able to see drastic changes in the functioning of your accounts department.