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5 Ways Outsourced Accounting for Small Business Can Help with the Accountants Shortage

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It seems that most companies and small business have experienced some fall out from “The Great Resignation.” At the end of January 2024 there were almost 9 million job openings and 6.6% of them were in professional services . That makes for a competitive hiring market. Making matters worse for small business is the growing accountants shortage and the effect this can have on on your financials.

Related Read: 4 Ways to Improve Employee Retention Strategy

Many companies are trying to get creative with business operations and staffing, and what better way to do this than outsourcing?

When small business owners think outsourcing, they often think of overseas solutions, but there are now a number of U.S.-based options for outsourcing marketing, accounting and other core departments of business operations.

Advice from CXOs on outsourcing

We asked over 30 CXOs what their number one piece of advice was when it came to outsourcing, and the resounding message was: start small, but think big. Eventually, your outsourced functions should be strategic partners for your business.

Peter Lewis, founder of Strategic Pete, points out that, “by outsourcing critical but non-core functions such as accounting, marketing, and IT, we’ve been able to dedicate more focus and resources to our primary mission – empowering CEOs through effective coaching. This shift towards leveraging external expertise has enabled us to enhance operational efficiency and innovate more freely in our core service offerings.

Since we began this approach, we’ve observed a notable acceleration in our business growth, quantified by a 35% increase in revenue over the past year. This growth directly correlates with our decision to outsource, which has not only optimized our costs but also improved our service quality and delivery times.”

Peter Lewis, Strategic Pete

“Begin with a smaller, less critical function to understand how outsourcing works and to build your confidence in managing external teams. It’s crucial to set clear, measurable goals and expectations from the outset and to view your outsourcing partners as an integral part of your team, not just external vendors.”

Peter Lewis, Strategic Pete

With improved reporting and more efficient operations, outsourced management accounting offers a competitive advantage and ultimately a promising solution to the accountants shortage.

Which leads me to how outsourced accounting for small business can help.

5 ways outsourced accounting for small business can help the accountants shortage

1). Your back-office is managed by someone else

Turnover is no longer your problem. It’s up to the outsourced accounting company you hired to replace a bookkeeper if they resign. Everyone is spending a lot on hiring right now, so if you can outsource accounting that takes workload off HR. Your HR team can focus on hiring for other departments, instead of worrying about the 300,000 accountants that have walked away from the profession.

Outsourced accounting for small business comes with many benefits, but some that may have an indirect effect on turnover include:

  • Improving processes
  • Increased efficiency
  • Reliable reporting for more effective management
  • Refocus staff on higher-value tasks; hand off AR and AP tasks

2). On-demand staffing flexibility

Growing even in a recession? Suddenly need to flex up your back-office? Those needs can be met by your outsourced accounting service. We’ve mentioned this idea before, but the great thing about using contracted services is then you can cut business expenses when growing your business. Plus, you’re able to increase capacity when you’re bringing in more revenue or when your financial needs call for more staff.

Additionally, awesome controllers are hard to hang onto in the current market. There are just too many opportunities to be hired as CFOs or other finance executive roles. But if you outsource, you don’t need to worry about them jumping ship to another company.

Similarly, if you hire someone that is not a great controller that can actually be holding your business back. Some prospects have opted to hire in-house, only to realize later they would have more consistency with an outsourced accounting function. By choosing an outsourced accounting service for small business, you’re stabilizing your back office allowing you to focus on other business operations.

5 ways outsourced accounting for small business can help with the great resignation infographic

3). Outsourced accounting for small business is a cost-savings  

At a fraction of the cost of a full-time employee, outsourcing your accounting offers access to a team of accounting experts with cross-industry experience.  With the deadly combination of the Great Resignation and volatile market that has some small businesses cutting costs, outsourced accounting services can offer a 20-30% savings compared to an in-house finance team. Learn more about our outsourced accounting pricing tiers here.

Related Read: Outsourced Accounting Services Cost & Other Common Questions

4). Tap into a pool of contractors that have a skill set outside your expertise.

By choosing an outsourced accounting service to manage your back office you automatically gain a team of professionals with cross-industry experience and skills they can call on that may not be your expertise. By working with multiple companies at once they can offer transferable skills to your business using current and real-life experience.

5). Automation to improve efficiency and workflow.

Speaking of AR and AP tasks… With outsourced accounting services you can automate error-prone, monotonous AP processes that drain employee’s energy and time. Accounting tasks like invoicing and customer payment reminders no longer need to be a manual task. Plus, by automating these repetitive tasks you lower the chance of human error and simultaneously build internal controls around risks like expense report fraud.  

Now that you have 5 great reasons to opt for outsourced accounting for small business you can worry less about the accountants shortage affecting your back office and focus more on business development and business-planning for a recession. Ready to get started? Contact us to learn how.

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