It’s Friday morning and your most experienced employee, who performs many of your accounting functions, tells you that she is giving her two weeks’ notice. Naturally, you panic. The good news is that there are very reasonable, cost beneficial alternatives for this type of situation. Have you considered outsourcing some of your accounting functions?
Outsourcing is defined as obtaining a service from an outside supplier, especially in place of an internal resource. Outsourcing can be a viable option for organizations that have either a temporary or permanent need for assistance. The value that outsourcing brings to an organization is twofold. First, it provides access to knowledgeable individuals who understand your operations and who regularly deal with situations like yours. Secondly, when considering the cost of salaries and benefits, the ability to find qualified personnel, and the risk of taking on new staff, outsourcing is a reasonable cost alternative to hiring a part-time or full-time employee.
Outsourced accounting services can range from entering and processing accounts payable and payroll to general ledger maintenance and budget preparation to annual financial statement preparation. In most situations, these services can be handled by one or two individuals at a fee that is 25 to 30 percent less than having an employee that handles these duties.
As with any change, there is always some fear of the unknown and unfamiliar. How will the governing body view the elimination of a position? Will we ever be able to get that position back into our budget if outsourcing is not a good fit? Logistically, how will the services be accomplished? Will things be handled promptly and on time? Ultimately, proper planning and regular communication are the keys to overcoming these concerns and the cost benefit of outsourcing can far outweigh these perceived challenges.
Consider the benefits of outsourcing some or all of your daily, monthly, quarterly, or annual processes and procedures. Outsourcing provides an opportunity to bring knowledgeable, trained, and experienced professionals to help your organizations with duties that need to be fulfilled but at a nominal cost. In many cases, outsourcing can help save money for your organization. Money that could be used for other, more important, items or services that enable your organization better serve your constituents. So, don’t panic; there are viable alternatives.
For more information on this topic, or to learn how Baker Tilly state and local government specialists can help, contact our team.