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6 Qualities to Look For in an Outsourced Accounting Firm

Looking to outsource your business' accounting functions?

Accounting is a crucial business process, and no business can do without it. That being said, it requires time and expertise to be perfect and beneficial to your business. Fortunately, hiring in-house accountants isn’t your only option. You can outsource the service to an outsourced accounting firm and have them deal with all your business’ accounting, bookkeeping, and financial processes.

However, hiring an accounting firm that’s a good fit for your business can be a challenging process. How do you find the right firm from the numerous accounting firms available?  To help you navigate that decision knowledgeably, here are six qualities a great outsourced accounting firm should have.

1. Expansive Service Offerings

While it’s an excellent idea to outsource accounting services to a firm that offers a specific accounting service, it may be wise to consider a full-range firm as well. Chances are you don’t just need help with basic accounting duties, and dealing with many firms for different services can be challenging and confusing.

However, having all your services in one place can be beneficial, cost-effective, and easy to manage. The firm should be able to provide services for all your needs, such as bookkeeping, cash flow management, payroll, account receivables and payables, and others. They should also offer other services, such as budgeting, key performance indicator (KPI) assistance, strategic planning, and forecasting.

Business service companies, such as Razor Group, have a wide range of advanced business services. You have an option to pick the range of services you need from them.

2. Industry Specific Experience

Each sector has its unique accounting needs and challenges. You’ll want to outsource your accounting needs to a firm with expertise and experience handling accounts for similar businesses as yours. They understand your business’ unique accounting requirements and can handle them perfectly. 

You can get such information from their portfolio and references from their clients. Here are the key areas to examine:

  • Do they have clients whose businesses are the same size as yours?
  • Are some of their clients in the same industry as you?
  • Do they have the capacity to grow with your business?

The answers to these three questions will tell you if an accounting firm can handle your business needs. An accounting firm with industry-specific expertise expands the scope and quality of services they can offer your business.

3. Standard Data Security Measures

Accounting and financial data are quite sensitive and should be handled with utmost confidentiality and care. A good accounting firm has a reliable and robust security system in place. Their security systems should be good enough to put your data breach worries to rest. They should also be transparent on how they use the data and levels of access.

Furthermore, ensure you talk with them about their non-disclosure policy as well before outsourcing their accounting services. You will definitely want to make sure the outsourced accounting firm you hire has data security measures in place.

4. Technology Driven Services

Technology plays a significant role in business accounting today. Accounting automation software helps to reduce human error, as well as considerably reduce the time taken to do specific processes. An excellent quality to look for in a great outsourced accounting firm is the ability to create a good balance between accounting and technology

They should be able to leverage technology to keep up with daily accounting needs. With technology-driven services, they can offer you valuable benefits, including deeper financial insights and faster account reporting.

5. Effective and Timely Communication

Effective communication is crucial when outsourcing business services. If you’re having difficulty raising your concerns and questions at the consultative meeting, there’s little chance for a good relationship. You’ll need a firm that keeps you up-to-date at all times. You should always be aware of your financial standing and progress.  

The outsourced accounting firm needs to have a dedicated accounting team that’s reachable and effectively communicates all developments. Better yet, they should have a cloud-based system where you can keep tabs on the accounts and receive your reports. Otherwise, you risk being left out, unaware of the status of your accounts, and unable to reach anyone with your concerns.

6. Good References And Reputation

Prior to hiring an outsourced accounting firm, you must conduct due diligence and find out what kind of accounting firm they are. You should look into characteristics such as their management style and office culture. In addition to this, speak to their existing and previous clients, particularly those in the same industry as yours. This will help you assess and get a report card of their services. 

If the feedback you get in this process is good, you can consider doing business with them

Qualities of a Great Outsourced Accounting Firm – Summary

A good accounting firm should provide business services that align with your business requirements and objectives. They should be client-centric and focus on delivering regular and customized services. They should be able to focus on your business accounting needs and offer the appropriate solutions. Carefully assess and watch out for these specific qualities and others that fit your needs.

It’s a challenging task, but if you carefully identify the essential qualities you need in your business, you’ll end up with a suitable choice.

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