ISSUE | 15 | APRIL 2022
What our customers say. A tête-à-tête with Phil Bessant. Phil has worked with four outsourcing providers in the past. He was happy with none. He shares that promises were made but were not kept in timing and fees: the typical problem-big promises but all talk. "I never got a settled service before Outbooks."
A bookkeeper's worst nightmare is data coming in bits and pieces. Imagine getting another set of data when the books are ready to be sent. It is like getting a flat try before going for a first date. You have to start all over again. Double bookkeeping is what bookkeepers hate to do.
A Deloitte 2020 outsourcing survey reveals that cost reduction is back to being the top driving force behind outsourcing decisions. But before you dive into the world of outsourcing, it is essential to know the actual cost of operations at various levels like process, product, and activity.
DESK OF MD
Accounting firms have been outsourcing tax preparation for many years, but many misconceptions remain. These myths were shortlisted throughout Outbooks' journey of more than ten years. Time to set the record straight! This article has tried to bust top myths associated with international tax and accounting outsourcing.
If I outsource tax returns offshore, my clients' data won’t be secure.
Robust client data protections and protocols are in place to prevent data breaches. Choose a tax outsourcing provider to protect your information against external and internal risks.
That outsourced returns are of inferior quality has been a significant deterrent to utilizing tax outsourcing services.
Returns prepared by an experienced tax outsourcing provider will be of the same or higher quality than returns prepared by the firm's existing staff.
Loss of control and visibility.
In my career spanning over a decade, one concern has almost always been a part of accounting firms' discussion when deciding whether or not to utilize tax outsourcing as part of their overall tax strategy.
Both the firm and the outsource provider know the status of that return and the expected delivery date. Constant communication is key between the firm and the outsourcing provider.
Offshore staff works in inhuman conditions and are underpaid.
Employees have benefited from higher salaries. The wages of Indian BPO workers are nearly double the average wages in other sectors of the Indian economy, according to the study titled "Offshoring and Working Conditions in Remote Work."
We value our employees and provide them comfortable workspaces, train them, reward them and work towards changing their lives. Since the pandemic, 300+ employees of Outbooks have been working from home. They have laptops and high-quality broadband.
I understand that India and the United Kingdom vary significantly in working culture and employment regulations. At Outbooks, we value our employees and do everything possible to keep them content.
Working with a tax outsourcing provider gives you the ability to get the work done with minimal time and effort from your staff, managers, and partners.
I hope you continue to find the content valuable.
What our customers say?
Phil has worked with four outsourcing providers in the past. He was happy with none. He shares that promises were made but were not kept in timing and fees: the typical problem- big promises but all talk. "I never got a settled service before Outbooks."
In hopes of fixed prices and promised turnaround, he turned to Outbooks.
It's been two years that Outbooks and Phil have been working together. "One point of contact and constant communication is our favourite part of working with Outbooks," says Phil.
Too much back and forth with previous outsourcing providers made Phil's life difficult. "Now, once the work is uploaded, we can forget about it until we get draft accounts back, usually within seven working days," he says.
In his concluding remarks, Phil has a word of advice for those wanting to outsource, "If you haven't tried it, what are you waiting for? The capacity it will give you alone is worth it."
- A bookkeeper's worst nightmare is data coming inbits and pieces. Imagine getting another set of data when the books are ready to be sent. It is like getting a flat tyre before going for a first date. You have to start all over again. Double bookkeeping is what bookkeepers hate to do.
- Outsourcing firms have a checklist for their customers on they want the data to be sent. But as luck would have it, it is ararity to receive data according to the checklist. For instance, at Outbooks, we expect our customers to send a pay-out report and not a simple statement of their GoCardless. The former makes a bookkeeper's life easy when the transfers have been made in bulk and otherwise also.
- While the internet is flooded with the benefits of sales and accounting software integration, our bookkeepers think otherwise. It has only added to their foes and, of course, the scope of work. They now tokeep an eye if the integration hasn't stoppedbecause if they don't, they will miss out on sales entries.
- This has to be the top worse nightmare-someone scribblingon your notes. Often, clients or end customers come and make changes themself in the excel sheet, which doesn't go well with bookkeepers.
Strategies To Deal WithChallenges
- Follow up till one gets the required information.
- Understand client's problem and offer solutions
- To give read-only access to customers.
- Use positive vocabulary and listen to their story patiently.
"There is no better employer than Outbooks if you have the hunger to grow."
What are you most proud of during your journey with Outbooks?
It is my intent always to deliver on time. If there is a delay for any reason, I don't hesitate to communicate the same. Once a client emailed saying, "We wouldn't be where we're at without you."
How has your career grown since you joined Outbooks?
I joined Outbooks four years ago as an Assistant Manager no client access. Fast forward to today, I am looking after 12 accountants/customers who send me work for 100s of their clients. It is a great feeling when I look back from where I started.
What would you say to someone considering a career with Outbooks?
If you are willing to work hard and smart, there is no looking back at Outbooks.
What would you like to say to your leadership team?
The leadership always backs my decisions which has provided a great boost to my confidence. I am always heard at work which helped me improve my managerial skills.
Where do you see yourself in the next 4 years??
I look forward to working here with a promising attitude. It is important for me to synchronize my targets with the objectives of this company. I am confident that the next four years will be marked with milestones for me as well as the organization.
How Much Outsourcing
accounting will cost you?
The past decade or so has seen a mammoth growth inoutsourcing.It is no news that businesses outsource various functions like accounting and bookkeeping to savecosts.A Deloitte 2020outsourcingsurvey reveals thatcostreduction is back to being the top driving force behindoutsourcingdecisions.
But before you dive into the world ofoutsourcing,it is essential to know the actual cost of operations at various levels like process, product, and activity.
This article will help you understand the costs included inoutsourcingand how it helps save more.
If you are unaware of the current cost of operations, you will not understand the real beneﬁt of outsourcing.The ﬁrst step to outsourcing is calculating your company's actual cost of operations.
After you know the cost of your operations,the second step would be to dig into outsourcing costs.
How outsourcing companies price their services?
Outbooks has been working with tax and accounting ﬁrms in the UK and small businesses in Australia for over a decade. But still, we get queries on thecost of outsourcing to India.
There are different types of pricing models adopted byoutsourcingcompanies. The differences between them are stark, and each has its pros and cons. Let's take a look at the pricing strategies.
Pricing Strategy #1: Full-time employee (FTE) or
Dedicated resourcing model
As the name suggests, you will have a virtual team/person working solely on your project. The client has complete management control over the team, while theoutsourcingcompany would be responsible for recruitment and administration. The payment is made at the end of every month until completion.
It is the most popular method, and the fee might range from $1,500//month to $2,500/month for a bookkeeper and $2.500/month to $4,000/month for an accountant. Prices vary from supplier to supplier and also due to experience and qualiﬁcations of the staff.
The key beneﬁts of having a full-time outsourcing model are:
- The client can actively participate in the recruitment and hiring process of the team/individual
- If the volume of work is high, this can be cost-effective instead of hourly rates.
- Constant communication between the dedicated account manager and the accountancy practice
- There are fewer chances of cost escalations and thus better budget management.
Pricing Strategy#2 Pay as you go model
An hourly rate is determined by theoutsourcingcompany, which hovers between $15 and $25/hour for accounts and $25 and $40/hour for bookkeeping.
The beneﬁts of this model are:
- Most ﬂexible model where you are not signing up to any ﬁxed costs per month.
- You will be charged on an hourly basis, so a great option when you don't have huge volumes of work.
- There are chances ofcostsexceeding the estimate.
- Very transactional model.
- You may not get the same staff working on the books/accounts every time.
- Administration can be diffi
What is your time worth to you?
We have all heard the phrase time is money but never paid attention to it. Many tools will help you understand how much money your time is worth to you.
When you hire an employee, you spend considerable time training. You can utilize this time in revenue-generating activities.
We have a simple exercise for you. This will surprise you for sure.
We take into account the following costs while hiring a bookkeeper/accountant:
- Bookkeeper's hourly rate
- Health insurancecostsfor bookkeeper/assistant
- Weeks of paid vacation per year
- Overhead (as a % of office space, computer, supplies, line management, training etc)
But what about the cost of your time managing the bookkeeper?
- Hours per week you spend with the bookkeeper/assistant
- Value of your time (not cost)
- Hiring and ongoing training of bookkeeper/assistant
In-house versus outsourcing
We should not forget that hiring in-house is cyclical because every employee eventually moves on.
When anoutsourcingcompany hires for your virtual accounting team, the company is responsible for the cost associated with ﬁnding and retaining qualiﬁed, degreed and certiﬁed accountants or bookkeepers you need.
Going for the cheapestoutsourcingprovider is the biggest mistake while choosing the outsourcing provider. Going cheap with outsourcing could lead to poor quality of work.
Find accurateoutsourcingrates for your accounting needs; get in touch today.
"The climb is the fun part"
We've been a decade in the business, and the journey has always been upward. We have been lucky that way.
The first quarter of 2022 started on an exciting note. 40 new faces joined the Outbooks family, and we expect the total to be around 300 by the end of this year.
On the training part, 33 employees successfully received Xero certification. They are now proficient with the core features of Xero and possess the knowledge and skills needed to serve clients.
We are also hiring specialists to facilitate and supervise training programs for employees.
We are excited to see how this year unfolds.