While BOSS works hard to make integrating your outsourced accountants as easy and painless as possible, it’s not quite so simple as flipping a light switch. There are two main items you’ll want to prepare your business for – the virtual accountants themselves, and the growth that comes with them.
Luckily prepping your firm for your overseas accountants can automatically prep you for growth. In both cases, your main concern is going to revolve around your processes – the systems you use to get work done.
The reason why we suggest codifying your processes ahead of time is twofold. First, if your work doesn’t have a system as such, any workflow blockages you have now are going to be magnified tenfold when you add your outsourced accountants to the mix.
The second reason to set up systems is that, while your overseas workers are going to be of benefit in just about every aspect of your services, you’ll be able to identify where they’ll help you the most.
Set Up Your Systems
Here are the steps we suggest you take to get your systems set up and running smoothly.
Chart a File’s Progress.
Get your team together and have everyone who touches a file in a particular process (for example, company tax returns) to identify how they participate in that file’s progress. Ideally you want the best person for any one section to do this for you – the right people for the right job.
A key point to remember about writing down your processes is that none of this is absolutely set in stone. It’s important to remain flexible so you can react to opportunities to fine tune as they emerge.
Once you and your team have all contributed their part in the progress of any one type of filing document the process.
Now you’ll have a clear method to both teach new talent (including your outsourced accountants) how your system works and you’ll be able to see at a glance how far along any one file has come.
Clarify the Links in Your Chain.
Now that you have your systems set down, you can go a step further and clarify the process of any one part of a system.
You can write this process in a document, or better yet, grab yourself some screen capture software (e.g. the Snipping tool in Windows or Jing) and/or video capture software (like Jing) and have your star talent in that area do a run-through on a file to show how they get things done.
You’ll now have a visual record of how individual pieces of your overall processes work that you can use to train both new in-house staff and your outsourced accountants.
Have an Administrator Help.
While this step isn’t strictly necessary, once your business starts to grow we find it really helps to have someone in-house gather data and be a point of contact for things an in-house accountant isn’t required for. This can be a Receptionist or current Administrator (For more detailed info see this article)
Set Yourself Up For Growth
Even if you’re not prepping your business for the growth that comes with shifting your services to outsourced accountants, the above steps are going to help you identify spots in your systems that tend to get bogged down and hold up work.
And if you’re making the leap to utilizing outsourced accountants you’re going to find documenting your processes makes the changeover a breeze.