Thought Leadership from the Leaders in Virtual Accounting and Bookkeeping Services

Four Surprising Benefits of Outsourcing Bookkeeping

Posted by Bill Gerber on Fri, Oct 24, 02014

Bookkeeping is a critical part of the daily operations of your small business, but it can also place a large strain on you and your staff. After all, a single bookkeeping mistake could end up being financially disastrous, and it takes a lot of time, knowledge and effort to ensure that everything is properly maintained. With this in mind, many people make the decision to outsource their bookkeeping to our trained professionals, and it is also possible to utilize the services of one of our bookkeepers on a full-time basis. This can be especially beneficial for a solopreneur, but small businesses of all sizes can take advantage of the smooth functionality, timely service, integrity and accurate reporting that is associated with outsourcing bookkeeping.

Four Surprising Benefits of Making the Decision to Outsource Your Bookkeeping

1. You Can Finally Enjoy the Weekends Again

Business owners who take on the bookkeeping aspects of their company often find themselves working seven days a week in order to keep up with everything. Fortunately, you can alleviate this stress from your daily life by outsourcing your bookkeeping. This will allow you to be able to actually experience a sunny Saturday afternoon instead of spending it inside of your home office.

2. Reclaim Some of Your Business Space

Bookkeeping on-site is something that definitely requires a dedicated space, and it also makes it difficult to fully embrace a completely paperless environment. Outsourcing will give you the opportunity to finally make the switch to a completely electronic office, and this will free up at least 100 square feet of your office space. The possibilities for this space are endless and could even include a new office gym.

3. Improve Your Personal Relationships

As previously mentioned, outsourcing your bookkeeping needs will make it easier for you to take time off during the weekend. Additionally, you could actually have time to make it home for dinner with your family or to squeeze in lunch dates with your significant other. No matter how much your spouse or partner understands and supports your business goals, it is still imperative for you to make time for them on a regular basis. Due to this, the cost of outsourcing your bookkeeping could very well be outweighed by the personal gains in your relationship.

4. You Can Catch Up on Your Sleep

Every solopreneur and small business owner feels burned out from time to time, and they have also experienced the unpleasant sensation of waking up in the middle of the night with the feeling that something was not completed properly. A lot of these concerns are based on their company's financial data. Therefore, you should consider turning this aspect of your business over to a highly skilled professional so that you can finally get a good night's sleep and get rid of the bags under your eyes.

As you can see, there are many viable reasons to outsource your bookkeeping. When you combine the previously listed benefits with important perks such as scalability options and having access to top bookkeeping systems, it becomes easy to understand why so many other small businesses have already made the switch.

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Tags: outsourced accounting services, bookkeeping services

Complete Controller Checklist for Small Businesses

Posted by Dennis Najjar on Thu, Oct 23, 02014

As the owner of a small business, you've probably been getting by with piece-parting your financial and accounting tasks to various members of your organization. You may even be outsourcing some of the work. However it's being done, odds are that it's not being handled in a centralized way. In the early stages of getting a business off the ground, this approach makes perfect sense. As your company gains more solid footing and starts growing and expanding, however, this strategy will probably start to backfire. You're likely to be in a state of perpetual confusion about the financial status of your business, and that's a precarious position. Sound familiar? If so, it may be time to hire a controller.

What are Controller Services?

To understand what controller services are, it's helpful to understand what a controller is. According to Investopedia, a controller is "[an] individual who has responsibility for all accounting-related activities within a firm." In larger organizations, a controller may report to the head of the accounting or finance department. In a small business like yours, however, a controller would report directly to the CEO. Think of a controller as the go-to person for all accounting- and finance-related tasks.

With that in mind, then, controller services encompass the tasks that a controller is typically expected to perform. All too often, small business owners assume they can go without a controller. If anything, though, a controller is even more indispensable to a small company. As the owner of a small business, you need to stay abreast of where your company stands financially. When everything is scattered all over the place, getting a clear idea of the big picture is pretty much impossible. Imagine how much easier it would be to be kept up to date by a single person who is responsible for overseeing your company's financial and accounting activities. If that sounds appealing, it's time to sign up for controller services.

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Tags: Small Business Advice and Tips, bookkeeping services, controller services, accounting services

3 Reasons Outsourced Accounting Is Not A Trend

Posted by Kris Merritt on Mon, Oct 20, 02014

I sat down, under the guidance of our marketing department, to write a piece on “The Trend Toward Outsourced Accounting Services.” It just didn’t feel right, though. Several years ago that title would have been accurate. But U.S. businesses have been moving “toward” outsourced accounting for a while. Now we’re there.

I’d even hesitate to call outsourced accounting a “trend,” because that word implies a sharp incline and eventual fade into oblivion. On the other hand, outsourced accounting is here to stay. As I turned to trusted industry sources and analysts, I found the figures to back me up.

The information we’re about to share shows that outsourced accounting is not a trend, at all, but a zeitgeist, driven by the growth of cloud-based accounting solutions, greater cost-consciousness on the part of business owners, and a growing comfort with outsourcing business processes in general.

1. Outsourced accounting shows steady market growth.
The global multi-process finance and accounting outsourcing (FAO) market grew by 10% to reach $4.3 billion (Annualized Contract Value) in 2012, according to a report by the Everest Research Group. (http://www.everestgrp.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/FAO-Annual-Report-Executive-Summary-May-2013.pdf)  Ten percent growth may not sound like a lot and, in fact, it’s not an exceptionally high number. However, this rate of growth is indicative of steady and gradual growth that shows true staying power, not a flash-in-the-pan trend.

2. Businesses are happy with outsourced accounting value and results, year after year.
A substantial portion of that 10 percent growth (65%) came from clients who started using outsourced accounting in previous year and have continued, extending their contracts with their service providers.

This, more than anything, shows that outsourced accounting is not just a trend. It’s a way of life for many business owners today.

3. Business owners evaluate cost plus value proposition when choosing outsourced accounting services.
Business owners originally turned to virtual bookkeeping and outsourced accounting because of lower costs. But as the industry evolved, and virtual accounting firms began providing greater value than in-house bookkeepers could, business owners began evaluating their choices in virtual accounting based on much more than just cost. This is an indication of a mature marketplace.

Outsourced accounting may save business owners money, http://www.accountingdepartment.com/blog/bid/348887/Traditional-Vs-Virtual-Accounting-All-The-Expertise-At-Half-The-Cost especially when you look at the overhead saved by not hiring in-house employees. But the true benefit in an outsourced accounting firm is the value the company provides, offering bookkeeping, accounting and financial controllership services, all with the convenience and security of cloud-based accounting.

The latest Everest Group report shows we’re not the only ones who understand these important benefits. Are you ready to join the “trend” of businesses that outsource bookkeeping services through a virtual accounting firm?

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Tags: accounting strategies, small business bookkeeping, bookkeeping services

How to Read Your Company Snapshot in Quickbooks Online

Posted by Kris Merritt on Fri, Oct 17, 02014

If you are using QuickBooks Online for your accounting and bookkeeping, you should learn about the Company Snapshot feature and how to use it. The Snapshot feature gives you the opportunity to understand how your company is doing overall, and what you need to change for the future, whether you handle your own accounting or you enlist the help of an online bookkeeping service.

Major Sections of the Company Snapshot

The Company Snapshot is a panel that is updated in real time with all of your company's information that's entered into QuickBooks. The program parses the information and presents it in an easy-to-read overview that's invaluable to a busy business owner. The areas represented on this panel include income trends, expense charts, the balances of all accounts associated with Quickbooks, the breakdown of income sources, vendors owed money, expense line items and accounts, top grossing customers and vendors, top inventory, and any accounting reminders, income and expense comparison to last year.

If you don't have full administrator access to QuickBooks, the data that you do have access to is shown within the snapshot. You or your employees who are not authorized for all sections are restricted to the accounting information in the other accessible sections. If you don't need all of the information the snapshot shows, you can customize this page. 

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Tags: Bookkeeping Best Practices, bookkeeping services, accounting services, quickbooks tips

9 Top Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs

Posted by Bill Gerber on Tue, Oct 14, 02014

Starting and growing a business requires a mix of guts, inspiration, dedication and know-how. As providers of bookkeeping services for small businesses up to $25 million, we have the privilege of seeing firsthand how many of our clients have mastered this formula to drive their businesses to success. We're proud to supply our clients with all the knowledge and support they need to master financial management--but we recognize that there are additional resources out there that help provide additional education on other areas of business development. As such, in addition to our own blog for accounting and bookkeeping information, we've rounded up some of our personal favorites in the small business blogosphere to help small businesses find the information they're looking for, no matter what the topic of expertise.

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Tags: Small Business Advice and Tips, small business tips

What A Grant Means for the Future of Bookkeeping

Posted by Bill Gerber on Thu, Oct 09, 02014

We typically write extensively on best practices in bookkeeping services, new trends in accounting technology or even simple "how-to's" for operating and managing your accounting programs. However, today we're changing it up a little bit to talk about something we're actively working on--and we hope you can help us. If you don't have time read further, please just go vote for us. Otherwise, read on to see how we're about to disrupt the bookkeeping industry (but, we still need your help).

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Tags: small business

Top 5 Ways Outsourcing Accounting Helps Startups

Posted by Bill Gerber on Tue, Oct 07, 02014

Are you a startup entrepreneur just learning which services you will need to run your business more smoothly? The trend today is to outsource many of the tasks not related to your company’s core competency – that is, the activity that will ultimately drive revenue and grow your company - or, the reason you started your business in the first place. This includes outsourcing everything from marketing and design, to sales, IT, and administrative tasks.

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Tags: accounting strategies, outsourced accounting services, bookkeeping services, startups

How Billing with Quickbooks Online Can Improve Cash Flow

Posted by Kris Merritt on Thu, Oct 02, 02014

Every bookkeeper knows that when a company has adequate cash flow, it provides multiple opportunities to lower operating costs. Early payment discounts offered by vendors can be taken advantage of. Lines of credit are accessed less often, decreasing their related interest expense. Cash purchases of assets can save money on financing. A healthy cash flow also creates a strong financial statement for your business when negotiating rates with your banker.

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Tags: accounting strategies, accounting software, quickbooks tips, quickbooks training

Accounting Software Updates: Get to Know QuickBooks 2015

Posted by Dennis Najjar on Mon, Sep 29, 02014

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Tags: accounting software, accounting services

What You Need to Know: Recent Updates for QuickBooks Online

Posted by Kris Merritt on Thu, Sep 25, 02014

There is no denying that managing the financial end of a business takes some effort. Thanks to Intuit and QuickBooks Online, this otherwise daunting task has been simplified by top accounting software. The most recent updates applied to the accounting site involve time-saving modifications. Whether you’re a fan of the brand or new to the QuickBooks world, you’ll likely benefit from these changes.

Friendlier Usability and Interface

One of the most basic adjustments to the service is the new keyboard shortcut. You can now tap the escape key when you want to close your transaction forms. This will close any expense pages or invoices so that you can view the screen you started with. A small tweak to the money bar adds to the convenience, allowing you to view a clear time frame for the presented data.

Other alterations include visual refinements that simply clean up the look of certain pages. Larger icons, a more prominent help button and subtle color changes improve the visibility of the menus. These seemingly minute details make navigation from task to task easier and more straightforward, which ultimately saves time as well.

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Tags: Bookkeeping Best Practices, small business bookkeeping, accounting software, quickbooks tips

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