Have you heard of client accounting services (CAS)? CAS are accounting and bookkeeping tasks that customers normally perform themselves. Outsourcing these essential tasks to outside partners allows clients to unburden the daily workload of internal staff, without compromising accuracy or compliance.
Client accounting services plans are generally customized for each customer based on their unique business needs. A customized plan will typically include one or more of the following services.
- Bank account reconciliation
- Journal and general ledger reconciliation
- Post-closing financial statement creation
- Payroll processing – including W2s and 1099s
- Industry-specific budgeting and forecasting
- Capital investment project planning
- Account analysis
- Routine, compliance, and forensic auditing
- Budget comparisons:
- Working budget
- Operating budget
- Revenue budget
- Variable cost budget
- Master budget
- Actual vs working budget
- Outsourced Chief Financial Officer (CFO) or /Comptroller services
Client accounting services contracts may include temporary, full-time, part-time, and/or on-demand partnerships with remote accountants. Many CPAs are joining outsourcing professionals to enhance their current service plans.
Here's what you need to know about adding outsourced accounting services to your practice before deciding if this option is right for you.
Types of Accounting Client Services
There are several types of accounting client services defined by their proximity to a company requesting service.
This type of service is generally located in another country far away from the company's operational centers. Some examples of regions a US company may hire include, Southeast Asia, Central, and South America, India, and the Philippines. Outsourcing accounting tasks to foreign companies are typically less expensive than other outsourcing options. However, sometimes there are language and cultural barriers that make communication less efficient and the long-term reliability of the offshore options is often not the strongest.
Onshore Accounting Client Services
Many US companies prefer to partner with a regional or national outsourcing firm to manage their accounting tasks. This may be a more expensive option, but the convenience factor and accessibility to in-person consultations are important for many business leaders. And, while onshore options are more expensive, partnering with a remote accounting team can still save many companies up to 40% compared to utilizing an internal team.
Most Common Benefits of CAS Partnerships
Every organization has a unique business model and workflow challenges. Modern technology has enhanced communication and collaboration exponentially over the past few years. So, whether your company prefers a partner that is in close proximity to your headquarters or prefers using a foreign agency to assume accounting tasks, the benefits are numerous.
Some specific tasks the client accounting service team may assume include:
- Preparing monthly, quarterly, and annual balance sheets, operating statements, and cash flow reports to ensure leaders have an accurate overview of the company's financial health.
- Providing real-time bookkeeping services that allow business leaders to get an up-to-date snapshot of the company's health via online reporting tools, empowering leaders to make decisions on financial status at any point in time.
- Supporting internal teams with accounting advice about technology upgrades and policies that strengthen security and compliance, enabling companies to reduce financial risks.
- Managing and enforcing compliance standards so every transaction meets or exceeds internal and external benchmarks.
- Tracking and reporting trends that inform buying and selling decisions, resulting in cost savings and improved competitive position.
- Overseeing in-house bookkeeping teams to ensure internal staff is well-trained and well-equipped to provide high-quality work products.
- Auditing accounts to identify data entry errors, duplicate postings, and fraudulent activities, improving accuracy throughout the accounting department.
When you partner with an outsourced accounting services firm, your company positions itself for growth and prosperity. Having a dedicated team of highly-skilled bookkeepers and accountants on your team means your clients' accounting data is always recorded in real-time and accurately. You can grow your business without hiring new in-house workers, and reduce current operating expenses.
And, once you set up your clients' accounts, they immediately start working to reduce your internal workload and stress. Build client confidence, improve efficiency and boost profits. Imagine tax time without the constant push to get clients to provide their records. And, when you get those records, how much easier would tax time be knowing those records were accurate and organized?
At the end of the day, adding this new service line benefits the CPA office team and your clients. Learn more about adding CAS to your company today by reaching out to AccountingDepartment.com.