Outsourcing your bookkeeping is one of the best decisions you can make as a business owner. Your time is too valuable to spend it recording transactions and running reports. Engaging a qualified professional lets you spend more time developing new business and planning for the future.
You are depending on your bookkeeper to provide complete and accurate financial information so you can make good business decisions. How do you make sure that’s what you get? By setting expectations. Sounds simple, but articulating expectations is the best way to get things done the way you want them.
Set expectations for your bookkeeper in these four areas to get the results that you need:
- Standard Tasks
- Clarify the tasks and basic skills necessary to meet your needs, such as using accounting systems, analyzing accounting records for errors, and reconciling financial activity.
- Establish a schedule for monthly financial statements and other reporting needed to manage your business.
- Critical Thinking
- You need someone who can focus on the little things and understand how they work together. She or he must be a problem solver, gathering information and developing solutions.
- Make it clear that projects and tasks must be logically prioritized and followed through to completion. Deadlines must be met.
- Two-Way Communication
- If something is not understood, she or he has to be willing to ask for clarification or help. Communication is critical; it is better for the finance person to ask questions, rather than guess.
- You need a finance person who can handle day-to-day issues and who knows when to escalate an issue to you.
- Technical Proficiency
- A 21st-century bookkeeper can conduct a majority of your financial business electronically, including working the bank and other third-party companies to pay bills and receive payments.
- Your bookkeeping solution should be explaining and encouraging the use of technology to save time and money through process automation.
Getting the bookkeeping help you need starts with setting expectations. Then, you’ll be able to get complete and accurate financial information while focusing your time on building your business.