When you outsource accounting to us, it stays in the UK
People sometimes suggest I should send outsourced bookkeeping and payroll work overseas, to India or the Philippines. I don’t do that, and I’m not going to. That’s not because I buy into some negative stereotype about outsourcing abroad. There are plenty of highly-qualified accounting professionals outside of the UK who would have no trouble producing accurate books and processing payroll effectively.
It would certainly come with the benefit of lower costs – and there’s nothing us accountants like more than efficiency.
But for me, it’s not about finding the cheapest option. It’s about quality. And for several reasons, I think it’s better to keep sensitive information here in the UK.
Why take the risk?
When other accounting firms outsource work to me, they’re handing over important financial information about themselves, their own clients, and the employees of their clients. They’re trusting me with data that could cause serious damage if it found its way into the wrong hands. Not only could it seriously impact them and their clients financially if that information ended up being misused, but it could hurt their reputation in the long term. And although there are outsourcing companies with strict security procedures in place, there’s no getting around the fact that adding an extra degree of separation gives you less control over how that information is handled. It basically creates more risk.
It’s important to me that I know exactly how my clients’ information is being handled, and that it’s stored on systems I trust. By keeping my outsourced work in the UK, I can make sure that’s the case.
Keeping communications seamless
The past couple of years have taught us you don’t always need to be in the same room as someone to work together well. Many of us are comfortable working remotely, keeping in touch through online chat or carrying out meetings via video call. That’s opened up some exciting new possibilities in terms of flexible and hybrid working. But it’s also shown us the limitations of communicating this way. Most of us have experienced so-called ‘Zoom fatigue’ or struggled with a laggy video call, and if we’re totally honest, it’s nice to have a break from it now and then. Sometimes, there’s no real replacement for meeting up in person and talking things through face to face – without having to constantly worry about interrupting each other, or accidentally putting yourself on mute.
When working with a team overseas, you’ve got the usual challenges of remote communication, then you’re adding a time difference and sometimes a language barrier to the mix. That can often end up being more trouble than it’s worth. To me, smooth and easy communication isn’t just a nice-to-have. It’s a vital part of a high-quality outsourced service.
It’s important the businesses and accountancy firms I work with can contact me at any time and expect a swift reply. And if they’re in the area and want to talk about their work in person, my door’s always open.
Get in touch to find out how outsourcing can make your accounting firm more profitable.