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How Initor Global helps accountants outsource services effectively

21st Jun 2024
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Initor Global UK provides premium outsourced services to UK accountants and businesses.

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Accountants spend years building a profitable business, investing time and resources in establishing a unique service for clients.  With increased competition across the industry for new customers, and challenges to retain clients, accountants are looking at new ways of deliver services more effectively. Outsourcing services or recurring tasks allows accountants to build capacity to grow their business and increase resilience to competition.

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Initor Global UK

Preparation

Choosing which services to outsource and when, along with the right outsource supplier, is essential to implementing an offshore solution successfully. Undertaking a critical review of internal resources and comparing to the capacity needed to deliver work for existing clients and future growth will quickly identify shortfalls which need to be managed. Equally important is ensuring the outsource supplier has the skills and expertise needed to deliver the work which cannot be completed in-house. Obtaining evidence of accountancy qualifications or software accreditations and references from existing customers the offshore supplier works with will help provide the assurances the onshore accountant needs.

Partnership working

Undertaking a review of internal systems and processes can help integrate an outsource supplier to an accountant’s operations. Client data will need to be accessed using remote login arrangements or shared through secure portals. Workflows will need to be updated to track the progress of work outsourced and delivery in accordance with the terms agreed. Communications with clients can be automated to let them know when work is completed, or when additional information or authorisation is needed.

Most outsource suppliers will prepare working papers in a format agreed by the onshore accountant. Asking the offshore supplier to provide any advice or suggestions for improvement in working papers, or if they have a better format, is a good way to build relationships between the onshore and offshore teams.

Communication

When outsourcing services for the first time, accountants may overlook the importance of regular communications with the offshore team. Regular video calls between teams will help ensure both parties understand their responsibilities and the role they play in delivering work. If there are difficulties at any point in the working relationship, these should be communicated openly and without blaming either party.

People management

When planning for outsourcing, accountants need to evaluate the impact on strategies for recruitment and retention and people development. Individuals may require training in their new roles to understand any new processes and procedures when introducing an outsourced supplier. As careers progress, more specialised training may be needed, for example where accountants take on more advisory or specialist tax work.

Client experience

Managing clients can be resource intensive, and mistakes can be made where expectations about the services to be delivered for the agreed fee differ significantly. An outsourced accountant can manage the flow of communication with a client for the work they are responsible for, enabling the UK accountant to focus on adding value to the client relationship. The best outsourced suppliers will adapt to the changing demands of UK accountants and their clients.

Data security

When outsourcing work, the UK accountant should always seek confirmation about any GDPR or data security credentials stated by an offshore accountant. They will also need to understand the operational procedures established by the offshore accountant to ensure data security and complete a risk assessment accordingly. 

Internal policies and procedures will need to be updated to cover the tasks undertaken by the offshore accountant and the nature of data processed. Some UK accountants decide the offshore accountant should see only limited amounts or anonymised client data; others decide the offshore accountant needs full access to client information to work effectively. Including the offshore accountant in any training or staff can helps ensure awareness of the continuing importance of data security and the action required in the event a data breach occurs, including who to report the incident to.

Conclusion

With pressures on UK accountants to recruit and retain talent likely to continue for the foreseeable future, using an offshore supplier to build capacity and resilience is increasingly popular. Most UK accountants looking to add new clients or increase the range of services they offer see outsourcing as the most effective way to deliver business growth. Accountants can ensure they implement outsourcing effectively by following some simple rules to deliver the outcomes they need.

At Initor Global, we have been providing offshore services to accountants since 2006. Our customers include sole proprietors, as well as small and medium sized UK Accountancy Practices. Our outsourced tax, accounting and payroll services are suitable for all client engagements - from sole traders and micro businesses to SMEs and large companies.

If you are an accountant looking to outsource services, increase margins and help your client’s thrive, you can book a video call with one of Initor Global’s expert advisors using this link or send an email to [email protected]