Virtual Bookkeeping has seen a massive switch over from the traditional in-house teams in the past decade or so. And it isn’t a surprise considering the fact that outsourcing a virtual booking firm has so much to offer as compared to hiring an in-house team(or even doing it themselves). However, a common dilemma that companies often go through while considering a switchover, is how can they trust a bookkeeping firm and especially when financial frauds have become so common, owing to the Internet Revolution.
However, there are many trusted bookkeeping and accounting firms out there that are serving clients all over the world, making a significant positive difference for businesses. All it requires to find one for your business and build trust with a virtual bookkeeping firm is to do research on the offerings and processes of the firm. So if you are a business owner looking for an online bookkeeping firm (or if you are in the business of virtual bookkeeping), consider the below points:
The first step towards trusting a bookkeeping firm is to check out with them if they are using an online accounting software since in today’s age of technology, any firm is still using the old age manual processing, it sounds suspicious. Using Accounting Softwares further eliminates the chances of human error as well as human intervention.
Communication: Communication is essential for maintaining transparency between the business and the outsourced firm. Businesses should set strict communication parameters before hiring an online bookkeeping firm. From day-to-day reporting to weekly reporting, there should be a well-planned and well-executed communication process. Regular communication is core for building a trustworthy relationship and shouldn’t be overlooked.
Team-based: Always consider hiring a team-based firm since giving all the power and control of all your business transactions to a single bookkeeper can backfire since you can’t be sure if s/he is cooking your books behind your back. With a team, each person has a dedicated set of responsibilities and also businesses don’t need to rely on one person’s skill set.
Avoid firms using Commingled Bank Trust Accounts: Client trust accounts are special accounts that accounting firms handle to ensure efficient management of clients’ money. These accounts see to it that the clients’ money is free from being overrun by law offices’ creditors as well as any personal financial problems.
When approaching an accounting and bookkeeping firm businesses should first make sure that their bank trust account is under a separate account and not mixed with other clients’ accounts. This practice allows for a multi-layer protection. Moreover, such accounts receive regular alerts from the bank and thus free from any mismanagement and other discrepancies since the business gets monthly ledger trial balances that can be cross-checked with the accounting firm’s ledger records.
Approval System in place: This is the most important factor companies should consider before trusting an accounting firm. No matter how expert and highly professional the accounting firm is, no process or transaction should go forwards without the company’s approval. Be open to advise but an approval system should always be in place.
Outsourcing an online bookkeeping firm is always a better option rather than exhausting time and money in an in-house team. However, it isn’t easy to trust an outsourced firm by simply letting them into your books. And to make sure you need to consider the above-mentioned points prior to hiring an accounting firm. This practice will ensure that your company isn’t being tricked into any sort of financial fraud, after all, it’s your hard-earned money.