Article:

Key factors to consider when deciding to outsource

07 March 2018

At BDO we are seeing the value that we provide to our clients change and grow.  Yes, tax, audit and bookkeeping requirements are key to our offering but these are extending out to embrace areas such as business advisory support and, in particular and for the purposes of this article, outsourcing. 

The context for this shift is important.  Guernsey is home to an eclectic range of businesses at various stages of maturity that share a common difficulty: sourcing appropriately qualified and experienced expertise when they need it most.  

Scarcity of the appropriate professional financial talent can impact on the ability of any business to generate competitive advantage.  With unemployment at a record multi-year low this problem is not due to change in the short term as tensions continue to increase on the labour market.

What indicators might lead a business to think about outsourcing financial processes or particular roles?

 

Access expertise

It may be that recruiting the required talent and developing skills and expertise is not possible at a certain point in time or desirable for commercial reasons. Outsourcing specific accounting roles, from chief financial officer to the full accounts department, to inject the appropriate talent where and at the time when it is most needed, may be preferable.

The choice of partner in any outsourcing relationship is crucial for the long term success of an engagement.  It may be that having a strong command in a particular industry, a well-resourced team at appropriate levels of expertise and/or access to the right accounting systems will be key considerations. 

Our BDODrive services are underpinned by the benefits of a global accounting practice with strong expertise through a rich history in Guernsey’s financial and commercial markets.  Through them, BDO offers a compelling way to access local expertise and support.

 

Increase focus

At some stages in the lifecycle of any business, time spent on administrative workflow such as accounts payable or more strategic functions like budgeting can detract from other priorities which can lead to a range of frustrations and impact on market success.  Outsourcing is an efficient way of accessing expertise flexibly and when it’s needed most. 

In these cases, outsourcing particular pieces of financial workflow has logic.  In choosing to select an outsourcing partner, it’s important to check that their business is of the required scale and employs professionals at the appropriate level of qualification to efficiently cater for your timeframes and requirements across the annual financial cycle of the business. At BDO we marry a wide pool of expert talent with technology, including cloud accounting, to deliver smart working and robust management reporting.

The main reason for outsourcing is to deliver efficiency to business processes.  Selecting a firm that has wide experience of financial processes, procedures, technology and a track record of delivering efficiency may be important areas to think about. 

 

Consistency

Understanding the client approach and focus your partner will take is crucial.  Having a dedicated point of contact who is responsible for your client relationship can provide comfort that you are working with someone who is committed to your business into the long-term. 

Alongside our heritage in Guernsey of over 110 years, BDO has particular expertise with businesses in the commercial, private wealth, funds and insurance sectors of Guernsey’s economy. As an employer of over 75 people we offer consistency and the capability to build valuable familiarity with your business and objectives. 

 

Location

Finally, thinking about where your provider needs to be based for the relationship to work for you is important.  For some clients, location is less relevant whereas for others local access and local knowledge of the standards of the provider matter. 

BDO’s services that combine to form BDODrive are available internationally across our offices.  Crucially BDO Limited has a dedicated team that is responsible for providing BDODrive directly to clients, here on-island. 

To find out more about how BDO can assist you in continuing your success, get in touch for a no obligation consultation.