Climb to New Heights with Outsourced Accounting

rinehimerbaker provides outsourced accounting services to clients throughout the United States allowing them to grow while maintaining a lean team. For those who don’t currently use an outsourced accounting partner the big question still remains- should you outsource or hire within as you grow?

 

The answer to this question depends on your current company growth, annual volume, the complexity of your business, and the amount of time you personally want back. Many of the owners we help have been up late at night trying to stay on top of their business’ accounting and finance needs. By moving to our team you gain a partner who will reduce total costs, save you time, help you make better decisions faster, and allow you to stay focused on the main mission of your company. Find out more about each advantage below.

 

-Reduces Costs

 

Your total costs can easily get away from you especially when you are stretched for time and can’t make accounting your priority. An outsourced accounting partner can remove the burden of trying to review and analyze your costs by delivering you focused reports that provide insights to help you manage your business more efficiently. Additionally, an outsourced partner saves you from hiring your own staff and keeps your overheads low.

 

Saves Time

 

With an outsourced accounting partner such as rinehimerbaker you gain hours back into your personal and business day. A partner takes over daily, weekly, and monthly tasks such as month-end closing, AP, AR, payroll, reports, taxes, forecasting and budgeting, and more. We’ve saved our clients thousands of hours – what would you do with your additional time?

 

-Make Better Decisions Faster

 

With a team that is using a cloud-based ERP solution you will have access to a customized dashboard that has real-time data. This information allows you and your management team to quickly analyze your business and make decisions quickly. Effectively keeping you ahead of your competition.

 

-Keeps You Focused on the Big Picture

 

An outsourced partner provides less stress, more time, better accounting, and accurate results. They can also provide additional resources to help with special projects and can quickly react to changes in your business. Without the distraction of having to manage your accounting function you the ability to focus on growing your company and reaching more customers. With more time for your mission, you can achieve your goals sooner.

Find out how rinehimerbaker can help your company get results through the cloud by reaching out to accounting@rinehimerbaker.com.


outsource accounting partner

Selecting the Right Outsourced Accounting Partner to Drive Your Business

When evaluating how you can better manage your time often executives face a decision between adding internal staff or finding an external partner to manage tasks. Internal staff not only adds additional salaries but also benefits, workspace/essentials, training resources, and more. Not to mention, it takes many months before new employees are proficient in their new roles. Alternatively, an outsourced accounting partner can provide an entire team that has an expertise in a given field and allows you to have the time back in your calendar to focus on what is important- expanding your company’s mission.

 

  • Consider what you are looking to outsource

 

The first step in deciding on an outsourced accounting partner is making a list of tasks that you are looking for an expert to take and complete each week, month, or year. For an outsourced accounting partner, this can include closing your books, building dashboards for your owners or managers, building and running reports, taxes, accounts payable, accounts receivable and more. The amount you wish to outsource depends on if you have a finance team in place or if the owner/manager is still completing those tasks daily. At rinehimerbaker, we have experts in each field that can quickly and efficiently get all your tasks completed and to you in a timely manner.

 

  • Align with a Proven Partner

 

As you assess potential partners be sure to ask for references, take the time to talk to active clients, and ask for case studies that demonstrate their success. All three of these resources are readily available with a partner that has been in business for any length of time. You can use these to access how to outsource partner works, and what they have been able to accomplish for other companies. Such as if you are looking to outsource your month-end close- how quickly have they been able to close other companies? Was it the same time or did they deliver results ahead of time?

 

When speaking with their customers or reading through case studies make sure to notice the type of technology the partner uses to complete your tasks. Is the software cloud-based or on-premise? Being cloud-based offers many advantages and you’ll want to be aligned with a partner who can leverage new technologies. The technology they use also lets you know how innovative they are and where they see the future going. You want a company focused on being best-in-class as this demonstrates they’ll be able to take the burden off of you and you’ll no longer have to worry about how to stay ahead of your competition.

 

 

  • Check for Culture Compatibility

 

The final step and probably the most important is checking company culture compatibility. Working with a company that is aligned with your core beliefs will ultimately make it easier to trust someone else to make decisions on your behalf. You also want a partner that works similar hours with the same expectations for deadlines. This doesn’t mean that you have to be in the same time zone but it does mean you have to look at a workday the same. That could be having expectations that deadlines are a hard cut off with no wiggle room or you are focused on a work-life balance where the cut off is 5 pm every day despite deadlines. This will help eliminate any potential disagreements or frustrations after the partnership has started.

 

Find out how rinehimerbaker can help your company get results through the cloud by reaching out to accounting@rinehimerbaker.com.

 


Take your Business to the Next Level in 2020

With 2019 wrapping up, many executives are looking for ways to stay relevant and innovative and stand out against their competition in 2020. Many companies are pursuing goals of increasing revenue and profitability, reducing costs, and expanding their cause. How are they going to do this? After looking at trends for next year, below are our top suggestions on how to take your business to the next level.

 

  • Improve productivity by automating

Automating processes for a growing company is a great way to get the most out of each workday. If your team is spending time on manual data entry every month, they probably don’t enjoy their work, you likely are not getting accurate data and their direction is not as focused on the purpose of your business as it could be. You may also lose the ability to make strategic decisions quickly because the data is useless by the time it becomes available. Cutting out manual processes, integrating systems and relying more on the cloud can speed delivery, eliminate the lengthy month-end close cycle and provide accurate results quickly, while data is still relevant.

 

Take a look at every team members’ daily, weekly, and monthly tasks. How many of them can be automated by upgrading your technology? While not everything can be upgraded at once, you can pin-point which manual tasks are taking too much time and which ones are costing the business by not being completed faster. This can be true for customer experience practices, month-end accounting processes, and sales activities.

 

  • Expand Your Reach

In 2020, the cloud will be even more prominent for businesses than it already has in the past two decades. By leveraging the cloud, you can influence more existing and potential customers in different markets and reach top potential employees for open positions.  The cloud improves access and collaboration like never before.

 

If you aren’t already using the cloud to grow your customer base, expand into new markets and reach the right employees for your firm, analyze which systems you are currently using for these processes and find out if they can be converted to the cloud.  If you don’t have a Customer Relationship Management system, human resource management tools and effective accounting solutions in place already, now may be the time to consider implementing one or all of these.  Most applications now have cloud-based options with open APIs allowing for seamless connections between each other. Rely on a trusted advisor who can educate you on the leading systems and processes being utilized in your industry. Consider how upgrading, integrating or implementing a best-in-class solution can give your company an advantage over your competition.

 

  • Elevate Your Customer Experience

The customer experience is what makes top companies different from their competitors. Companies who offer similar products and services must differentiate themselves from competitors and create loyal customers. How do they do that? They go above and beyond to make the customer feel special, have a memorable experience and exceed their customer’s expectations. Why is that important? Because there is so much competition that if your company isn’t memorable and competent you won’t create a loyal customer, they may not purchase from your company a second time and they will likely share their negative experience online.

 

What can you do? Evaluate your ideal customer experience and focus your efforts on delivering just that. Where do you go beyond? Where do you fall short? Are there companies that you have had a positive experience with in the past? Can you use innovation in your approach to interacting with customers more effectively?  Use the power of customer experience analytics to measure behavior, demographic and other metrics in real-time.  Find ways to reward your engaging customers, engage with them on social media and strive to make customer experience advocates out of all your employees.  Taking these initiatives can improve your current customer experience and make it a competitive advantage.

 

 


Five Signs You Need Outsourced Accounting Help

5 Signs Your Company Might Need An Outsourced Accounting Partner

If you’re considering outsourcing any of your company’s financial management or accounting functions, you’re likely bursting at the seams with “so much to do in so little time.” But there are other reasons growing companies might need to hire outside, professional help. Let’s take a look at some common signs that it’s time to call out to a partner, “SOS!”

1. Things are Getting Complex—Fast

If your business is growing, every department gets affected at some point. New business requirements eventually take their toll. The finance and accounting areas may struggle under the strain of more transactions, more reporting requests, and more deadlines. Aside from the requirements, complexity in the work itself is often the culprit that drives financial teams to look for a partner to get them through to the next level.

What’s more, accounting and financial management may not be among the core competencies of your company—and executives want to invest outside of the “back office.” More than ever, you need guidance and support to navigate changes and set up systems that are ready for even more, and an outsourcing partner can be the ideal solution

2. Your Manual Processes Are Causing Delays

Manual inefficiencies in your department’s workflows might be holding you back. Invoices get sent out late, payments get paid late, reports don’t get delivered to managers on time, and the list goes on. If you’re mired in spreadsheets and duplicate entries, you’re aware of the amount of time you’re spending on tasks that can be automated—and that’s frustrating enough. But when these issues start impacting cash flow, they also start impacting your company’s ability to scale. Depend on a third-party to manage the time-sensitive tasks using up-to-date technology so you can stay on schedule and keep your cash flow flowing…and growing.

3. What Risk Management?

Privacy laws, data breaches, tax and compliance issues, reporting requirements…there are so many reasons for organizations to consistently scrutinize the fine print and hustle to keep up with the latest industry rules regulations. It’s always possible for something to get lost in translation, or for something to fall through the cracks. But if you don’t have the checks and balances in place to ensure security, safety, and compliance, you’re leaving your business at risk for any number of costly errors, omissions, or even fraud.

For instance, you may have a lack of internal controls—maybe there are multiple people handling payments transactions. On the other hand, maybe only one person has access to all the systems. Both scenarios leave your systems and cash vulnerable. Trusting a third-party to handle your tax compliance, payroll or or other back-office tasks is a great way to safeguard your assets and get on the path to better risk management.

4. You’re Facing A Skills Gap

When leaders in your C-suite start asking questions you’re not prepared to answer, or you don’t have time to answer quickly enough, you know it’s time to evaluate your team’s competencies. Maybe there’s not an analyst on your team—or someone who’s a “whiz” at reporting. Or perhaps there are not enough people on your team. If you’re not in the financial (or strategic) position to hire new employees, an outsourced accounting partner can easily fill in the gaps and add even more value.

Read Closing the Skills Gap with Outsourced Accounting to learn more.

5. Your Technology Simply Isn’t Keeping Up

It’s possible that some of the challenges described above can be met head-on through a technology upgrade. Moving over to a cloud-based financial management and accounting software solution is the answer for many growing companies who feel the pain points of growth. With the right technology, tools, and know-how to keep processes running smoothly across systems, your team will be coasting through tasks in no time.

Naturally, if your team isn’t ready to implement a new system—or if you need more time to assess your options—it might make sense to outsource some of your accounting tasks.

Contact us if you’d like help evaluating your current system or staffing needs. We offer both outsourced accounting and cloud technology solutions that can be customized for your growing business.

Outsourcing and Accounting Skills Gap

Closing the Skills Gap with Outsourced Accounting

When just getting your basic weekly accounting tasks done puts a significant strain on your internal staff, is it safe to say you’re simply “getting by?” If what you want to achieve is growth and agility—and maximize the resources spent by your team so they’re pushing business forward—consider finding a new way to work. Teaming up with a partner to manage your back office accounting and administration, and even some of the more complex tasks like tax compliance, can result in tremendous ROI.

The Impact of Overstretching

Business growth brings more work, and without the staff bandwidth or technology to effectively tackle new requirements and a heavier workload, you can start experiencing cracks in your foundation that come in the form of errors and omissions and missed opportunities. When business owners or financial decision-makers are responsible for performing the day-to-day tasks—the finances sit on the back burner or strategic initiatives get put off. Both can have costly consequences.

Yet it can take a while to build a capable and dedicated finance and accounting team. Reporting on a Association of Accountants and Financial Professionals in Business survey, CFO points out that hiring challenges can result in increased spending, reduced productivity, and diminished work quality. They note that nearly half of the survey participants are experiencing increased time to fill entry-level positions, almost one-third are experiencing increased recruiting costs, and just under one-third are hiring under-qualified candidates to fill entry-level positions.

Business owners know all too well that getting skilled hands on deck is the answer to picking up speed—not only catching up on work, but getting ahead of it. For as long as an accounting department goes without the right staff in place to handle their various needs, the business is essentially stalled. If it’s taking too long to invoice vendors or customers, if there are delays in receiving payments, and if decision-makers aren’t getting the financial insights they need to run the business and take advantage of opportunities (if they’re identifying opportunities in the first place), there’s little of the momentum needed to attract new business.

Facing the Accounting Skills Gap

According to ManpowerGroup’s 2016/2017 Talent Shortage Survey, accounting and finance staff—which include bookkeepers, certified accountants and financial analysts—rank number seven on the list of the hardest skills to find. Here’s a look at what’s standing in employers’ way of hiring the right people:

  • Lack of applicants – 24%
  • Lack of hard skills (technical competencies) – 19%
  • Lack of experience – 19%
  • Looking for more pay than is offered – 14%
  • Lack of soft skills (workplace competencies) – 11%

Add to these challenges the fact that when you start planning to hire, it’s all too common for the process to drag through red tape. Onboarding a new employee isn’t an overnight job, either. And while providing training and development to in-house employee is a popular way to address the skills gap, this isn’t an option for small businesses with a proportionately sized employee pool. Finally, it doesn’t necessarily make sense to hire, even if you could find the right candidates.

And didn’t we say that you’re already stretched—and need support today?

When Outsourcing is the Answer

All of these hiring issues can be avoided if you outsource some or all of your finance and accounting tasks to a partner with all of the skills and competencies you’re looking for. In fact, that’s what 19% of the employers in the Manpower study are doing.

Consider working with a professional accounting services company who has the resources and industry know-how to manage any combination of your business’s needs:

  • System Set-Up
  • Bookkeeping
  • Accounts Payable
  • Billing and Accounts Receivable
  • Cash Management and Collections
  • Account Accruals/Reconciliation
  • Expense Reports
  • General Ledger
  • Month-End/Year-End Close
  • Payroll
  • Income Statements/Balance Sheets
  • Reporting/KPI Dashboards
  • Forensic Accounting
  • Financing, Restructuring, Valuations
  • Forecasting and Budgeting

Contact us to learn more.

How to tell you've outgrown QuickBooks

5 Common Accounting Mistakes Made By Growing Companies

Conventional wisdom tells us that we have to make mistakes in order to learn and grow. That’s definitely the case with on-the-rise businesses, who make plenty of mistakes as they move their operations from entrepreneurial through enterprise-level. Sure, there’s a lot of in-between—but near-constant change and recalibration in the ways the organization manages everything from its finances and supplier relationships to customers and human resources means plenty of opportunity for missteps.

When it comes to its accounting functions, a business needs to repeatedly scale to accommodate new partners, additional transactions, and more complexities at almost every turn. So what mistakes are commonly made along this road of growth? And perhaps more importantly, what do innovative leaders do to better manage change and arm their finance and accounting teams with the tools for success? To avoid making the mistakes in the first place?

Let’s take a look.

Failing to Deliver Insights On-Demand

As a company grows, the stakes get ever greater. Not only do decision-makers have more questions to ask, they have more question to answer from various stakeholders. Their answers need to be informed—relying on more than gut instinct. And financial data is often the most important part of what they need to consider while selecting the “best” path forward.

In the early stages of company growth, it was perhaps easier to produce actionable insights because there was simply less to “go on.” But with increased complexity (and more information available from the accounting department), running reports and landing on the critical numbers takes longer—that is, as long as the finance and accounting team is still using yesterday’s technology.

When a manager asks for performance results or projections based operational or financial data (especially if it’s real-time data), they need to see it now. If your team can’t deliver it until tomorrow, it becomes clear to all that you probably should have upgraded your finance and accounting software yesterday.

With Intacct, your team is empowered to create any kind of report, dashboard, or visualization they want, with exactly the metrics they need. And that enables managers to ask new business questions, get fast answers, and make confident decisions—in the now. For more insights, turn to The 3 Top Reasons Your Accounting Team Wants to Upgrade to Intacct.

Keeping Your Financial Information in Silos

Another side effect of managing a growing business is a set of disparate business systems. In the first place, they weren’t set up to “go together,” so they don’t “grow together.” Secondly, if they’re legacy or manual-based systems, they no longer offer adequate functionality, which further fragments processes via workarounds and system band-aids. The result is often poor communication between people in different functional areas and not enough sharing of data—making it almost impossible to compare apples to apples and get full visibility into the business’s financial health.

The reality is that when your systems are siloed, you’re not getting the most out of your ever-expanding data. And you’re likely draining productivity, too, as everyone is working towards different goals, with competing agendas. The reality is that systems and people need more—not less—alignment as the business grows. If you’re not bringing them together, you may be thwarting forward momentum. Consider the opportunity costs!

Modern finance accounting systems are powerful enough to integrate functions, pulling data from multiple sources of information to aid in tasks like reporting and document retrieval. With Intacct’s flexible, services oriented architecture (SOA), you can sync up to your other business applications, such as:

  • CRM and sales force automation
  • Human resources
  • Inventory and fixed assets
  • Project management
  • Payment processing
  • Payroll and ACH

With the right system integrations in place, your information becomes more powerful—and so do the insights and decisions they inform.

Relying on Manual Accounting Processes

Consider your finance and accounting team’s various tasks and related workflows: vendor management, billing, journaling, making payments, reporting…this is just for starters, and the work is getting more comprehensive as the company gets bigger, expanding into new markets and into multiple entities. Now consider the work associated with following-up on unpaid invoices, getting caught-up with old expense reports, spending late nights at the office to close the monthly books.

If there’s “manual processing” written all over these tasks, your team is likely spending more time and energy on a daily basis than they need to. Now that your company is bigger, the old methods of accounting (both managerial and financial) have become unwieldy. It would be a mistake to keep plugging along this way—and to not start automating. Using modern technology to take care of tasks like recordkeeping, issuing invoices, paying bills, managing expenses, generating reports, etc., will free up your team to focus on more strategic efforts.

Read Stop Relying on Spreadsheets and Luck – There’s a Better Way

Adopting automation through Intacct is a sure-fire way to relieve your manual woes. Learn more about how to embrace the automation needed to thrive today.

Not Having Audit-Ready Financials

Are you ready for a visit from the auditor? Do you know what it takes to be audit-ready? Do you want your audit process to run smoothly upon a solid foundation of well-documented transactions and accurate balances? Do you make it easy for your auditor to find the information they need?

If reading these questions leaves you feeling uneasy, there’s hope ahead. It’s never too late to start improving your accounting processes to avoid costly mistakes and oversights. According to Intacct, there are three things you need to be audit-ready:

  • Revenue – ensure your accounting system effectively automates, manages, and documents your revenue accounting treatment, with the ability to define separate revenue recognition schedules and rules for each individual contract and line item.
  • Receivables – establish an auditable basis for assessing the value of receivables. Your accounting software must track complete transaction details “forever” and maintain secure access to complete customer histories, allocating payments to the right invoices and periods.
  • Consolidation – understand that massive spreadsheets tend to contain formula errors and missing some general ledger accounts. For a complete and accurate financial consolidation, you should rely on your accounting system automate provide a full set of consolidating and eliminating journal entries so the auditor can see the details behind each entry.

Take A Brief Look Into Revenue Recognition Standards.

Using the Wrong Accounting Software

You may have outgrown the software that worked when you were a smaller organization—or you’re finally accepting that Excel spreadsheets are a far cry from robust accounting/reporting software. Either way, your current system is limiting you and holding you back from faster, more targeted growth.

As the other common mistakes have shown, adopting a built-for-growth finance and accounting software solution is the #1 way to give you more control and visibility into your financials. It can help you avoid mistakes that could be costing your business—or that could lead to opportunity costs. Find out How to Know When QuickBooks No Longer Makes the Cut

Whitepaper: Outgrowing QuickBooks

rinehimerbaker has released a new whitepaper for companies outgrowing QuickBooks. Outgrowing QuickBooks—How to Know It’s Time to Change shares the challenges that businesses face when growing, and the opportunities they have to ease growth. Learn more by reading the first 3 pages of the whitepaper below:

achieving finance team transformation

3 Things Keeping Your Finance Team From Unlocking Their Potential

What’s Keeping You From Unleashing Your Business Potential? Every growing business faces obstacles on its journey toward long-term success. Getting there—and staying there—takes a willingness to use turn obstacles into opportunities to find new ways of working, better ways to manage workflows, and more effective ways to motivate employees for continued growth. Let’s take a look at what might be keeping your team from unlocking their potential.

Administrative Burdens

Manual processes and legacy systems are often to blame for the errors and bottlenecks in an otherwise functioning process—they work “just well enough” to get the job done. Unfortunately, paper-based workflows and out-of-date technology are also impeding progress. They take key resources like time and human energy away from more strategic initiatives and the company can pay significant opportunity costs.

Consider these examples:

  • When invoices get stuck (or even lost) in a manual approval pipeline, companies miss out on early payment discounts and vendors or customers get frustrated
  • When an employee has to enter the same information into disparate spreadsheets and accounting systems, there’s inherent risk for human error
  • When an employee performs manual transaction matching and reconciliations, especially if they’re uncovering and repairing errors, they are using time that could have been used on business-building activities like data analysis and strategic reporting

Plus, all of the paper has to be managed: stacked, filed, stored, scanned, mailed, etc. And the patches and workarounds that accompany legacy technology systems: those have to be carefully navigated. Data access, data sharing, and data security are three additional factors in the efficiency equation—and they all impact the finance department’s productivity and ability to deliver bottom-line results.

Read more in What Does it Mean to Have Anytime, Anywhere Accounting Access?

Automation is clearly the solution to streamlining operations, serving suppliers and customers better, achieving greater data accuracy and usability, and, ultimately, realizing a stronger competitive position. But automating your department’s processes—transitioning away from paper and implementing new technologies, like cloud-based solutions—isn’t as easy as flipping a switch. It’s a process requiring change management, and usually, a cultural shift.

Cultural Resistance to Change

There’s a reason that innovation is a hallmark of start-up companies and early-stage businesses with freshly educated employees: they foster a corporate culture that depends on the latest technology (and lots of outside-of-the-box thinking) to get lots of work done—quickly. On the other hand, there’s proven value in adhering to the more traditional values demonstrated by established companies or other businesses that simply take a more conservative approach in the workplace.

Most business fall somewhere in between—and leaders are exploring ways to get their workforce cultures better aligned with the company’s mission so that individual contributions can be tied to both organizational success and personal satisfaction. Today, technology enablement is an increasingly important success factor, so forward-looking companies (especially if they’re not tech sector startups) are encouraging everyone from the C-Suite and down the ranks to embrace new technologies and understand the benefits they provide.

This day and age, most people are experiencing the benefits of technology in their personal lives—and they usually have no choice but accept change in the workplace. But that doesn’t mean everyone at a company automatically buys-in to the concept of adopting automation technology. The problem comes in when a company’s leadership or general workforce is averse to change; when fears of losing control of budgets or job security set in upon the suggestion of “embracing technology” and they begin permeate the company culture.

And this can—and does—slow progress. In fact, “cultural resistance to change” is the main reason cited by participants in Harvard Business Review Analytic Services’ The Digital Dividend: First-Mover Advantage study for not adopting new technologies. What’s more, any of the executives interviewed for the study described the need for constant innovation and a culture of change in order to stay one step ahead.

The Skills Gap

The need for tech-savvy financial professionals is trending. The Monster.com article, Staffing Trends in 2016: Finance, Tech, Healthcare and Seasonal, states that “the folks who do the nuts-and-bolts work in finance and accounting” are in high demand, cautioning that people with big data and data analytics skills are the hardest to come by. Those with the technology-rich skill sets, however, are needed drive their teams’ strategic momentum.

But let’s say your company is ready and willing to embrace new technologies—you’re eager to automate and start seeing enhanced business results—but your internal financial and accounting team lacks the capabilities to jump right in. Sure, they have the specialized skills and knowledge to perform their jobs, but they’re not necessarily comfortable with digital workflows that leverage the most up-to-date software.

Explore Why Cloud and Finance Go Together.

That doesn’t mean you have to press “pause” on your technology adoption plans. You can train your team or hire new employees, or some combination of the two. Or, you can partner with a firm offering the resources and solutions to get your team up-to-speed quickly while supporting your company through the implementation of new technologies and processes and building new internal competencies.

Struggling to reach your potential?

Use of an outsourcing partner will help you streamline business processes, highlight errors, and free up the company for growth—so you can unlock your value and continue moving forward, with nothing standing in your way. rinehimerbaker has helped organizations to enjoy a business experience that features less stress, more time, better accounting, and greater results. Learn more about our services for businesses, nonprofits, and institutions, and get in contact with us to learn more.