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Is Your Accounting Staff Capable of Taking You Farther?

Apr 9, 2008
When you start a company you're not thinking about the skills and talents your employees will need years down the road. You're focused on survival, and that often means hiring just about anyone who will take the leap of faith with you at the pay you're able to offer.

Oftentimes, a business owner hires somebody they already know and trust, such as a relative or neighbor, to do bookkeeping for them. Even if it means this person doesn't have experience in bookkeeping (or very little), they're probably more skilled at it than the owner.

Are You Ready to Bolster Your Accounting Staff?

As your business continues to grow, it stands to reason that your business's requirements and needs grow as well. It may be true that at some point, the bookkeeper you hired is no longer capable of doing the job. This is because as your business expands, transactions will become more complicated, which in turn can make the books completely out of the realm of your current bookkeeper's skill. If the bookkeeper is just focused on keeping up with basic tasks, the finer details get neglected.

For example, profits could be ignored, cash not managed. It may also be that you're not building relationships with lenders you need to. In short, you're letting opportunities for your business to grow slip away. If you as the owner know how to present the business to an investor or bank, your numbers might still let you down if they haven't been done properly. This can negatively impact your entire organization.

Hold on, There's Help for the Business Owner

In fact, many owners don't consider themselves knowledgeable in finance or accounting, and don't have a formal background in it. This can leave them poorly equipped to properly supervise a bookkeeper, much less train them. In addition, they may not be able to handle issues like forecasting, controlling costs, and analyzing profitability.

However, if you hire someone who's a qualified CFO or controller, this can help you in a couple of ways:

* The CFO or controller can support and train your existing accounting staff, so that they can operate at optimal levels. This might include putting together procedural manuals, automating some processes, and reorganizing disorganized books, so that the bookkeeper can have a fresh start.

* By performing financial duties that fall outside the expertise of the bookkeeper and the owner-this might include things like preparing and analyzing financial statements, creating business plans, defining budgets and performing cash flow analysis.

This can take pressure off of the business owner, who is then able to have the time and energy to focus on running the business. The bookkeeper in turn tends to do much better once trained properly and with clear expectations to follow.

Efficiency Increases Your Bottom Line

Efficiently running your accounting operations directly impacts your profitability, in your favor. For example, if you process accounts receivable effectively, you can collect payments much more promptly, which in turn means that your cash flow is much more even. This in turn means that your bank sees this and you have much more credibility with them.

If you question your accounting staff's ability to take you to the next level, you might want to consider calling upon a professional accounting service.
About the Author
About the Author: Margot Brandlin writes and works for OWL Bookkeeping and CFO Services. Owl Bookkeeping supplies Businesses in Minneapolis Quickbooks training and implementation.
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