You know you need a bookkeeper, but what now? Do you outsource to a professional, or do you hire a part-time employee to do it in-house? If you hire in-house, do you go the cheap route and train someone with little to no experience? Or do you spend a little extra on an experienced bookkeeper?
Here are a few questions to help you decide the best course of action.
#1. Do you know how to do bookkeeping?
This one is pretty straight-forward. You shouldn’t try to train someone to do a job that you’re not comfortable doing yourself. However, if you know how to keep your own books, hiring someone inexperienced may be a good route to save money, but be warned that you will need to spend a lot of time training and checking their work for the first six months to a year. Categorizing receipts, paying bills, and receiving payments, and pulling reports may be second nature to you at this point, but it will all be brand new to them.
#2. Do you have time to train?
I’m going to say it again: You will need to spend a lot of time training and checking the work of an inexperienced bookkeeper for the first six months to a year. If you don’t have time to train, you need to find someone who has done this before.
A lot of people go the route of hiring inexperienced bookkeepers, and it works out. That’s how I got my start. Someone had the time and patience to train me, and I wouldn’t be where I am without them. I’m not saying don’t do it, just know what you’re getting yourself into.
#3. In-House Or Outsourced?
If you decide to go with a professional, you have another option. Do you hire in-house or outsource the position? You might find a person you can pay $12/hr, but then you spend half of your week fixing mistakes. Was it worth it? If you hire a bookkeeper with experience, you will pay a minimum of $18/hr. In either of these scenarios, you have one more person on payroll which means more taxes, and time spent managing (they get paid hourly, so there’s less incentive to work quickly). You do, however, have an extra hand around the office if you have non-bookkeeping work that needs doing. Additionally, your company is responsible for any errors made by an in-house bookkeeper. Outsourcing your bookkeeping gives you an extra layer of protection.
Hiring a professional bookkeeper is like hiring a trained chauffeur to drive you around vs. a sixteen-year-old who just got their license. You won’t spend time managing them or checking their work, and you can trust them to be timely and professional. If something goes wrong with the books, it’s the bookkeeper’s responsibility, not yours. In other words, you can relax knowing your beautiful car won’t get beat up from slamming the breaks and revving gas, and you’re not going to die in a horrific accident.
If you are thinking about outsourcing your bookkeeping, contact us to learn how we can save you time and money.
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