Why Outsource Bookkeeping Services? Our CPA Firm Answers You

Cassidy Jakovickas

May 15, 2024

Author Lily Collins got it right in her book Unfiltered when she said, “Asking for help is never a sign of weakness. It’s one of the bravest things you can do. And it can save your life.” In the business world, asking for help can save your business.  

As a business owner, doing your own bookkeeping may seem like it saves time and money. However, there are many hidden costs that accompany poor bookkeeping that are causing businesses to consider bookkeeping help. In early 2023, a Clutch survey of over 500 business leaders revealed that 83% of businesses are making room in their budget for outsourced business services like accounting.

But is outsourced bookkeeping the best mix of value and cost for you? Or should you hire a bookkeeper?

We’ve discussed the importance of bookkeeping, as well as practical scenarios where it can be the differentiator between success and failure in your business, in our article about the importance of building a strong bookkeeping foundation – not a house of cards.


Hire a bookkeeper or use outsourced bookkeeping services?

Here’s a quick comparison to give you an overview of the pros and cons of hiring a bookkeeper and outsourcing your accounting and bookkeeping.

Should you hire a bookkeeper or use outsourced bookkeeping?

Here’s a quick comparison to give you an overview of the pros and cons of hiring a bookkeeper and outsourcing your accounting and bookkeeping.

  • The advantages of hiring a bookkeeper: With in-house bookkeeping staff, you benefit from interdepartmental collaboration and  having an employee who is solely committed to gaining a deep understanding of your industry.
  • The downsides of hiring a bookkeeper: Aside from the obvious hiring costs like wages and benefits, an in-house bookkeeper can limit you to one person’s skill set and make it difficult to scale beyond the capacity of one or a few staff. At MBS Accountancy, we work with many amazing and talented bookkeeping and accounting staff in our client companies, and yet even they would admit that there came a point when they needed outside help to handle the accounting needs of a growing company. Aside from capacity limits, relying on in-house bookkeeping staff requires skilled supervision to ensure their work is accurate and compliant with reporting requirements and industry standards.
  • The advantages of outsourced bookkeeping: When you decide to outsource bookkeeping to an accounting firm like MBS Accountancy, you gain a scalable option that either supplements your existing accounting department or becomes your all-in-one accounting department. There are no overhead costs and no supervision is needed. You also gain a team that is motivated to stay current with the latest laws and regulatory changes.
  • The downsides of outsourcing bookkeeping: If you choose a bad firm when you outsource your bookkeeping, you’ll suffer from poor communication between the firm and your staff. If they’re not invested in modern technology and client service, you may also have other client service issues like late work or ghosted calls. It’s also critical that you ask about a firm’s cybersecurity before hiring them since security breaches are increasingly common. Accounting firms are a goldmine of sensitive info, which makes them a lucrative target for cybercriminals. It’s vital that you consider these downsides before hiring a firm so you aren’t left with a mess on your hands. At MBS Accountancy, we take cybersecurity seriously and actively invest in technology that helps us work efficiently, responsively, and securely for our clients.

5 tips to help you make your decision

As you consider whether you should hire or outsource bookkeeping, consider the following:

  • Choose according to size: Small and mid-sized businesses will find outsourcing to be more cost-effective while larger companies will have the resources and complex needs to justify an in-house bookkeeper or accounting department. But even in-house bookkeepers in larger companies can succumb to the downsides of in-house bookkeepers, which is why companies at this stage invest in a fractional controller who can offer strategic guidance and accounting policy development.
  • Remember your budget: Evaluating what you truly need and can afford is key to making a financially sensible decision. If your budget is limited, outsourcing may be the most cost-efficient option. In fact, hiring a bookkeeper before it makes financial sense for you will result in financial sacrifices and wasted resources instead of the benefits you’d expect.
  • Think about management: Hiring a bookkeeper means incurring employment costs like salary and benefits, as well as the time required for training and managing them. If you’re thinking that you’d prefer an in-house bookkeeper, be sure that you also have someone in place to oversee their role. Unskilled management is often worse than no management at all. If neither you nor anyone else in your company can skillfully manage an in-house bookkeeper, then outsourced bookkeeping and accounting services are the most sensible option for you.  
  • Plan for scalability: If you anticipate rapid growth, outsourcing will be the most scalable option. Unless you have the resources to handle the costs associated with hiring one or two bookkeepers, outsourcing is the ideal option because you can focus on growth and allow the bookkeeping company to handle payroll, upskilling, and other managerial responsibilities.  
  • Realize closer data isn’t always safer data: It’s tempting to assume that the closer we keep our data to our business, the more secure it is. But this is inaccurate and illogical. It’s not outsourcing itself that results in a poor cybersecurity posture. Rather, it’s when you outsource to a company with poor infrastructure and bad security hygiene that causes information leaks and security breaches.  

Want outsourced accounting? We’ve eliminated the downsides

We know there are other accounting firms out there. That’s why MBS Accountancy is dedicated to being the best firm you’ve ever known. As you consider the downsides to outsourced accounting that I mentioned earlier in this article, I’d like to explain how we’ve addressed each drawback of outsourcing bookkeeping and accounting:

  • Bad communication isn’t tolerated: We’re sticklers for responsive communication and do our best to leave no email or call unanswered, unless it’s the weekend or a federal holiday. In that case, we plan ahead and catch up on any outstanding items so you’re not wondering about the status of your tax return or profit-and-loss statement.  
  • A place we love to go: Sure, work is work. But the most successful people do what they love so it never feels like work. We hire only the best accountants, offer generous benefits, and let staff choose between hybrid or remote work arrangements. They can even alternate between the two options at any time. Benefits like these make our team motivated to give you their best –– every time.
  • Security clearance required: Some accounting firms don’t realize they’re a target for cybercriminals because they manage sensitive documents and financial statements for their clients. We, on the other hand, take our responsibility very seriously and have implemented best practices like two-factor authentication, secure servers, ongoing staff training, and other access control measures to prevent unauthorized access to client data. We’re stewards, not slobs, when it comes to our firm’s security posture.

If you are interested in our accounting and bookkeeping services, contact us today so we can set up a call to discuss your needs, explain our services in more detail, and recommend the best path forward for your business.