The biggest roadblock in starting to outsource is time, and not having systems and processes in place to cope with it. There is never a right time to start; your firm will always be busy. But don’t let that stop you from taking advantage of outsourcing. Your systems and processes are something that should always be evolving and changing. This isn’t a set and forget strategy. To assist you to get started now, here are some tips:
1. Get the team together and map out the process from the first contact with a client, to the ongoing relationship and what you deliver to clients.
Once you have the client process mapped out, put it into a workflow mapping software so you can see the map of workflow and your client journey with your firm. Once you have done this, every step of the process needs a training video and written instructions.
2. Get the people doing the work to document the process
The easiest way to do this is to set-up an office or quiet space within your firm for staff to go to and record themselves doing their work. What we mean by this is screen capturing (recording their computer screen as they do the work) and talking through what they are doing. This can be achieved with cheap software like Camptasia or Screen Capture. Once this is done, it can be sent offshore to be edited and corporatised. This now gives you a training video. Once the video is completed, get this transcribed (again, offshore, for around $3 per hour) and now you have a written process.
3. Build these processes and systems into a training library or your client management system
The easiest way to ensure consistency of processes and systems is to have a tasking system that everyone follows. This can be done through systems like Basecamp or client management systems like Workflow Max or Salesforce. A good operator will be able to track the completion of tasks to identify areas of difficulty or misunderstanding as well as monitor the efficient and effective completion of the tasks. While this process seems hard and complex, it can be done quickly. All it takes is for your team to record what they are doing, so unless they’re not doing anything then this shouldn’t be too difficult. One tip is to regularly update your processes as they change and become more efficient.
The Outsourced Accountant supports Australian and New Zealand accounting firms by helping them understand and implement outsourcing solutions to help them become more proactive and truly add value to their clients. If you want to know more about outsourcing, 03call us at 1300 896 522, and download our e-book.