Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

The Benefits of Outsourcing

March 9, 2010

Operating as efficiently as possible is a goal for all small business owners; however a common misconception is that to achieve this goal they must do as much as possible on their own. The true key to success and the easiest way to increase your profits is to focus on what you do best, and outsource other areas of your business to trustworthy individuals in those fields. Outsourcing allows you the following benefits:
• Focus on strengthening and maintaining strong customer relations
• Grow your business by having more time to spend on networking and building strategic relationships
• Feel secure knowing your finances, payroll, taxes, marketing, etc. are in good hands
• Eliminate costly fines, penalties, and mistakes associated with accounting and bookkeeping errors
• Have more time for yourself and your family
The most common areas of outsourcing, and most helpful, are listed below:
• Accounting/Bookkeeping
• Payroll
• Marketing
• Administrative Assistant duties using a Virtual Assistant
For more information on the benefits of outsourcing please contact Jessica at Accounting Solutions Plus, LLC today!

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Are you asking the right questions?

November 11, 2009

Bookkeeping takes time and knowledge that most business owners do not have; therefore they find someone else to handle this task for them. Some businesses hire an employee either part-time or full-time to manage their books. Others decide to outsource their bookkeeping needs to a bookkeeping service or accounting firm. No matter what route you decide to take, asking the proper questions during the interview process is imperative. Below you will find a helpful guide to aide you in your search for the perfect bookkeeping professional.

 

Identify your needs before you begin searching:

Make a list of what you would like someone to take care of for you. Be specific by listing out what accounting software you currently use or would like to use. Have a good idea of how many bookkeeping entries you make during an average month. Do you need someone to help with payroll? What taxes is your company responsible for? What type of business entity are you? How many payables and receivables do you have?

Formulate specific questions that demand specific answers:

  • My company uses QuickBooks Pro 2009. Do you have any experience using QuickBooks, and if so, please tell me in detail what you have done within this software.
  • My business has sales tax that is due monthly. Do you have experience preparing and filing sales tax returns? If so, please give me details on this experience.

Ask questions regarding the interviewee’s background, industry experience, etc.

  • Do they have experience working in small business? What industry do they have experience in?
  • Are they willing to adapt to your business needs, within reason, and make any transitions or changes as comfortable as possible?
  • Are they able and willing to spot mistakes and make the appropriate corrections?
  • In general, what type of system do they have for maintaining someone’s bookkeeping records?
  • What type of ethics training do they have?
  • Do they guarantee confidentiality?

Is this person/service/firm a good fit for my business?

Not all individuals or businesses are going to mesh well. I have learned that not all clients are a good fit for my business and my business is not a good fit for all clients. I am knowledgeable enough to know when this is the case and I will help that client find someone else who would be a better fit. Not all bookkeeping professionals will do this. It is up to you, the business owner, to try and make this determination during the interview process. Asking the right questions and stating your needs, in detail, up front, will help eliminate the headache of hiring one person after another. Finding a good fit the first time will also cut down on mistakes, stress, and time.

Good luck in your search and as always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

 

Jessica Blankenship – Owner – Bookkeeping Etc.

Change – Do you embrace it?

November 10, 2009

I recently broke down and upgraded my well used and much-loved Rugby cell phone. I replaced my beloved phone with a Blackberry. My Rugby was durable, utilitarian, user-friendly, and comfortable. It didn’t have a lot of bells and whistles but was perfect for my needs at the time.

As my business thankfully grows, I have discovered that my needs have changed. Wouldn’t it be great to have my calendar and email at my finger tips whenever I’m away from my desk? No more waiting 3-4 hours to respond to a client or forgetting about an appointment until it is too late. As I described my new-found needs to the cell phone rep I was assured that a Blackberry was the way to go.  So, after swearing I would never own one, I sold out and am now the new owner of a Blackberry Curve, and happily so.

As I was sitting there dreading the thought of parting with my Rugby, I thought “Is change really so bad?”. I believe people in general have misconceptions of change.  I, however, have discovered that change can so many times be a positive experience that brings about new beginnings – even it means the end of something that was once good as well.

From a business perspective, we learn that changes need to be continuously made to allow our business to grow and to keep up with industry standards. We also need to allow change so we are better able to meet our clients/customers needs.

So, my question for today is this: Do you embrace change or shy away from it with the hope that it doesn’t have to be done? If you are like I once was and dread the thought of change, I ask that you sit back and think about all of the ways change can positively influence your life and inspire greater things to come. Before you know it you’ll be handling it like a pro and embracing the many changes you are sure to face in both your personal and professional lives!

 

Jessica Blankenship – Owner – Bookkeeping Etc.