All business owners wear many hats and often, you start out wearing ALL the hats, including bookkeeping. As your business grows it becomes difficult to continue doing so. It can even become detrimental to your business. But how do you know when it is the right time to give away a hat or two and which ones to relinquish?
Why not start with a critical business function that most business owners dislike, bookkeeping.
If you answer yes to one or more of the following questions, it may be time to consider hiring a professional.
Are you paying your accountant to perform bookkeeping tasks?
Accountants charge higher fees for their services than do bookkeepers. If you are paying them to perform your ongoing tasks like transaction classification and account reconciliation, you are likely paying too much.
Are bookkeeping tasks taking you away from working on your business?
Do you spend several hours a week, or a day, keeping the financial records of your business? Hiring a professional bookkeeper will free those hours up so you can focus on what is most important, running your business.
Do you know what you don’t know?
Do-it-yourself accounting programs have come a long way, but they still can’t identify which meal receipts are 50% deductible instead of 100% or if the profit margins on your widget are high enough to cover production costs. Can you? If you are looking at your books wondering if they are accurate, it’s time to bring in an expert.
Is recordkeeping always the last thing on your to-do list?
Most business owners see bookkeeping as a necessary evil. Either they don’t know how to do it, or they simply dislike it. They put it off until it absolutely must be done. If you don’t keep your records up to date and there are financial issues that have not been identified early, you can be headed for trouble without even knowing it.
Have compliance requirements gotten complicated?
When you started out, things were easy. Little if any payroll, no 401K’s or healthcare accounts. Now, you have the Affordable Care Act, overtime rules, the independent contractor test, and on and on. It’s very important that your business complies with regulations and other requirements but adhering to these obligations can become very time-consuming. A qualified bookkeeper can take this responsibility off your shoulders.
If now is the time for you to hire a professional start reaching out. Most bookkeepers will offer a free consultation. Start small if that is more comfortable for you. Hire them to do a monthly review of your books or automate your workflow. This will allow you the opportunity to find out if you can work well together in a larger, long-term partnership.