What can F&A outsourcing do for a business? “It can help reduce the costs substantially and it can streamline the delivery.” If this is the answer that came to your mind, you are right. But it is an incomplete answer. Outsourcing has matured over the last decade and labour arbitrage is just one piece of the puzzle. Businesses that deal with mature providers know that a lot more can be gained through a closer relationship with the offshore vendor.
So, while looking for an outsourced accounting solution, businesses do keep an eye on the cost & delivery, but are also driven by the following expectations:
1) Improved end-customer experience: Finance teams in developing countries are expected to deliver a good customer experience; i.e., they are expected to deliver satisfactory services to end-clients, customers, employees and other stakeholders. F&A outsourcing has moved beyond TAT (turn-around time) and delivery to focus on providing better experiences to all the people that it services. Via mature partnerships with vendors, companies are able to leverage outsourcing to deliver a better customer experience. This is accomplished through timely delivery, accuracy, regular follow-ups and quick query resolution.
2) Productivity gains through continuous process improvement: Businesses often outsource to benefit from the vendor's specialisation and process rigour. With the best BPO accounting processes already in place, offshore vendors can deliver significant productivity improvements. Organisations often turn to outsourcing to radically improve processes and generate substantial productivity gains (25-30%) over a short period of time.
3) Industry expertise: While many businesses are happy with standard finance best practices and delivery, finance leaders from certain industries look for vendors that possess industry-specific capability. For example, as one of the leading payroll and accounting suppliers to the recruitment industry in the UK, QX understands HMRC legislations related to the business and can advise clients on the best ways of managing compliance and improving effeciency. Our knowledge of the industry transaltes into significant productivity gains for our clients.
4) Insightful reporting: Finance and accounting services providers can help businesses take their financial reporting to the next level through customised reports in easy-to-digest formats. By delivering high-quality and accurate data, offshore teams enable onshore finance leaders to speed up reporting and make data-driven decisions. When dealing with more mature offshore teams, companies can share data to get detailed analytics; however, for this to happen the business has to be willing to share business data with a service provider.
5) Staffing flexibility: One of the biggest advantages of outsourcing finance & accounting work to India is the consistency of delivery resulting from the availability of staff. Service providers have systems and processes in place to cover for attrition, staff movement and other factors that could potentially affect delivery. By choosing a provider with strong recruitment, on boarding, retention and staff training capabilities, businesses can ramp resources up with a short notice and never have to worry about staffing issues.
6) Support for technology and innovation: Finance outsourcing companies with mature processes can support or drive digitisation and innovation initiatives for their clients. Such providers strive to understand the maturity of the client environment and suggest a transition plan for business process transformation. For businesses that aim to reengineer processes or replace paper-based processes with digital systems, partnering with such vendors can be very beneficial. Outsourcing vendors may also have RPA, AI and analytics solutions that can help their clients maximise their benefits from innovative technologies.
Would you like to know more about how your organisation can benefit from finance & accounts outsourcing? Why not get in touch with our F&A experts for a free, no-obligation consultation.