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Why Small Businesses Should Consider Outsourcing

1st April 2019

We live in a world where everyone is connected by digital streams of information, making it easier than ever before for companies to outsource their services and collaborate with professionals to help them get their work done quickly, easily, and in a meticulous manner. There are many jobs which are regularly outsourced by small businesses who don’t want an in-house team, such as accounting, manufacturing, and data entry.

There are many benefits to outsourcing aspects of your businesses work, especially if they are aspects of the work that you’re not too familiar with. For example, outsourced accounting is very common across multiple business industries, with firms like Pearl Accountants providing services to small businesses which need their accounts done by experienced and professional teams.

There are so many experts out there who are just waiting to be hired and help your business out, so why not take advantage of their industry knowledge and expertise by outsourcing them? Whether it’s outsourced accountants or outsourced industry consultants, there are so many great reasons why outsourcing can be a huge benefit for your business.

Here we have covered some of the top reasons that we think outsourcing is valuable to your small business in 2019, helping you to save money, harness industry knowledge, and grow your company in a sustainable manner. If you need any further advice about the benefits of outsourcing, feel free to speak to one of our well-experienced business and tax advisors.

Cost savings 

If you’re a small business with limited funds at your disposal, chances are that cash flow and expenses are at the top of your entrepreneurial mind. It doesn’t matter if you’re a little startup or a long-established company… it’s likely that you don’t have a bunch of money to be wasting. As a result, you should be looking to reduce your expenses and running costs wherever you can, saving every possible penny.

Outsourcing can help you with this tremendously. For example, if you were hiring outsourced accountants, you would be paying them a fraction of what you would pay for a full-time in-house accountant. What’s more, when you have an in-house accounting team, you have to consider additional things such as IT equipment and software which need paying for.

Alas, in-house accountants (and many other similar roles) will never have enough work to do which can keep them occupied full-time. You see, there’s only so much accounting and bookkeeping that a small business needs, so why not hire some outsourced accountants for the few hours of work which need doing? This way, you save so much money on lost time.

Did you know that the average small business spends around £25,000 on hiring a salaried bookkeeper to keep track of their accounts? On the other hand, here at Pearl, we offer professional bookkeeping services which we can perform remotely. With us, you’ll get professional-level chartered accountants who are only charging for the limited amount of time spent doing the bookkeeping tasks. Ultimately, what’s the point in hiring in-house bookkeepers for £25,000 when they’ll spend much of the year doing nothing of value? Hire outsourced accountants like Pearl instead and you’ll save a bunch of money.

There are lots of examples of saving money via outsourcing – it’s not only limited to outsourced accounting. For example, many small businesses will find it cost-effective to outsource their HR, benefits administration, data entry, and many other processes. This helps to free up cash flow for your business by only hiring full-time staff if you really need them. What’s more, it also reduces the potential overheads and expenses involved when doing these sorts of tasks in-house.

Business focus

If you encounter a problem which needs fixing in your business, then you’re going to have to take time away from your usual value-adding tasks in order to address this issue. For example, if you have an IT crisis which causes your systems to crash, you would need to divert time and resources away from your everyday operations in order to fix this problem.

However, by outsourcing, you can remain dedicated to the running and growth of your business while paying external professionals to deal with any problems which may arise. In the aforementioned example, hiring an outsourced IT consultant to inspect the problem makes it easier for someone running a small business to continue running their business as they should.

Disasters aside, outsourcing can boost your focus and productivity by “automating” (but with people) your everyday menial tasks which would otherwise clog up your day. Any decent small business owner wants to free up as much time as possible for entrepreneurial tasks and endeavours… if there’s any way you can get rid of time spent doing “busywork”, then they’re all for it.

Outsourcing is a brilliant way to dish out your busywork in a cost-effective manner, giving you more time to develop long-term visions for your business, focus in on improvements to the customer experience, and come up with ways to add value to your small business and make it more attractive to investors… as well as more profitable for yourself! The average small business is worth around £90,000 in the UK. Are you doing enough to make your business sustainable and profitable in the long run?

Human error

Are you trying to do your own taxes? Perhaps you’re spending hours on data entry tasks that you’re not very good at or experienced in? Human error and mistakes can be a huge concern for small businesses, with businesses in the US and UK losing £18.7 billion every year due to human error. When you’re working with areas such as accounting which are largely focused on money and taxes, the consequences of human error can be crippling for a company.

You might think that you’re qualified enough to handle these processes yourself, but the chances are that you’ll make some mistakes, take a long time, and possibly see yourself out of pocket. On the other hand, outsourced accountants such as Pearl can help to perform these tasks efficiently and competently, greatly reducing the likelihood of human error ever becoming an issue.

For example, did you know that if you accidentally underpay your tax bill, HMRC has a bunch of incorrect tax bill fines set up to charge you with? These fines are a percentage of the extra tax you owe, so your fine will be proportionate to the size of your business and could deal a nasty blow to your cash flow. However, outsourced accounting services such as Pearl Accountants are fully compliant with HMRC and Companies House, so we know all of the processes they carry out and we know what they’re looking for on your tax returns.

With the experience of professional chartered accountants such as ourselves, you can minimize the likelihood of errors on your tax bill. What’s more, you can also comply with the regulations set in place my HMRC and Companies House, making it even less likely that you’ll land in hot water due to human-made mistakes. If there’s one organisation you don’t want to be on the wrong side of, it’s the UK government, so why risk making mistakes when you could leave it to the experts?

This is also extremely applicable to areas such as IT, where human error is the root cause of most security breaches. Outsourcing your IT problems to a professional IT consultancy means you can rest assured that your sensitive data is safe and secure, not falling into the hands of anyone it shouldn’t. If you work with professional IT teams which you outsource, you can rest assured that they’ll have the tools, knowledge, and experience necessary to get the work done without compromising your company’s cybersecurity to do so.

Expertise

Even if you’re competent enough to do something without making a bunch of mistakes, you could be missing out on a lot of advantages that only an outsourced professional will know about. Although this may not seem like that much of a big deal, an outsourced professional’s expertise could see you making huge cost savings and time savings if they know what they’re doing.

The latest trends and technological improvements could indeed set your business apart from your competitors, so it’s a good idea to remain abreast of the latest developments by outsourcing work to experts who are likely to be using all the latest tools and techniques to keep your business profitable and competitive within its market.

For example, if your company needs a Finance Director, but you don’t need a full-time director, the experts at Pearl Accountants can provide an outsourced part-time Finance Director service where one of our experienced accountants acts as your part-time FD, looking at your financials and coming up with new and innovative ways to grow and sustain your business.

With our part-time Finance Director service, you are able to harness the professionalism and expertise of a full-time FD but without paying a full-time FD’s salary! This is a great way to help your business come up with new ideas and ensure that you’re observing all the necessary due diligence and best practices with your finances. If you’re spending too recklessly or too conservatively for the size of your small business, one of our part-time FDs will be able to tell you.

Whether it’s finance directing or data entry, hiring outsourced experts allows you to tap into their industry knowledge and expertise, making it easy for you to remain up to the date and competitive. After all, if you fall too behind with the latest trends in business operations, then your performance could suffer in the long run, leading to problems.

Competitive advantages

Small businesses are constantly forced to compete with huge enterprises, and many of them will never win the fight. You only need to take a look at your average high street to see the proliferation of big business and the lack of small businesses and independent retailers, for example. Sadly, big businesses have the resources and funds at their disposal to invest in the latest technologies and developments, giving them a competitive advantage.

However, outsourcing gives some of the advantages back to the UK’s small businesses, who can use this flexible means of working to free up more funds for investments and innovations, helping them to catch up to huge enterprises. For example, while big companies can afford to hire full-time IT teams which keep a watchful eye over their computer systems, small businesses can hire outsourced IT consultants to take a look at their systems whenever things happen to go awry.

This means that whenever there is a major overhaul which is required in the industry, such as the recent GDPR regulation, small businesses can hire experts in these fields as and when they need them. Large companies struggled to overhaul their IT systems in time for the GDPR deadlines, with Google even getting fined £44 million for breaching GDPR in France. Nonetheless, a small business can outsource experts in these fields to ensure that these mistakes don’t happen, helping to give them an edge over their huge competitors.

Compliance

There’s an awful lot of regulations to comply with if you’re a small business in the UK, whether it’s GDPR or Making Tax Digital. Furthermore, you have to comply with the various regulations set in place by HMRC and Companies House, which can be confusing and vague at the best of times. As you can probably imagine, failing to comply with the dozens of regulation put in place by these organisations can see your business being fined a lot of money, something which could potentially be devastating.

However, if we take outsourced accounting as an example, companies such as Pearl can help to ensure that your small business complies with all the necessary regulations, making sure that you don’t run into any problems with the law. All of our outsourced small business accountants are fully compliant with all the rules and regulations of these UK institutions, helping your small business to stay above board with the UK government, which can come in very handy!

Flexibility

Perhaps the most noticeable benefit of outsourcing is its endless flexibility. As you’re usually hiring a team/expert which is working remotely, you can get the professional help you need without having to invest in extra office space, for example. This is brilliant for organisations with limited office space (or none at all!) which need help with accounting, data entry, and other office-based tasks.

Similarly, when outsourcing, you only pay the experts for the time that you need their services. After that, you bid them farewell and only contact them again once you need their help. This makes outsourcing a very attractive option for businesses, helping them to remain dynamic and flexible in a world which continues to demand versatility and flexibility.

In fact, outsourcing is so strongly linked to the idea of flexibility than one outsourcing service even named their company after it. Flexibility is continually named as one of the most in-demand business traits for companies heading into the 2020s, whether it’s in terms of outsourced accountants or outsourced IT teams and technical support consultants.

Increased reach

By outsourcing work temporarily instead of hiring people to do it on a full-time basis, you’re able to reach more professional and high-level services than you would be able to otherwise. For instance, you might not be able to afford to hire a high-level Finance Director in your company, but with Pearl’s part-time FD service, you are able to have access to a high-end chartered accountant who has the knowledge and industry experience to provide you with FD services which help to take your company to the next level.

This kind of reach can be invaluable when you’re trying to grow your business sustainably and safely, with Pearl’s business and tax consultants and professional bookkeepers being brilliant examples of professionals whose experience and professionalism might be out of reach for lots of small businesses unless they were being outsourced on a temporary “as and when” ad hoc basis.

The bottom line

Any small UK business which is looking to remain competitive in the modern business world needs to strongly consider outsourcing services such as accounting to professional outsourced chartered accountants such as Pearl. This also applies to other aspects of everyday business operations, such as data entry and IT support, where the help of a professional can be invaluable.

By outsourcing the parts of their business which can indeed by outsourced, small business owners are presented with a cost-effective way to reduce their overall costs, increase their cash flow, grow at a sustainable rate, and free up more time for value-adding business tasks. If you’re a small business in the UK which is not taking advantage of outsourcing, it’s only a matter of time before you fall behind your competitors and get caught out!

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