These days, accounting and finance professionals are in high demand, and that reality has made it increasingly difficult for nonprofit organizations to attract and retain qualified professionals. Whether you are just starting your organization, or it is well-established, the experience, insights and expertise of qualified accounting and finance professionals are essential. These professionals are vital to maintaining smooth operations, facilitating sustainability, enabling future growth, ensuring compliance with federal, state, and local tax and accounting requirements, and satisfying grant and funding reporting requirements.
More and more, nonprofit organizations are turning to outsourced accounting service providers to fill this need. The reasons are clear:
- Outside expertise. Accounting professionals from established and respected providers offer a depth and breadth of expertise that, simply put, is a rare commodity. Established outsourced professionals often have worked for years – decades even – in a variety of business and operational settings. Their experience and knowledge can be enormously beneficial to organizations large and small.
- Industry specialization. Outsourced accounting providers have experience and insights to meet all reporting requirements amidst a complex and evolving regulatory landscape. They are part of organizations that stay on top of the latest industry trends, shifts, and legislative actions. This can potentially enable the organization to anticipate changes before they happen, and plan accordingly.
- Accountability. Accounting professionals from established and respected providers are accountable not only to the organization but to their employer as well. This double layer of accountability serves everyone well; to you, it provides peace of mind that the professional is meeting her/his obligations. To the outside provider organization, the professional’s solid job performance underscores the value of their services and strengthens their reputation in the marketplace.
- Customized services. Outsourced accounting services are 100 percent customized to meet the specialized needs of every organization. Purchase and utilize only those services you need, for the specific time in which they are needed. No more, no less.
- Cost savings on several levels. This includes human resources (e.g., salary and benefits, training, turnover), audit and tax time and the corresponding expense—provided you don’t need full-time staff. Many accounting and bookkeeping functions are time-consuming. By outsourcing these tasks to professionals, in-house staff can focus on delivering critical services and fulfilling your mission.
- Technology. You’ll gain the benefit of an accounting professional who knows the way around accounting and finance systems. This means a much shorter learning curve for your organization —and more time devoted to performing essential duties. Many nonprofit organizations struggle to stay up to date with rapidly changing technology and can benefit from utilizing these resources through an outsourced accounting provider. This allows you to focus on interpreting data and making informed decisions.
- Bench strength. If your in-house CFO, controller or bookkeeper is absent for any reason, the organization could face real problems. With outsourced support, the appropriate resources can fill in as needed.
- Time savings. The hiring process is inherently time-consuming; retaining an outside provider of accounting services is a much more time-efficient task.
- Sensitivity to different reporting requirements. Professionals from respected outsourced accounting services providers can bridge the gap between financial statement presentation, Form 990-series requirements, and grant and funding source reporting requirements, so that you consider all implications in running the organization—and don’t run it solely based on only one consideration.
- Specializations to grow with the organization. When you outsource the financial requirements to a firm with broad specialties, that firm can grow with yours—through a greater depth of services to specialized knowledge and experience with complex tax and accounting matters.
Outsourced accounting services can help nonprofit organizations realize significant benefits from top to bottom. We hope you found this article useful as you think through the financial and operational challenges in your nonprofit organization and consider how outsourced accounting services can help address those challenges.
The team of outsourced accounting professionals at Yeo & Yeo is available to assist with any needs you may have related to outsourced accounting services implementation.
- We know the nonprofit accounting landscape.
- We understand the challenges nonprofit organizations face.
- We develop and deploy customized programs for organizations like yours.
- We are always available to answer questions, discuss issues or help you and your staff navigate complex financial and accounting challenges.
- We strive to become an integral part of your team and become your trusted advisor.
To learn more about our outsourced accounting services and the approach we recommend for your nonprofit organization, please contact us for a free initial consultation.