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Matching Australian Accountants with World-class Graduates

The Secret to Baumgartner's Success in Offshoring.

ACCOUNTANT Baumgartners

COUNTRY Australia


The Back Room sat down with Aaron Fitchett, Partner at Baumgartners, a boutique accounting firm based in Victoria, Australia, to hear about their journey building an offshore team.

Established in the 1990s, Baumgartners have experienced a significant growth spurt over the past five years. With over 80 in the team Baumgartners provides a broad suite of tax, chartered accounting and audit services across a wide range of sectors. However, in recent years, their growth aspirations were stymied by a shortage of quality graduate accountants in Australia, driving hot competition for talent within the local industry. This prompted Baumgartners to look into offshoring to sustain growth and maintain their exemplary client service.


‘While it has taken time to build, we’re pleased with how it’s going and can really see the potential going forward.’

Aaron Fitchett Baumgartners
Aaron Fitchett

Partner, Baumgartners

From DIY to The Back Door

Baumgartners explored options in India and Vietnam before selecting The Back Room for their expertise in the offshore model. This decision was influenced by the need for a smaller, agile offshoring partner and was based on positive recommendations from another trusted Accounting firm, time zone compatibility, and local English proficiency. Their goal was to find an offshoring partner that provided the right level of support for their offshore expansion. After trying a few different approaches, working out which level of experience to hire for and honing their approach to training, they’ve now got their program down to a fine art. They treat their offshore team just as they would any local graduates out of Australia in terms of training and communication but enjoy the bonus of being able to access the best Accounting graduates from the Philippines’ much larger pool of emerging talent - thanks to the recruitment skills of The Back Room.

Baumgartners has doubled down on their own training program to help their graduates from the Philippines flourish, increasing staff loyalty and productivity. They ensure offshore staff are regarded and treated as integral members of the Baumgartners team, fostering a supportive, cohesive work culture across borders.

The benefits increase with every passing year

It can take a while to see the benefits when you make a big operational change and there are always lessons along the way. But now they can happily report this is a winning formula. They’ve enjoyed scalable growth: Baumgartners rapidly expanded its offshore team from 1 to 11 within 3 years.  But most of all they’ve seen incredible efficiency gains. The Back Room’s recruitment combined with Baumgartners’ investment in localised training and considered integration of their offshore staff into their local team has led to the revenue-to-cost ratio at over 4:1, almost double on shore staff.

Baumgartners have a lot to share from their experience

  • Investment in people: Baumgartners' success is largely due to its commitment to treating offshore staff as equals, investing in their development, and managing their integration carefully.
  • Training and quality control: Baumgartners' have found the greatest success in hiring fresh graduates and investing in their training, ensuring their skills and work ethic aligned with Baumgartners' standards and culture.
  • Communication and management: adjustments were made to address cultural differences in communication styles, particularly the Philippine team's discomfort with awkward conversations or conflict.
  • Direct feedback with The Back Room senior team: maintaining open communication with The Back Room and adjusting the approach was key to refining their offshoring model.
  • A partner on the ground makes all the difference:  there are many pitfalls and complexities to offshoring that can catch out local Accounting firms unfamiliar with local tax, HR and cultural differences.
Baumgartners group photo

‘The Back Room is a great way to get started. They've got a solution out of the box, we have a great line of communication, they're easy to deal with, flexible, and open to feedback.

Aaron, when asked about any advice he'd offer to a firm considering outsourcing.

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