So, youâ€™ve decided that BPO (Business Process Outsourcing) is the right fit for your business? Or maybe youâ€™re still doing some ground-work on the research front? Either way, the decision should not only depend on â€˜whyâ€™ accountancy outsourcing works, but also â€˜howâ€™.
Here are five ways how to get your business prepared and ready for the exciting changes ahead.
1. Document the workflow
One of the best places to start is your workflow management process. Using a workflow tool or a simple word document, map the client or job process from start to finish â€“ how it will move through your business. Include which role or department has the responsibility of each step.
2. Define the scope
Once youâ€™ve broken the workflow management process down into each step, it will become more obvious what tasks or gaps that outsourcing could fill and how a task would transition from your business to your outsourcing partner and vice versa. Itâ€™s also important to identify and communicate if there are any curveballs in the workload that can be ironed out early on. Outsourcing works most effectively when it is specific and task-based so there is no room for ambiguity â€“ you have a clear understanding of what youâ€™re investing in and can see positive results.
3. Instruction delivery
Training is a time-consuming process but the results speak volumes. Start by analyzing the steps and tasks which youâ€™ve defined in the scope of works to establish the training thatâ€™s required. Both written and video instructions are highly useful. You could get one person within your business to take care of a training manual, or have all employees contribute relevant information and get a contractor to format the information. Some options to present the training information are:
- a portal, such as Google sites
- a video channel, such as YouTube
- a document, such as a pdf manual.
If you were hiring a new employee in the office, youâ€™d have a general expectation around time spent training. Take this same mindset into outsourcing; yes, your outsource team are trained in their profession, but theyâ€™ll need the opportunity to learn your business to get things running as streamlined as possible. Take your time, donâ€™t rush the implementation and training process and youâ€™ll get the best results for your business.
4. Software implementation
Having a suitable, effective cloud-based accounting or workflow management software will make all the difference with your outsource implementation. If your employees and outsource team can easily update data, communicate regarding tasks and track client records, daily business will run much more smoothly. There are some fantastic workflow management cloud-based options available that integrate with Xero, to create a tidy software package for your business. Ensuring your software is secure should also be a key consideration. If your software is due an upgrade, itâ€™s worth tackling that earlier rather than later in your outsourcing journey!
5. Set your KPIâ€™s
Itâ€™s important to keep the â€˜whyâ€™ at the forefront when going ahead with outsourcing. Set yourself some clearly defined goals and key performance indicators around the process and take the time to monitor them. Is the process maintaining financial viability? Are employees happier in their workload? Are your clients satisfied? Set up a monitoring strategy before starting the outsource process.
This list covers the basics, but if youâ€™re looking for more tips on how to get prepared for outsourcing feel free to get in touch at any time â€“ weâ€™d love to help out. Get in touch or try our Outsourcing Readiness Tool.