Take the bite out of number-crunching
by outsourcing accounting, bookkeeping
you've been thinking of outsourcing your company's basic financial
tasks, you're not alone. Increasingly, small businesses are turning
to accounting and bookkeeping firms to take care of their day-to-day
Bookkeepers and accountants can act as a company's
financial compass. They compile and analyze a company's financial
reports, map a company's progress and help a business chart the
best course to the future.
What's more, they make tax time a lot easier.
Bookkeepers record a company's daily financial transactions
and produce monthly financial statements; accountants prepare financial
statements and help with tax planning and preparation. Accountants
also will help prepare investor, loan or financing packages.
We found prices for data entry beginning at
$25 an hour, bookkeepers charging around $35 an hour and accountant
fees ranging from $45 to $190 an hour.
and only accounting
You can save on accounting fees by asking your accountant to do
the accounting and nothing more. You don't want to pay accounting
fees for a bookkeeping task.
A client's bill increases proportionately with
the hours needed to accomplish the task. The bearer of organized
records will pay less than the guy who shows up with a shoebox full
of check stubs and receipts.
Barbara Freid, a Los Angeles-based bookkeeper
who caters to fledgling and small businesses, says "hand-holding"
is one of her specialties.
"I tell them to make a file called 'Barbara'
for check stubs, receipts, deposit receipts and anything they have
a question about," Freid explains. In addition to providing data
entry and producing monthly financial statements for her clients,
Freid meets with them each month to review the information and answer
any questions they may have.
Though each company is different, Freid says
a small company with fewer than two employees could expect to pay
around $150 a month for such a service.
Bookkeepers produce information accountants
need to do their jobs. Sometimes accounting firms will also provide
bookkeeping services. If you hire an independent bookkeeper, you
will want your bookkeeper to touch base with your accountant.
-- Posted: Dec. 13, 1999