5 Things to do Before Hiring a Bookkeeper for Your Growth-Focused Small Business

Entrepreneurship, while focused on the founder or owner of a business, is a team sport. The entrepreneur is similar to the quarterback or head coach. An individual coach or quarterback can experience individual success, but the rest of the team is needed in order to actually compete with the best and win championships.

Hiring is a necessary step in building a business bigger than yourself and competing to win. Trusting others is the only way to accomplish this.

Giving up control to someone and trusting them, especially someone new to your team, is not easy. But, as much as you may try, you can’t keep doing every task your business needs to survive and operate legally while growing at the same time.

Hiring is scary, in part because you know that the wrong hire, whether bringing on the wrong person or hiring for the wrong position, can set your business back months and thousands of dollars.

When going through the process of hiring a bookkeeper or financial team to handle your business’ bookkeeping, or even before deciding to do it yourself, there are several things to consider, and things to do prior to finalizing your decision.

–          Understand Exactly What You Need

To hire the perfect bookkeeping solution, you have to know what that looks like for your company. If you don’t understand what your company needs, It’s impossible to find the solution.

Discovering what you need from your accounting system requires knowing both your bookkeeping requirements (state and federal taxes, industry-related requirements) and financial goals for the business. These two pieces of information will help you determine what you need.

For example, if you want to grow your business tenfold in the next five years, you will need the assistance of a CPA to file your taxes and have the capability of quickly growing your financial team due to the extreme growth you’re seeking. The first bookkeeper you hire on must be able to look ahead and to create plans and identify metrics that the company must meet in order to grow, and keep close track of your profit margin, revenue, and expenses as you climb closer to your goals.

–          Organize the Information You Have

Before you throw out those shoeboxes in your closet, make sure you’ve taken out your receipts and financial notes on napkins. Your future hire will have an uphill battle learning about your business, going through the training that you provide, and staying on top of transactions. Make their job easier and increase their ability to succeed by providing them with all of the information they need, even if it’s not all neat and tidy in a cloud accounting or paper-based bookkeeping system.

–          Know Your Strengths and Weaknesses

The smaller your team, the more vital every single hire is to your business. If you have three employees, you’re likely to spend a lot of time working with each member of your team. The bookkeeper you hire should complement your skillset, not be a carbon copy. By knowing what you stink at, you can hire to compensate, plugging up the holes in your business so you can move forward.

–          Put Checks and Balances in Place

It doesn’t matter who your bookkeeper is, you need to have some kind of verification that they are handling your finances properly. In many industries, a simple and honest mistake can appear to an auditor as fraud or misappropriation of funds, which can be devastating for a business. Even if you trust your bookkeeper to be completely honest, mistakes happen, and there needs to be someone to catch and correct mistakes other than the sole person handling the books for your business.

–          Plan How You Will Train and Manage the New Employee

Every business, even in a specific industry, is unique. Even if you’re hiring an experienced and talented bookkeeper, they will need both training and management to get the most out of them for your business. Plan a portion of your week to work with the new employee and guide them outside of their initial training.

Hiring a bookkeeper is a big decision and commitment, but it’s not your only option. If you’re interested in exploring how a virtual bookkeeping team like Kahuna Accounting could be an asset for your small business, contact us today!

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