Updated: Nov 23
In today's globalized business landscape, offshore outsourcing has become a common practice for companies looking to reduce costs, access specialized skills, and focus on their core competencies. Accounting, in particular, is one area where many businesses choose to outsource offshore to save time and resources. While offshore outsourcing can offer numerous benefits, it also comes with its fair share of concerns and challenges. Let's explore the top 5 accounting offshore outsourcing concerns that companies should consider before making the leap.
1. Data Security Concerns
Ensuring the safeguarding of sensitive financial data is of paramount importance within the realm of accounting. When considering offshore outsourcing, apprehensions regarding potential data breaches, adherence to data privacy regulations, and the outsourcing partner's capability to uphold robust cybersecurity measures often arise.
When selecting an outsourcing partner, it is imperative to thoroughly assess their commitment to protecting client data. At GFT, we have implemented a comprehensive set of security features and protocols for each member of our outsourced staff. These include:
Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): We employ 2FA to enhance authentication processes, adding an extra layer of security.
Password Protection with Mandatory Quarterly Resets: Our strict policy mandates quarterly password resets, reducing the risk associated with long-standing or compromised passwords.
Microsoft Intune for Comprehensive Endpoint Management: Through Microsoft Intune, we ensure meticulous management of endpoints, maintaining security across all devices.
Identity and Access Management: Our rigorous identity and access management system carefully controls who can access sensitive data and under what conditions.
Remote Wipe and Retire Capabilities: In the event of a device being lost or stolen, we have the capacity to remotely wipe or retire it, ensuring data remains secure.
Stringent Security Baselines: We adhere to strict security baselines, setting high standards for the protection of sensitive information.
Mobile Application Management (MAM): Our MAM framework allows for the effective management and security of mobile applications.
Annual Training on Phishing: Our team undergoes annual training sessions focused on recognizing and mitigating phishing threats, bolstering our cybersecurity defenses.
By implementing these security measures at the application level, we guarantee that client data remains protected at all times. Our unwavering commitment to data security enables us to provide our clients with the peace of mind they need when entrusting us with their sensitive financial information.
2. Quality of Service Concerns
Ensuring the consistent quality of accounting services is a top concern when considering outsourcing. It's essential to guarantee that the offshore provider maintains the same level of accuracy and attention to detail as an in-house team. To achieve this, regular audits and performance monitoring are essential practices.
When seeking an outsourcing partner, it's crucial to select one that is led and operated by individuals with extensive expertise in the accounting profession. Many outsourcing companies offer a wide range of business process services, but they often function as recruiting agencies rather than experts in specific fields. These types of outsourcing partners may struggle to maintain high-quality service because they lack firsthand experience in the domain.
At GFT, our ownership and management team are comprised of seasoned professionals with a wealth of experience in setting up and managing the financial operations of businesses. Our leadership has expertise in areas such as Controllership, Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A), restructuring, ERP implementation, Audit, and Operations. We take pride in our ability to oversee and manage professionals who share our background and expertise. This unique advantage positions us to deliver top-tier accounting services consistently.
3. Communication Barriers
Effective communication can be challenging when working with offshore teams, often due to time zone differences and language barriers. These challenges can lead to misunderstandings and delays, ultimately impacting the efficiency of the accounting process.
One way to address this concern is to select an outsourcing partner located in a developing nation that shares a common language with your company. GFT is such a partner, based in the Philippines. The Philippines stands out for its remarkable proficiency in the English language, a proficiency cultivated over many decades of American influence and a well-established education system that places a strong emphasis on English language skills.
This high level of English proficiency in the Philippines greatly diminishes language barriers when collaborating with our offshore accounting team. It facilitates seamless communication, allowing for efficient and effective exchanges of information, instructions, and insights. By choosing an outsourcing partner like GFT in the Philippines, businesses can significantly reduce the communication challenges often associated with offshore outsourcing, ensuring a smoother and more productive accounting process.
4. Cultural Differences
Navigating cultural disparities in work practices, ethics, and communication styles can pose challenges when collaborating with an offshore team. Building a harmonious working relationship requires a significant investment of time and effort.
In the case of the Philippines, its culture has been substantially influenced by the West, particularly through decades of American presence. This Western influence has shaped the work culture and communication norms in the Philippines, making it more compatible with businesses from English-speaking countries.
At GFT, our unique advantage lies in the fact that our organization is founded and managed by Filipino Americans. This blend of cultural backgrounds enables us to bridge the gap between the two cultures effectively, facilitating a seamless working relationship. It allows us to find common ground, understand nuances, and navigate any cultural differences that may arise during our collaboration. This cultural synergy ensures that businesses partnering with GFT can achieve a harmonious and productive working relationship with our Filipino team members, ultimately contributing to the success of their outsourcing endeavors.
5. Change Management
Transitioning to fully or partially outsourced financial operations can be a daunting undertaking for any organization. A significant pain point in these initiatives often revolves around change management, especially when it comes to operational processes. Shifting from internal accounting processes to an external provider or offshore location necessitates meticulous planning, open communication, and adaptability to ensure a seamless transition.
At GFT, we take a proactive approach to address change management challenges. We appoint change management leaders or champions who play a pivotal role in overseeing the transition, addressing concerns, and ensuring that operational processes align seamlessly with the new outsourcing/offshoring model. Our transition process follows a structured flow:
Process Mapping: We initiate the transition by conducting a comprehensive mapping of existing accounting processes. This step involves a detailed examination to identify areas that require adaptation or streamlining to align with the new outsourcing/offshoring model.
Documentation: Thorough documentation is a cornerstone of our transition strategy. We meticulously document accounting processes, including the formulation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) and best practices. This documentation is made readily accessible to the offshore team and is continuously updated to reflect any changes or optimizations.
Training and Knowledge Transfer: We place a strong emphasis on training and knowledge transfer to ensure a smooth transition. Our comprehensive training programs not only cover technical skills but also instill a deep understanding of our client's organization's culture, values, and expectations within the offshore team.
Quality Control Protocols: To maintain the desired standards of excellence, we implement robust quality control protocols. This includes the establishment of performance monitoring mechanisms to rigorously assess and enhance the quality of accounting operations.
Communication Framework: Effective communication is essential during the transition. We create a well-defined communication framework that bridges any time zone gaps and accommodates language differences. Leveraging collaboration tools and scheduling regular meetings are key components of this framework, facilitating seamless and efficient communication.
Technology Integration: To support the integration of accounting processes across multiple locations, we invest in cutting-edge technology solutions. We not only adopt these tools but also provide comprehensive training and ongoing support to ensure their successful utilization.
By adhering to this structured transition process, we ensure that our clients experience a smooth and well-managed shift to outsourcing/offshoring. Our commitment to change management allows organizations to navigate this transition with confidence, knowing that their operational processes will seamlessly align with the new model, ultimately contributing to their success in outsourcing or offshoring financial operations.
Navigating the complexities of offshore outsourcing in the realm of accounting can be challenging, but with the right partner, it becomes an opportunity for growth and efficiency. GFT stands out as a trusted and reliable offshore accounting partner, offering a comprehensive suite of solutions designed to address your concerns and exceed your expectations.
When you choose GFT as your outsourcing partner, you gain access to:
Proven Expertise: Our team is comprised of seasoned professionals who are experts in financial operations, ensuring the highest level of accuracy, compliance, and efficiency in your accounting processes.
Cultural Synergy: With a strong Western influence in the Philippines and a leadership team that bridges both cultures, we create a harmonious working relationship that minimizes cultural differences and maximizes collaboration.
Robust Security: We prioritize data security, implementing stringent measures and protocols to safeguard your sensitive financial information.
Effective Change Management: Our structured approach to change management ensures a seamless transition to outsourcing/offshoring, guaranteeing that your operational processes align with the new model.
Clear Communication: We establish clear communication frameworks that bridge time zone gaps and accommodate language differences, ensuring that you stay connected with our team.
At GFT, we understand that every business is unique. Our tailored solutions and commitment to excellence ensure that your accounting needs are not only met but exceeded. As a trusted partner, we are dedicated to helping you streamline your financial operations, reduce costs, and achieve your strategic goals.
Contact us today and get free profiles of potential candidates for your outsourced team.