In 2022, the new challenge for Australian businesses and NFPs as they battle Covid-19 repercussions and try to rebuild is simply having sufficient personnel to function well.
There are many benefits of outsourced accounting in ordinary times, where an organisation hires a qualified external accounts team to carry out tasks and manage the accounts and finance functions. With the current staff shortages across Australia, there are even more advantages to having an outsourced accounts team on board.
Key impacts being felt across Australia and how an outsourced accounts team can help
Since the easing of restrictions that resulted in escalating Covid-19 case numbers across most of Australia, staff shortages have been exceptionally high. Small to medium businesses and NFPs have struggled to operate normally due to absent staff who are either ailing or close contacts of Covid-19 cases. Organisations that could typically draw on a pool of casual workers are confronting the same underlying issue – there are fewer people across the board who are available for work.
Outsourced accounts teams are designed to maximise the potential of NFPs and businesses regardless of internal pressures. Having a reliable, remote team of professionals ready to support critical areas of businesses operation makes sense in an unstable and fast-changing environment. Taking the pressure off other areas of the business also empowers employees to focus on key operational roles.
Broken links in supply chains
A widespread problem connected to staff shortages is that many supply chains are starting to break. Unavoidably absent staff contribute to businesses of all kinds losing the capacity to function normally. In accounts, the broken link might be a few staff members who aren’t there to update the books in time – or just one key person who isn’t there to authorise payments.
Outsourced accounts teams utilise technology that will keep businesses running smoothly. Cloud accounting allows approved personnel 24-hour remote access to relevant data and figures. The ability to track cashflow is particularly relevant in times of uncertainty.
The great resignation
Hopefully, Australia will avoid the experience of countries hard-hit by Covid-19 fatalities during the pre-vaccination period, having to react to a shocking loss of personnel. However, the phenomenon dubbed ‘the great resignation’ where workers leave jobs at historic rates seems to have been experienced here. The number of workers leaving the workforce permanently or temporarily or ‘job hopping’ has increased, and this change has signalled a new vulnerability for the Australian economy.
Outsourcing is the solution to staff departures. For example, the outsourced accounts team is a collective rather than one person doing bookkeeping/accounting, so you can avoid key person dependency. The outsourced team members use current technology and have prepared the processes and training to ensure that someone who knows the ropes steps in where required. The team solution provides multiple touchpoints that provide surety.
Futureproofing becomes even harder
Ongoing skilled labour shortages are likely to continue. External fixes for the situation may not appear soon, as there are still barriers to skilled workers arriving from overseas.
It will also take time and resources to train up the younger generation of Australian workers.
Outsourced accounting teams help organisations sidestep the ongoing skilled labour shortages. They make the most of automated tasks, reducing account-keeping labour and costs.
Next Dimension’s outsourced accounts team is also on top of training. The team members are up to date with current software and financial/accounting regulations. They are equipped with prepared training modules and the skills to train your team members with the software and processes they need to know.
In addition, your outsourced accounts team also has the capacity to make the contribution of a CFO with knowledge of the regulatory environment. For example, the team can advise on the latest government funding for businesses hit by the pandemic and help with the paperwork. We can explore the best ways to use increased government funding to make your business or NFP stronger in the future.
The hope is for the Covid-19 understaffing crisis to flatten soon. In the meantime, a strong and agile outsourced accounts team will put you in a better position to cope with the slings, arrows and changing conditions of the future.
Next Dimension Accounting provides outsourced accounting services to make businesses and not-for-profits more resilient. Contact us to learn how our team can help.