Small business owners often start outsourcing with the misconception that someone who can “do-it-all” is the best solution on a limited budget. By taking that route, you assume that the individual you hire has equal expertise in marketing, accounting, finance, human relations, and task management to name just a few. It’s not until you’ve continually invested and discovered that they’re not nearly delivering the results expected that you consider that maybe a marketer should stay a marketer – and your accountant should be your accountant.
Outsourcing is a huge step and milestone in the growth of your business. Typically, when you’re ready to outsource, you have a certain amount of income-generating and the expectation of more. And, when you’re willing to outsource, you have the question of “what comes first?”
You will see plenty of resources explaining why the task you find the slightest joy in or take the most time should be the one you outsource first. In addition to their recommendations, you should consider the accuracy of which the task is being completed and could be completed. This is a key element in why you shouldn’t hire the jack of all trades.
Have you noticed that when you know a task like the back of your hand, you are more efficient and accurate with your actions in comparison to a task you do once a quarter? Tasks that you outsource hold the same quality. When someone – let’s say an office manager – tackles additional tasks that they’re unfamiliar with or lack expertise in – let’s say accounting – you lose a portion of that efficiency and accuracy, along with much more.
What happens when you outsource accounting to someone who is not an expert in the field?
A downside of combining departments, like office management and accounting, is the increased workload. An increased workload can lead to higher levels of stress, quicker burnout, and decreased productivity. With higher level of dissatisfaction, you’re more likely to deal with a high turnover rate for the role.
Departments, such as accounting, require a specific skill set to accurately accomplish their tasks. It also requires more time dedicated to staying up to date in specific areas regarding finances such as employment laws and small business programs that could save you and your business money come tax time. When someone is filling multiple roles, they do not have the ability to ensure that all their information is up to date and that your business is taking advantage of all the opportunities available to you.
When outsourcing your tasks or roles to a third party that claims to “handle it all” or you expect to handle it all, you run the risk of causing additional, unnecessary expenses. Hiring a jack of all trades instead of a specialist leads to more time and money spent on talen acquisition when you are ready for a specialist. Plus, depending on the department, you may be missing out on money-saving opportunities or industry insights that could have allowed your business to flourish during that period.
One of the first tasks, if not the most important, you need to outsource is accounting. When you outsource accounting, you get an overview of your money management and financial health. You’ll see your income and expenses and be able to decisively determine where you should invest your money and time and where you can save.