Should You Outsource Bookkeeping or Keep Someone In-House?


One of the biggest questions companies face over and over is whether to use outsourcing or in-house hires to fill gaps in their teams. While it’s a question that comes up for many different positions in many different departments, we’ve found that there’s one area in particular that tends to trip people up: bookkeeping.


Should you outsource your bookkeeping tasks, or keep someone in-house? It’s a big question—one that can shape the way your company does business. The truth is, there are pros and cons for both options. Before you make this decision, it’s important to understand what you’re getting into. Here are the things you should consider.


Outsourced bookkeeping

Outsourcing can be a great way to get important work done without going through the hassle of recruiting, hiring, and onboarding a new team member. Before you outsource your bookkeeping, keep these pros and cons in mind:


  • PRO: Reduced risk of fraud. Taking bookkeeping duties outside of your company creates separation that can help reduce your risk of fraud. Many independent bookkeeping operations separate responsibilities (e.g. one person reconciles bank accounts while another pays the bills), so you can feel confident that you aren’t placing all the financial power with one person.
  • PRO: Fewer errors. Additionally, multiple eyes on your books means reduced risk of errors. Ideally, an outsourced bookkeeping company will have processes in place that help them check and double check each other’s work, so they can be sure it’s accurate. An outsourced firm lives and breathes by their reputation, so they’ll be extremely careful when it comes to accuracy.
  • CON: Not as much access. Need a last minute bookkeeping task done quickly? An outsourced bookkeeping firm probably can’t get to it as quickly as an in-house team can. If you find that your bookkeeping needs and processes are changing quickly or frequently, working with an outsourced team will be a much bigger hassle.


In-house bookkeeping

Outsourced bookkeeping is a great option for many companies, but for others, having an in-house bookkeeper or bookkeeping team might still be the best bet. Here are pros and cons to bringing your bookkeeping in-house:


  • PRO: Customized bookkeeping solutions. In-house bookkeeping means you’re in control of how your bookkeeping is done. Making small changes or adjustments to your process is within your power at all times. And, with everything in-house, questions can be answered, and problems resolved, quickly.
  • PRO: Loyalty and culture. When you hire an in-house employee, you’re going to look for someone who is not only a culture fit, but who is going to be loyal to your company and always keep its best interests in mind. While an outsourced firm will still do good work for you, their main loyalty will always lie with their own company, not with yours. Keeping things in-house also means that your company’s sensitive information stays on the inside.
  • CON: Cost. Once you factor in an employee’s total compensation package, it’s likely that outsourcing is going to be your most cost-friendly option—especially if your bookkeeping is complicated or requires specialized skill. Highly experienced and skilled bookkeepers don’t exactly come cheap. Plus, with an outsourced firm, you can pay for what you need, instead of paying an in-house bookkeeper’s full salary. 


Whether you choose to outsource your bookkeeping or keep things in-house, make sure you find the right person or company to do the job. Work with a professional recruiting agency, like EDI Staffing, to help you make the best hiring decision for your company’s needs. 


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