A good cause outsourcing – What to consider:
Charities are increasingly planning to outsource their internal function/services. It has become more urgent in today’s difficult funding environment. We have been providing outsourced accounting and financial management solutions to charities for some times. While outsourcingtips has broadly benefited to all charities to reduce costs as well as improve efficiency. However , the level of gains from outsourcing ranges. From our experience, here are few issues that you need to think of while outsourcing to ensure that you gain maximum from the outsourcing conclusion;
Outsourcing motive: Why do you want to outsource? Cost reduction reason remains the prime reason, but it does not have to be the only one. Anyway, outsourcing does not suit everyone, therefore , consider your circumstances properly.
Expectations: Make sure that you know what you expect from your outsourcing provider. Like regarding your regular reports such as “Monthly Management Accounts”, be obvious, be evident from the outset the format, contents and timetable for getting the report to you.
What are you outsourcing? This is a fundamental area of outsourcing to remind all that you are outsourcing some exercises, process but the overall financial management responsibility remains to you.
Partnerships: Build a partnership with your outsourcer to achieve charity assignment. If you just treat them a service provider then usually the benefit is less for the African Charity.
Charity knowledge and motivation to your cause: It is essential and indeed makes life much easier after they outsourcer have in-depth knowledge of charity operating environment and your charity’s specific operational challenges.
Your named contact man: Make sure that you have named contact person to discuss any marketing or contract aspect of your charity. Do you have access to this person anytime?
Regular meeting/interactions: How often you meet the outsourcer to review issues of your accounting (e. g. management accounts, etc) or services. This makes a big difference to the charities.
Turnaround stretch of time: Make sure that the outsourcer turnaround timeframe are incorporated inside service level agreements. For example , when you have a query, what is the time-scehdule the outsourcer must respond?
Contract lengths: It works very well when you enter on a shorter contract. While a longer commitment is good for outsourcer but it not often benefits the charity. A new shorter contract always ensures a continuous effort from outsourcer to improve service. In this uncertain charity funding environment a good cause trustees need to minimise their exposure to liabilities.
Terminating the actual contract: You need to have clear cuts understanding what happens when you shut down contracts. Are there any hidden costs or hindrance for you when you choose to terminate the contract? What happens to your records, papers, etc . and how they are handed back to you.