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CAAS Is More Than Outsourced Accounting

CAAS Is More Than Outsourced Accounting

What do you think of when you hear the words client accounting and advisory services (CAAS)? Do you think payroll, bank reconciliations, or maybe 1099 reporting services? All of those are part of CAAS, but those services are just the beginning. In the latest cpa.com CAAS benchmark survey, CAAS practices reported a median growth rate of 20%, which is nearly twice the growth rate reported in 2018 and significantly higher than other accounting firm practices. Why the growth? Over the past three to four years, CAAS practices have expanded from bookkeeping and financial statement prep to leveraging technology and processes to provide timely updates and deeper business insights. CAAS practices now deliver higher value and deepen the trusted advisor relationship.

That probably sounds good, but for many, it's hard to know whether or not CAAS is a good fit. Think about your current situation, your pain points and opportunities and ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do you have too many staff members doing transactional work?
  2. Are you spending too much time filling in the gaps for your accounting staff?
  3. Are you experiencing challenges hiring and keeping qualified talent?
  4. Are your accounting processes paper-based and manual?
  5. Do you want to make improvements in productivity and efficiency?
  6. Do you feel like you're always playing catch-up?
  7. Is your technology outdated and/or on-premise?
  8. Are you manually updating data from different systems?
  9. Can you and your team access your system remotely?
  10. Do you need assistance with a transaction (merger, acquisition, financing)?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, considering CAAS might be a good solution for you. CAAS offerings are varied and customizable depending on your situation. The goal of any good CAAS practice is to take a collaborative approach to digitally transform your back office and provide a variety of services to add value to your business.

In addition to the services that quickly come to mind when considering CAAS like financial statement prep, accounts payable and receivable, reconciliations and sales tax filings, consider these additional services:

CFO and controller services. Instead of day-to-day accounting tasks, maybe you need help with the bigger picture; financial oversight, benchmarking and process improvement, financial modeling, transaction assistance, investor and banking relations, dashboard reporting with key performance indicators (KPIs) and system selection and implementation. An outsourced CFO or Controller truly becomes part of your management team, providing critical business advice and daily interaction.

Technology solutions deployment. Maybe it's not the personnel you need but systems and processes. Digital transformation is a top priority for many. To continue improving and enhancing financial operational efficiencies, embracing automation is necessary to achieve your business goals. Selecting and implementing new technologies is difficult, but the idea of an accounts payable workflow to route, approve and disburse invoices through an entirely electronic automated process should sound appealing. Or maybe you just need assistance going from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks online; no matter the accounting technology solution you need, CAAS can assist.

Perhaps you think you're not ready for CAAS because your books are behind, and you don't want to bring in a third party until you're caught up? That's exactly when you should bring in a resource to help you clean up, catch up and create a go-forward plan. CAAS will take over time-consuming financial tasks and provide you with timely and accurate information so you can focus on the future of your business and its strategic goals.

UHY's CAAS practice has highly experienced professionals ready to help you digitally transform your technology and processes to achieve greater efficiencies. Reach out to Kane Polakoff, National CAAS Practice Leader, for more information or an initial assessment.

 

06/06/2022

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