By Mark Thomas of Compumenn Group
We have dealt with Ahead For Business (AFB) for almost 20 years. They have assisted in our growth, brought stability and proper process to our accounting and are trustworthy and reliable. The expanse of 4 drawer filing cabinets and mountains of paper have all gone. I truly appreciate everything they have done and continue to do for us. AFB is a vital part of our management team.
Challenging Traditional Thinking
As Compumenn Group grew, I considered the need of an in-house accounts department. I needed :
- A Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for interaction with me and other directors, management reporting, budgeting and cashflow
- A junior accountant for the “leg work” and sales, receipts and payments
- A junior clerk for purchasing
- An external accountant and tax agent for financial reporting and tax
The cost per annum would be around $350,000.
This may be justifiable for large corporations. But for a business like ours, with a turnover around $12m, this is expensive. The staff would likely be under-utilised due to seasonal fluctuations and the knowledge base within the business would be limited to those employees (skill gap).
Ahead For Business will be our accounts department. It will provide all the above services and more and at a lower cost.
The skills, experience and logistics benefits
Ahead For Business provides us with all the skills and experience that a traditional accounts department provides. But they also fill the in-house skills gap :
- As auditors skilled in systems, AFB applied their knowledge to review, update and document our systems. The accounting process is now paperless and streamlined with reporting and documentation available to all approved personnel electronically
- As tax agents, AFB undertakes tax planning on an on-going basis as well as period end compliance
- Their experience covers many and varied businesses. They bring different and new ideas and practical solutions
The cost benefits
Each staff member at AFB deals directly with Compumenn Group staff. Communication is good and this leads to effective and efficient use of time. And, as all accounting and tax tasks are performed under the one roof, everything takes less time and we save money.
We pay Ahead For Business fees as :
- A fixed monthly fee for standard work and
- Charge for time spent on additional assignments
This fee structure means that we only pay for the time AFB spends on Compumenn Group tasks. The cost of accounting department is now around $140,000 per year.
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