What to do if COVID has decreased your finance staff?

Let’s admit it, this has been a rough time for finance departments. Remote work environments have made collaboration with colleagues and staff morale a challenge. If you’re lucky you’ve been able to retain your finance staff through this challenging time. If you aren’t so lucky, you may have lost a key person or two, and more responsibility has fallen on your desk as a result.

Here are some strategies to help get through this difficult time.

Outsource the high level management tasks: Sometimes the day to day business function is the priority, and the high level analysis falls by the wayside, due to increased demands on time.  If you just need an experienced pair of eyes for a few hours to run and analyze reports and make recommendations on a weekly, monthly basis, there are organizations that offer outsourced CFO/Controller services and can help pick up the slack. Especially in volatile times like these, having some experienced outside eyes can help with strategic planning and ideas that your organization might not have the time and energy to think about, despite having a definite need for it.

Outsource the daily bookkeeping tasks: Conversely, your organization might be calling on you for the high level analysis, and what you desperately need is someone to manage the day to day. Outsourced accounting services are a common service offering for many organizations, and some might even specialize in the modern cloud-based solution you are using, which makes the learning curve shorter. Handing off the mundane day to day, can leave you with plenty of time to help your organization manage through the challenges of a smaller finance staff, until such time as you can ramp up again.

Accounting Project Work: Was there a project or strategic initiative that was left my the wayside because the person in charge was furloughed or let go? Is this project or initiative still extremely important to the organization? This would be a great time to bring someone in part-time to manage the project for you. There are highly skilled consultants that can pick right up where the project left off, and often even add additional insights to the direction or organization of the project going forward. With the right expertise, it could be very easy for someone to come in and pick up where your employee left off, and keep the organization on track.

Outsourcing isn’t new, but over the past few months it has become an increasingly efficient and effective way to handle fluctuations in staff levels due to COVID, and other business challenges.

At Michaud Accounting Solutions, we offer outsourced accounting services, project services, and CFO/Controller services and have extensive experience with cloud based solutions including Sage Intacct.  We’d love to help.