When myself and my business partner retired from a large UK accountancy practice based in Canary Wharf to set up on our own, we knew that we wanted to do things slightly differently. After 20 years of handling the headaches which come with employing your own staff, we wondered whether we could grow our practice without having a large payroll. We decided to take the unusual step of investigating whether outsourcing could completely and reliably service all our client’s work, whilst we retained the client relationship and this also gave us the time to continue to give the specialist tax and accounting advice that was so valuable to our clients.
As you can imagine, this was a big change for us. Initially, we could only think about reasons why it would go wrong. After all, we didn’t want to risk any of our long term client relationships just to save a few bucks. We had acted for these clients for many years and they had shown remarkable trust and loyalty in all of them asking us to continue to act for them in our new company Tout & Brew Limited. We spent a long time with Arun and his team understanding how it would work with them becoming our back office and in effect, our staff. They were incredibly patient and we decided to go ahead partly because their 15+ years of experience and credibility with the firms that they work for already. It gives us peace of mind that their UK staff are only a phone call away.
We are glad to made the decision to go with outsourcing at the start of our new practice because we had the time to get it right. It can be tempting when the pressure is off to delay setting up an outsourcing relationship. However, you want this in place and working well before you hit a peak time.
Our practice is now established and giving us the profitable business we anticipated. We have the lovely position of having enough clients to truly service them well, whilst being able to develop our skills and contacts further in the UK and international tax consultancy area which is a major focus for us. As well as adding UK based client assignments such as advising on Company acquisitions and sales, and reorganisations, company purchase of own shares and obtaining related successful tax clearances we have had the opportunity to take on work from Australian, German, Singaporean and Canadian based clients which is a testament to the flexibility of the GI offering. GI has meant we are able to profitably service our clients and add more without the headache of having staff or large premises to manage. We’ve calculated we’ve probably saved over 30% on our costs by using GI rather than employing our own staff. The beauty of working with GI is they flex up and down based on our peaks and troughs. We are not tied into a minimal number of hours every month with them. Looking back, we realise that our biggest barrier was our resistance to change. However, we are glad we took the risk as it would be difficult to grow what we have now without doing something radically different.
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