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Topics: Industry, Outsourcing, Tax

Shortlisting Tax Outsourcing Providers? Here Are 7 Questions You Must Ask.

4 MIN READ | Posted on November 05, 2021
Written By Rukmani Krishna

Tax outsourcing

Tax season is one of the most challenging times for accountants across the UK. Excessive workloads, tight deadlines, and endless work hours are just a few of the challenges facing accounting firms. Add to this a severe shortage of manpower, lack of business skills, and a high cost of recruiting and training new staff, you might find yourself short-changed with no end in sight. Are you struggling with any of these issues? If you said yes, then we have a solution for you: outsourcing. A tax outsourcing company can help your business meet client expectations on time, increase its productivity, and meet deadlines with a quick turnaround time. Sounds great? But, how do you choose the right tax outsourcing company for your specific needs?

Today, there are plenty of tax outsourcing companies in the market. Initially, it might seem challenging to pick the right one for your business. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of seven questions that you should ask potential tax outsourcing providers.

1. What type of tax preparation software are you familiar with?

Different companies work with different types of tax preparation software. There’s no single universal solution. It’s important to ascertain whether the shortlisted company can work with the software your accounting firm uses. Companies that are technology agnostic will be able to better serve you better as they will still be relevant for your firm when you decide to change the software you are currently using. Ensure you ask for a list of various tax preparation software used by the tax outsourcing firm.

2. How do you protect client data? Do you have any contingency plans in place?

Data security is of utmost importance for any business, especially an accounting firm. Some measures that you should look for include GDPR compliance, ISO 27001 compliance, non-disclosure agreements signed by employees, strong security measures to protect data and sensitive information, and contingency plans in case of any of issues. Don’t forget to check where your company data is stored and if there are any redundancies.

3. What type of returns do you process? What level of expertise does your staff have with different types of returns?

One of the main reasons for outsourcing tax requirements is to get it done by experts. So, it’s necessary to check into the experience of the provider and its staff. Ask the outsourcing company about the types of tax returns they are well-versed in as well as the overall work experience of their staff.

4. How much volume of work can you handle?

When you begin talks with potential outsourcing companies, it’s a good idea to have an estimate of how much work you’re planning to outsource to them. Once you have this number in place, speak to the outsourcing partner about the volume of work they can take on.

It doesn’t make sense to send them a huge volume of work if they won’t be able to complete it on time. Furthermore, it’s important to check whether they’ll be able to take on additional work if needed. To get a better understanding of their work capacity, ask them about the average volume processed over previous tax seasons.

5. What is your average turnaround time?

The turnaround time is crucial because your firm is running at an extremely fast pace during the tax season. It’s important to have a reliable partner who can turnaround your returns within a short time. When speaking to a potential partner, it’s a good idea to have an expected turnaround time so that you can better decide who to go with.

6. What level of visibility will I have into the progress of the assigned work?

It’s crucial for your business to have some amount of visibility into the progress of assigned tasks. In order to know how things are progressing, speak to the outsourcing partner about the ways in which you can get regular progress updates. An outsourcing company that offers an automated workflow is a good choice as you’ll get on-demand and real-time visibility into the status of your work.

7. What other services do you provide?

Your initial business requirements may solely be related to the tax season but you might want to use the outsourcing company for other accounting-related tasks in the future. Check with them about their various offerings like accounting and bookkeeping. It’s also important to get references from previous clients about the potential partner to make a more informed decision.

Conclusion

Finding the right outsourcing partner will feel like an extension of your own firm. So, it’s important to do your due diligence when shopping for a potential outsourcing provider. Remember to ask them the questions we’ve mentioned above to check whether they’re a good fit for your firm.

An experienced and accomplished outsourcing partner like QXAS will ensure that you’ll be able to operate efficiently during the tax season and offer high-quality returns to your clients. QXAS offers a comprehensive range of tax outsourcing services, including self-assessment, VAT, bookkeeping, and corporate taxes.

If you have any queries about tax outsourcing, reach out to our tax experts at [email protected] or call +44 208 146 0808.

Rukmani Krishna

After a short stint with journalism, Rukmani found her calling in content. From content writing to content editing and now content marketing, she has worked in several content-related roles across sectors, such as business news, general news, online education, and digital therapeutics. Currently, she’s focused on creating relevant and useful content for accountants to help them better navigate their outsourcing journey.

Originally published Nov 05, 2021 10:11:01, updated Nov 11 2021

Topics: Industry, Outsourcing, Tax


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