How to tell when it’s time to hire an accountant [infographic]

For many small business owners, the decision to hire a bookkeeper or an accountant comes after about a year in business.  At that point, you’ve become too busy and realize bookkeeping is something you really don’t have an interest in doing since your time can be better spent elsewhere.

This is a helpful infographic created by Tammy Lam and posted on the intuit QuickBooks website ( on the decision to outsource.  While it’s positioned as hiring an accountant, many of the day-to-day tasks (invoicing, accounts payable) would typically be considered bookkeeping; check out this recent post that describes the difference between bookkeeping and accounting “Bookkeeper or accountant. Which one do I need for my business?”


outsource bookkeepingSource:

My thoughts:

The per hour rate is very high for a firm of our size operating in Durham Region; we charge a fraction of this and prefer to provide a fixed fee arrangement in order to provide you with a predictable fee you can plan for.

I think there are a few things missing that are important for a bookkeeper or accountant to provide.  Cash flow management is crucial for business success and growth; a bookkeeper should offer tips and strategies to help you with your cash flow.   In addition, timely financial information and advice are essential for monitoring your business’s performance and identifying any issues.  Outsourcing the bookkeeping and accounting for your small business should not only ensure the tasks are performed correctly but value should be added.

I also think the points on hiring in-house can be modified.  With the prevalence of cloud-based tools, many tasks can be performed remotely very efficiently and effectively.  Business size and workload don’t automatically equate to the need for on-site staff.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and experience; please share in the comments below:

  • how many hours a week or month you spend on your bookkeeping? 
  • if you’ve outsourced your bookkeeping, what was the main reason (lack of: time, knowledge, interest)? 






  1. December 30, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    Wow, this us a great post. Thanks for making the process easy to understand!

  2. December 30, 2015 at 8:51 pm

    very well written post! Thanks for sharing this. Getting a good accountant is always hard. Thanks for sharing all the details.

    I am @

  3. December 31, 2015 at 3:42 am

    Very useful – thanks! You’ve said some things I needed to hear – I’m in startup mode and keep telling myself I don’t have the money to hire out the bookkeeping. Maybe I need this more than I need that fancy set of photos each month, though.


    • Sarah-Reply
      December 31, 2015 at 12:34 pm

      Thanks for your comment Jonya. Getting help may cost less than you realize, and the benefits may be much greater than you imagine.

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