Imagine the NFL has just awarded you their newest franchise in your city. The first thing you would do as owner is hire an experienced general manager to head the entire organization. The GM would hire the head coach to run the team and the head coach would hire assistant coaches to train the players. But the selection of players would come last. In other words you would build your organization from the top down.
Businesses on the other hand have historically done the opposite, building from the bottom up. The earliest hires are usually low to mid-level positions rather than the C-suite leaders that are needed to build the structure a winning organization needs.
An accounting department usually starts with a bookkeeper. A controller or CFO comes much later. But it doesn’t have to be that way anymore. If you want a winning organization, built with the right structure from the beginning, you need a CFO to pour that structure for your bookkeeper and future staff to follow.
Today, staff at all levels are available part-time so you can get the C-suite leaders in early to pour the winning structure for your organization to follow. You no longer have to wait until you’re bigger to get the full complement of skill sets that a larger organization has. You can and should have the full org chart, just as your new NFL team would have.
To help you put your accounting department together properly, I created my free guide called Accounting Job Descriptions with Titles, Duties and Salaries. You can download this from the Free Resources page of my website, Robertband.com.
With that guide, here is how I recommend you cobble together your accounting department (or any other department for that matter). Spill all the tasks that a full accounting department should do on the floor. Sweep the bookkeeper tasks to one corner, controller and CFO tasks to other corners and so on.
Each task should be done by the right level staff so that you’re paying the right rate for each task. A CFO should not be doing bookkeeping and a controller should not be doing accounts payable. It’s too costly on an hourly basis.
Next see which piles require full time hires and which require part-time hires. At inception, you should pair a part-time bookkeeper with a part-time CFO. Later, you can hire full time staff when their piles become full time piles.
Given all the outsourced talent available, it is possible to have a complete accounting department with work getting done by the proper experts at the proper rates.
So go out and get your assistant coaches and have them create your system and train your players. That’s what great owners do to create winning teams.
Reminder, get my free guide called Accounting Job Descriptions with Titles, Duties and Salaries from the Free Resources page of my website. Use them in your job ads and recruiting.
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This is Robert Band, your business finance expert, helping you transform your company’s finances. Remember, one tip could be worth millions and profits today become fortunes tomorrow.