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I’m a CEO: What Should I Outsource?

By: Jason Kruger


What Should I Outsource

If you’re running a company, it probably means that you are A) incredibly adept at working well in a wide variety of disciplines, and B) incredibly worn out from taking care of aspects of your company better left to third parties.

The good news is, you can redouble your efforts where you are needed most, save money, and increase operating efficiency by outsourcing elements of your business.

Mind on Your Money

Though you might be able to teach a master class on multitasking, you certainly do not want to imperil your business with shoddy finances. Let experts handle your bottom line with aplomb.

Finance and Accounting

Finance and accounting, do you know the difference?  Accounting is making sure your information is right and keeping score (looking back at performance) while finance should be strategic and looking forward. Accounting—you either love it or hate it, often depending on how numbers-fixated you are. For those less willing to immerse themselves in spreadsheets, offloading accounting is a relief. But even the calculator-inclined need to hand over the reins to a good operational accountant. The best, outsourced accounting teams provide ongoing support and analysis, customized monthly reports, and oversight or assistance to members of your management team.

On the financial side (typically a CFO), limit yourself to a few key metrics that allow you to check in with the bigger picture. Leverage the relationships of the CFO to ensure you have the best resources to support your goals. You are far too busy and valuable to lose yourself in the figures or to be working with bad information.


Just three years ago, the IRS levied more than $2 billion worth of fines against businesses that could have been avoided with more careful payroll services. Don’t become part of this year’s statistic. Consider outsourcing your payroll instead.

Reputable companies will make sure you avoid costly errors and keep your employees happy with smooth payroll administration. You can easily save costs by moving efforts off-site. What’s more, by keeping your payroll staff completely separate, you can increase the level of confidentiality relating to wages and salaries.

The Look and Feel

As far as office décor is concerned, you should not spend too much time on the workspace itself at the expense of the success of your organization. Let professionals help you. Real estate agents can offer their expertise to find a commercial and/or office space that fits your specific parameters. They can often locate undervalued properties or those locations that are not publicly listed.

You should also entrust an interior designer with whom you share a common vision. Contract someone who will think both in terms of practicality and aesthetics, give them your instructions, and move on to the next important item.

The First Resource

Though you may want to put it off, human resources should not be ignored. Onboarding true talent is the most indispensable element of both bootstrapping start-ups and time-honored corporations. Yes, you will want to ensure each person is a culture fit, but that does not entail micromanagement of every step along the way. Your role begins and ends with the final-round interview; leave the contract management, payroll, executive searches, open interviewing, and negotiating to industry professionals.

As well as saving you time, an off-site HR department saves you money, which is why over a quarter of companies surveyed by The Society for Human Resources Management outsource this work. You won’t need extra staff members, office space, or training programs for a non-revenue-earning department if you outsource. What’s more, you’ll boost productivity by alleviating in-house paperwork requirements and enjoying the advanced streamlining technology used by providers.

Express Yourself — Through Others

Of course you have ideas—you wouldn’t be the CEO of a company otherwise—but you don’t need to spend excess time communicating them. Let your specialists work their magic on them instead.

Creative Content

Outsource a content manager to perform as your wellspring for creative expression, including blog posts, logo design, brand guidelines, infographics, and website content. If you are like the 60% of companies who need additional help, consider utilizing freelance copywriters and designers, or a marketing agency, too.

Social Media

You ought to consider outsourcing a social media manager to help garner credibility and trust among consumers, as well as marketing your services or products. Instead of folding this role into a pre-existing position (filled by an employee who already has a heavy workload), find someone who can make the social growth of your company his or her only goal.

The Admin Is In

Depending on your company’s specific plan, you may not need an in-office receptionist, who will only be available for a certain fraction of the day and will require a salary, benefits, time off, and healthcare. Virtual answering machines have come into vogue as a way to keep customers satisfied no matter what time they call you, while saving on the bottom line.

You may also consider a similar tactic with a virtual assistant, which will save you countless hours in scheduling appointments, responding to rote email tasks, and other necessary but repetitive tasks.

Domestic Needs

Work-life balance is essential, as you know, but that also means understanding the encroachment of domestic responsibilities on your ability to effectively lead. This means that those pesky household chores, from yard work and home repair to typical upkeep and meal preparations, could be handled better by third parties. Find contractors to suit your lifestyle and forget about the gutters already.

Be Wise with Your Enterprise

While outsourcing too much can be a mistake—see the 1990s overseas boom as an example—the careful selection of outsourcing can control costs, increase efficiency, lower your risk ceiling, and focus on the core of your business where it needs your help. Take heed and let others in to raise you up to new heights.

Published: April 25, 2017

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Jason Kruger

Jason Kruger has more than 16 years of accounting and finance experience in both public and private industry accounting. Since 2008, Jason has acted as the CFO for many of Signature Analytics’ clients, providing them with the financial analysis they need to grow their business and make more data driven decisions. He has direct experience with many complex accounting and financial issues within a variety of companies and industries, including software, technology, biotech, manufacturing, food/beverage, apparel, construction, and advertising. Prior to Signature Analytics, Jason spent ten years in public accounting, culminating as an Audit Senior Manager with Deloitte in San Diego. He received his bachelor’s degree in Accounting/Finance from the University of Arizona. Follow @SignatureAnalytics on Facebook and @Outsourcedacctg on Twitter.

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