How can practices cope as COVID-19 crisis squeezes resources?

here to help
By James Nadal | 20th March 2020 | 14 min read

There is an urgent need for businesses to adapt as the COVID-19 outbreak escalates and more staff are either off sick, self-isolating, working remotely, or struggling to cope with home schooling their children.

Anyone with symptoms of mild upper respiratory tract infection, cough, or fever, must self-isolate for a week under Government instructions. Even those in the same household as a sufferer must remain at home for 14 days.

But does your practice have the capacity and resources to cope with the impact it’s likely to have on your team?

Extra pair of hands

As the likelihood of the virus outbreak impacting upon your workforce increases, seriously testing your capacity to complete vital client work, could you benefit from some extra resources on a temporary basis?

Outsourcing is already widely used by businesses as a cost-effective way to add an extra pair of hands to get important tasks completed on time and in compliance with legislation.

Some practices hire temporary staff via an outsourcing service during their busiest periods, such as the lead up to the Self-Assessment tax deadline.

Although the circumstances are different, the principle is the same. Your workforce is under strain and struggling to meet the demands of clients.

With nobody knowing how long the current crisis will go on for, practices hit by staff shortages may find they fall behind on deadlines bit by bit, gradually becoming overwhelmed, and are eventually unable to meet important deadlines.

Being prepared at the early stages of the crisis to ensure your business continues as normal – however long the national health emergency continues – could be a wise step.

Hiring freeze

Hiring new full time staff right now is clearly not a good option. Adding new staff for the purposes of just a few months and then potentially not having sufficient work beyond that is not the best solution. Think of the costs involved.

In fact, many firms are putting a recruitment freeze in place while the coronavirus continues to grind society to a halt. Indeed, even if you wanted to hire a new full time member of staff right now, think of all the practical difficulties imposed by self-isolation and social distancing measures, including carrying out interviews, not to mention the time and effort involved in finding the right people.

In all likelihood, trying to hire new staff at the moment would be just another headache that you can’t afford or face, while you try to keep operations running as normal.

So, we return to the idea of outsourcing. You may not be seeking help with some of the more complicated client tasks but what about an extra trained and qualified pair of hands to complete routine accounts and payroll work on a temporary basis? This could free up your full-time team to concentrate on higher value and more critical tasks.

Here to help

IRIS Resourcing, our outsourcing service, offers fully trained staff for accountancy firms. We offer cost-effective, short, flexible arrangements. Our team, based in India, are fully trained and ISO 9001:2008 certified, to comply with key legislation, such as data protection law.

Keen to learn more about it?

Call us today on 0344 815 5656.

For other ideas on how we can help create certainty in uncertain times