When everyone began working from home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses saw firsthand how difficult it is to function effectively each day without access to reliable accounting and financial services and expertise. This epiphany brought good news and bad news.
The bad news: late payments, inaccurate reports, poor cash flow, and other issues compounded an already difficult situation. The good news: more businesses were introduced to client accounting services (CAS) as a solution that delivers value far beyond the current business climate.
What Is CAS?
CAS is a service model that uses modern, cloud-based software to provide businesses with remote operational and strategic accounting and financial services while also optimizing the processes involved with these services. A CAS engagement is usually provided for a monthly fee, and services can be added or removed as needed.
While the exact services provided depend on the needs of the individual client, CAS can include:
- Financial statement preparation (write-ups)
- Cash flow management
- Accounts payable and receivable
- Bill payment
- Tax preparation and payments
- Controller and CFO advisory services
- Strategic analysis, planning, and process improvement
The Advantages of CAS
At the most basic level, CAS allows businesses to focus on their core competencies by turning over all (or a portion) of their accounting and financial services to experienced professionals without the expense of hiring and retaining talent. A CAS provider can either complement your in-house accounting staff or serve as a full outsourced accounting department.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have struggled to pay their bills on time, generate timely financial reports, and maintain cash flow. Perhaps the bookkeeper who used to come to the office one day a week has been unable to do so, or the CFO or controller has been working remotely and is more difficult to reach. Whatever the reason may be, many day-to-day financial tasks have slipped through the cracks.
Practical Ways Businesses can Benefit from Prager Metis CAS
Instead of having a bookkeeper visit the office once a week on a certain day at a certain time, Prager Metis uses cloud-based software to remotely manage your day-to-day bookkeeping and have your books reviewed by an accountant. You have access to a full team of professionals rather than one individual, which means you are not left with no backup if that individual becomes unavailable for any reason.
Another bonus: you have an accounting firm handling all of your bookkeeping work. As we handle day-to-day tasks, we’re also keeping an eye on your financials and creating monthly reports. Essentially, you pay for bookkeeping and accounting for the same monthly fee while gaining access to our online platform and the expertise of our entire firm.
CAS can also bring down your tax return fees. The streamlined process for preparing tax returns is a built-in advantage, as you will not have to go back and forth with a bookkeeper to correct any inaccuracies or provide additional information tax preparers may need; that work is already completed by others within the firm. We close the month and add the correct information to your financials, as if you paid your accountant to come to your office.
How Prager Metis Has Helped Businesses with CAS
Many businesses have taken advantage of CAS from Prager Metis to get their financial house in order and back on track.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve been able to help clients secure Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. We’ve helped them reduce payroll. We’ve made sure bills get paid on time to avoid penalties. We’ve helped international clients better manage their U.S. operations, streamline accounting processes, improve internal controls, and provide meaningful reports, all without requiring a physical visit to an office.
Of course, the value of CAS extends far beyond the coronavirus. CAS is about streamlining day-to-day processes, leveraging the latest software, gaining access to a full-service accounting team, and implementing a reliable, long-term strategy for managing your financials. Whether your team is working remotely or in the office, CAS deliver tremendous business value.
If you’d like to learn how you can outsource some or all your financial functions to focus on running and growing your business, contact us today to schedule a demo