Why we outsource
Part of the modern world of providing professional services is Outsourcing, the use of an external organisation to perform some business functions. In accounting the use of Offshore Outsourcing enables us to offer services which we would not otherwise be able to provide.
This doesn’t mean we replace Australian jobs with overseas jobs. Rather, we are able to provide a more complete service to clients not only because of the cost differential, but also the time difference which allows for more continuous processing. It also brings a diversity of skills to our service offering as our staff based overseas have different education, training and professional culture to those who have worked primarily in Australia.
After some partially successful trials with generic Offshoring we decided a few years ago to establish our own business in Hyderabad, India which is called Formula Advisory. The Formula staff are allocated to specific PKF teams and work under the direction of our Sydney & Newcastle staff. This model creates a relationship between the offices that cannot be achieved with a generic model.
Part of ensuring these relationships are nurtured and grown is for people from our teams in Australia to visit Hyderabad and work alongside their Formula co-workers. In November last year, Mitch Stone, James Azzi, Madina Shagaeva and Josie McEnally of our Sydney Business Advisory Services Unit did exactly that. We asked Madina and Josie to give us their thoughts on the visit and here they are:
“The journey commenced with a ‘short’ 16-hour flight. On arrival we were greeted with a friendly and very smiley “Hello and welcome Ma’am!” by our local driver, tour guide and companion ‘Gilly’ (so named for his fondness of cricketer Adam Gilchrist). As we emerged from the airport our senses were almost overwhelmed by the taste and smell of local traditional dishes, the sound of the tuk tuks and car horns, the humidity and the feeling of excitement!
Having come this far it wasn’t going to be all work and we were grateful to have experienced the hospitality of Formula CEO Michael O’Sullivan and his wife Fiona, who made our stay most comfortable. Highlights were a Sunday brunch at the Westin, a trip to the opulent Taj Falaknuma Palace, outings to historic sites such as Charminar and Golkonda Fort, and visiting local produce markets.
Although we enjoyed playing tourist and seeing many wonderful Hyderabad sights, work was the main focus and we found the time spent with our Formula team invaluable. Working side by side with them gave us the opportunity for individual training, an understanding of the way processes are carried out, and the ability to see how to make improvements in efficiency and quality within our team.
We found that although technology facilitates communication from half way around the world, the advantages and benefits of face-to-face engagements with our Hyderabad team mates were limitless. The team was welcoming, enthusiastic and eager to share their culture. We too remained quintessentially Australian by not letting them forget who is the best at cricket!
Our trip to Hyderabad has significantly improved our teamwork and internal communication skills. We are incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to travel to India and look forward to implementing what we learned.”
Offshore Outsourcing is not for everyone, but we have found it an excellent option for meeting the demands of changing technology and expectations. The opportunity for our team to experience a different country and culture first hand is a bonus.