Entrepreneurs, industry leaders and social media influencers have hectic schedules. Managing a company is not just about commerce. It also involves a lot of paperwork. Businesses often have separate departments and teams that look after their tax accounting, bank work and permit necessities. Since there are some commerce laws involved in the process, more than one corporate lawyer comprises these teams. For multinational corporations, there are multiple teams of secretarial personnel, who take care of business laws, licenses and permits.
Very recently, the business landscape in Singapore has seen several significant changes. The Companies Act 2017 has made it mandatory for any enterprise with a base in the country to have at least one residential director. The companies that are already present in the market are looking to hire local talents to cover this responsibility, and the emerging ones are working with company secretarial services like Acrafile to comply with the statutory regulations. Outsourcing is not a new concept for most businesses operating in the Asian markets. In fact, most of them have shifted their production to the Asian market due to the cheaper costs of raw material and broader availability of talent.
Outsourcing any company responsibility means you can continue to work on whatever you are doing right now and at the same time another off-site team takes care of the added responsibilities. It could also mean that while you go on a holiday, your off-site squad can take care of your business. Here are a few of the everyday responsibilities entrepreneurs outsource every day –
- Legal transcription
- Stenotype and documentation
- Bookkeeping services
- Appointment organizations
- Travel and meeting organization
- Email marketing, replying and other mailing services
Due to the advent of social media and online marketing, some new duties have come into the picture.
- Uploading and maintaining social media blogs
- Transcription of podcasts and monitoring the feedback
- Online file organization and maintenance
- Database administration and updating
- Training management, customer services, and technical support
In the light of the recent developments of the Singapore Companies Act 2017, it has become necessary for many companies to outsource their secretarial duties as well. Since the laws are changing, there are necessities for current permits and new application processes. Having a company secretary will help your company clear the requisites for getting a business permit.
What should be the qualifying criteria for a company secretary?
Most outsourcing services ensure that their talent pool fulfills the requirement for the post of company secretaries. Nonetheless, as the owner of a business, it is your responsibility to confirm that your company secretary is –
- A permanent resident of Singapore or a citizen.
- Qualified to handle corporate administrative services.
- Trained enough to meet corporate legal responsibilities.
- Experienced to handle the complex set of duties on behalf of the company.
What advantages does the company secretary bring your way?
Finding the right company secretary can help you in many ways. It will not only help you comply with the statutes of commerce, but it will also help you file all changes to ACRA on time.
- Cost-effectiveness – one of the leading benefits of outsourcing your secretarial services is reducing your company’s operational expenses. You can bypass the refresher course or fresh talent induction costs. Curtailing training costs can save your company millions of dollars each year, depending on the size of your operations. Additionally, you will save on real-estate expenses and employee benefits, which most outsourcing companies do not demand. However, you will have to follow the payroll standards of the company you are appointing.
- Multidisciplinary services – once you opt for outsourcing, you will rendezvous with the possibility of inter-disciplinary services from the same company. In fact, as we have mentioned before, administrative services include a plethora of minor and significant responsibilities that range from filing ACRA to applying for funding. The company secretarial service you are choosing right now should be able to meet all these responsibilities without defaulting.
- Improvement of efficiency-enhancing company efficiency is one of the other benefits that come with outsourcing specific secretarial duties to appropriate parties. Outsourcing will help your current teams focus on the production part of the business, while the new off-site administrative squad can take care of the paperwork and legalities. It takes a colossal headache off the head of the business owner, and it streamlines the workflow.
What challenges can an incorrectly chosen team bring to your business?
Even while looking for home cleaning or gardening services online, you review and recheck the credentials and reputations of the applicants. There is no reason why you should not do the same while picking secretarial services for your business. It is true that these companies will not have an administrative hold over your company or direct access to your business account, but they can influence the way your business interacts with the government authorities.
Confidentiality – over time, you will have to entrust company details, sensitive documents and key paperwork to the secretarial service providers. Unless you can establish an equation of mutual trust, this will be impossible.
Accessibility– the company you pick to represent your business, should be accessible 24/7/365. It is impossible to stay in touch with the progress unless you do so. Outsourcing to a team that resides in another country is only feasible when there is a reliable connection making up for the distance.
Accountability – your new team should have one spokesperson, whom you can contact upon emergency. That is another way of saying there should be one person accountable for the actions including meeting with the banks, filing applications for new licenses and negotiating with the vendors.
Outsourcing secretarial responsibilities take out a lot of expenses out of the equation and replace them with a diverse set of talents that can meet the latest statutory requirements. Today, it has become imperative for foreign businesses in Singapore to appoint a nominee company secretary to exist in the market and compete with the local businesses.