“Accounting is the language of business.” — Warren Buffett

As a business owner, you need to wear a lot of hats. Although you can juggle marketing and business development tasks, there is one key area of your business that requires extra special attention — your finances.

These days, you can access a range of accounting software options, most of which help automate this critical process. Whether you have some experience with accounting or not, the most important thing is to keep your information reliable and up-to-date.

From invoicing to tax planning, today you can access a range of beneficial services, all wrapped up into one accounting resource — but where do you begin? If you are a small business owner in need of accounting services, here is what you need to know about Bench, particularly in comparison to Founder’s CPA.

An Overview of Bench Accounting

Bench Accounting

First founded in 2012, Bench helps small businesses automate and organize their finances. Unlike some of the current accounting options, which are targeted towards the end user, Bench offers a more hands-on approach. Each month, a team of bookkeepers will organize your transactions and accounts, creating financial statements for you to review.

More specifically, you will gain access to an accurate income statement and balance sheet. This will allow you to more consciously monitor your expenses and overall income. When you take the time to thoroughly review these reports, you will be able to better understand your company’s financial health. That way, you can better control cash flow, develop new sales strategies, etc.

Pricing System

When using the services offered by Bench, there are five pricing tiers to choose from:

  • Starter — $95/month if billed annually ($125/month if billed monthly)
  • Micro — $125/month if billed annually ($145/month if billed monthly)
  • Boutique — $165/month if billed annually ($195/month if billed monthly)
  • Venture — $215/month if billed annually ($255/month if billed monthly)
  • Corporate — $295/month if billed annually ($345/month if billed monthly)

For the “Starter” pricing tier, Bench recommends this option if your monthly expenses are below $1,000. When comparing the cost of this service to what you are likely making (when spending less than $1,000 on expenses per month), Bench is certainly costly for small businesses.

As reported by Bench, what makes them different is that they do not only offer small business owners bookkeeping software, but also a team of professional bookkeepers. Although beneficial in terms of your financial records, if this service is out of your price range, it may become counterproductive in terms of your current needs.

Based on online reviews, as well as the core features offered, some of the main advantages and disadvantages of Bench include:

Pros

  • Good service and support for clients (however, some clients have complained that it can take days to hear a response).
  • Generates quick and accurate reports that are user-friendly. Each month, you will receive interactive financial statements.
  • Ensures a more accurate approach to your company’s finances, as they manage your invoices, receivables, etc. Also, each client is assigned a dedicated bookkeeper (although some clients have complained that bookkeepers change frequently).

Cons

  • Some of the integrations are slightly buggy.
  • Although helpful, this hands-off approach does not allow you to easily alter your data if desired (i.e., re-categorize data on your own).
  • Assigned bookkeepers change often, which is frustrating for some clients (especially when they need to re-explain details each time).
  • For small businesses, many find that Bench is too pricey for their current needs.

How Does Bench Accounting Compare to Founder’s CPA?

Similarly, Founder’s CPA is an accounting service, specifically developed with startups and small businesses in mind. Founded in 2015, we have achieved a dedicated following, based on the unique services and support that we offer. We are more than a bookkeeping service or accounting firm — we are a group of accounting experts who help small businesses optimize all aspects of their finances.

RelatedThe Importance of Bookkeeping for Startups

Not sure if it’s the right time to outsource your accounting needs? This informative article will help you identify whether or not it’s time to outsource your company’s bookkeeping. (Spoiler alert: In doing so, you will reduce the cost of errors and reserve your most precious resource of all — your time).

Just some of the main features associated with our accounting services include:

  • Bookkeeping: From software setup to software cleanup, bank reconciliations to ongoing bookkeeping support, we help our clients develop the best bookkeeping system for their unique needs. We will help you simplify all aspects of bookkeeping so that you can focus on what really matters — your business.
  • Payroll: Are you ready to set up a payroll processing system for your employees? Well, look no further.
  • Tax planning: As a small business owner, you know how stressful tax season can be. That is why we offer full tax planning support so that you can develop strategies that work for your business. This will help you stay on top of your obligations while you achieve greater peace of mind.

Whether you require QuickBooks consulting or are interested in budgeting and forecasting, be sure to check out our full list of available services.

What Are People Saying About Bench Accounting?

Overall, the majority of clients offered positive feedback after using Bench. On Trustpilot, they received an 8.3-star rating (out of 10 stars). Some of the reviews received include:

“This company has been a blessing. We found them through our attendance at MindBody Bold in San Diego last fall. They have straightened out our books and I actually look forward to sending them whatever information they require to complete our monthlies. They are professional, very thorough and most important, TRUSTWORTHY.”

“I’m very pleased with the service I get from Bench. I’ve used their service for about 2 years, and have no complaints. If you don’t have a local accountant to work with, this is the next best thing.”

“My business finances got more complicated than I wanted to wrangle with on a monthly basis, and it has been a relief to hand my bookkeeping over to Bench. The service has been excellent and I appreciate that the same small team reviews my books every month, one line item at a time.”

“Bench was great at first – my original bookkeeper was very smart, immediately understood my business, and produced monthly financial statements on time. He just moved on to another job, and the transition has been terrible, and now my books are a disaster going into tax season. They have miscategorized earnings and expenses, not responded to my comments on transactions, and completely messed up accounting on a loan, applying interest payments to the principal, after repeated instructions not to. They are very slow to respond to my requests and ultimately unreachable. I am very disappointed and most likely going back to QuickBooks online. It is not worth the $345 a month, considering I have to go back in and make corrections. I may as well pay a personal bookkeeper and have fewer frustrations.”

Similarly, on GetApp, Bench received a 4.14-star rating (out of 5 stars). Although they received eight “excellent” and four “very good” reviews, they also received two terrible ones. Here are a few of these contrasting reviews:

“The interface is clean and easy. Submitting expenses is easy and in most cases automated. My team, led by customer rep, is very responsive.”

“Great simple accounting service for the price. I really liked the responsiveness of my team and the ease of reviewing my account each month. during our monthly call, which is included with the monthly service fee.”

“If you look around and have your ducks in a row you will find these people are price gouging businesses and their pricing tactics are horribly unfair to the prospective customer. My best advice is RUN FAR FAR AWAY!”

What About Founder’s CPA?

Here are what some of our clients have had to say:

“The guidance I got during a 15-minute phone conversation saved me thousands of dollars that I would have incurred due to poor tax planning. Highly recommend it!”

“Founder’s CPA is a major asset for any business looking to not only handle day to day accounting but take a leadership approach to crafting new processes and procedural upgrades to ensure you have all the tools you need to be successful. I have worked and continue to work on several projects and businesses with the Founder’s CPA team and am constantly inspired by their dedication and expertise. Curt and his team are awesome!”

“We consider Founder’s CPA an integral part of our team and highly recommend their reliable, responsive, patient, and tuned-in service. What basically began as ‘help with QuickBooks’ has evolved into CFO duty at our two start-ups over time. You get those gigs by building trust, and Curt does that not only by consistently demonstrating deep and up-to-date knowledge of start-up accounting matters (e.g., QBO, tax law changes, S-Corp vs LLC, etc.), but by anticipating curve balls and doing what he says he’s going to do. This firm is a rare gem.”

Which Option Is Right for Me and My Growing Business?

If you are a startup or small business with a fairly strict budget, it is important that you’re able to work with a flexible service provider. Although Bench does offer expert services and support, they are expensive in terms of what is actually offered.
In comparison, when investing in Founder’s CPA, you will be able to achieve a wider range of goals and accounting milestones. After all, we do more than just bookkeeping. Offering a “one-stop-shop” in relation to all of your bookkeeping and accounting needs, whether you require assistance with taxes or budgeting, we’re here to help.
Additionally, Founder’s CPA offers features that will help you support your growing business. From payroll to invoicing, you cannot access these types of features with Bench. Remember, they specialize in bookkeeping and reporting only. We also develop tailored packages based on your unique needs, ensuring that your high-priority tasks are tended to without going over your budget.
As a side note, Bench does not sync with Quickbooks or other accounting software, which is another issue for many businesses looking to scale. However, you can transition from Quickbooks to Bench fairly easily. At that point, Bench would take over your bookkeeping.
Bottom line: If you are looking for a tailored accounting and bookkeeping package that will help you take your business to new heights, Founder’s CPA can assist you every step of the way.
Although Bench is rated well among its community, for what you pay, you are limited with what you’ll receive. That is why, at Founder’s CPA, we specialize in providing high-quality service and unbeatable value.
We understand that your business is unique, which is why we strive to simplify and execute your current needs while developing strategies for your growing requirements. If you are a small business or startup with plans to scale, requiring bookkeeping, payroll, and taxation support, Founder’s CPA is a great choice.
Still have some burning questions? Be sure to request your FREE consultation today!