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Nearshoring: Audit and Accounting

Public accounting firms find talent relief in nearshoring solutions


Top 10 – Top 200 U.S.-based public accounting firms

Area of Expertise: 


Professional Services

The Problem

The gross shortage of public accountants in the U.S. has challenged public accounting firms’ ability to deliver the services their clients need. With overworked auditors and accounting team members, and no available bench, firms have turned work away. Given the bleak labor outlook for this type of talent and no sign of relief in the coming years, public accounting firm clients have turned to Vaco to provide outsourced accounting and auditing professionals and alternative solutions that result in:

  • Qualified talent at all levels, especially mid-tier positions
  • Higher quality of work
  • Engaged and happy accountants and auditors
  • Reduced attrition of staff- and senior-level resources
  • Team continuity and a collaborative culture

In the past, firms often defaulted to offshore locations such as India or South Africa for outsourcing; however, time-zone differences, the inability to easily travel to onsite locations, high turnover and communication often become challenges to work quality and delivery. Although offshoring can be effective for transactional work, public accounting firms delivering professional services to clients benefit from the synergies and strong relationships achieved with teams comprised of onshore and nearshore resources. For our public accounting firm clients, Vaco delivered an optimal nearshore solution.


In 2020, nearly 75% of CPAs in the workforce reached retirement age or older. That and other factors are contributing to an extreme shortage of public accountants.

American Institute of Certified Public Accountants

The Solution

Vaco, in partnership with local providers in Trinidad, provided senior staff and senior auditor talent who we managed. Trinidad has a thriving economy and strong infrastructure. The island is not in the hurricane belt, and it boasts a stable power grid and subsea fiber-optic cables that support 4G networks.

In less than two weeks, our nearshore team based in Trinidad was operating effectively and was well-integrated with our clients’ teams. Vaco-managed consultants traveled from Trinidad to the U.S. for training, which contributed to the pace and efficiency of getting a successful solution in place. Once onboard, our nearshore talent acclimated with impressive speed and were able to fully execute a variety of functions, including leading audit engagements in a senior capacity. Our nearshore team members became integral to our clients’ organizations and accounting and auditing services. Clients gained a sustainable, long-term solution to their talent gaps.

The Impact

Our clients continue to report that Vaco’s nearshore solution feels quite different from offshoring. The nearshore teams seamlessly integrate with employees who are working in North America. Benefits experienced by our clients include:

  • Lower costs; Vaco designed and implemented a nearshoring solution at an average cost savings of 25%, as compared to rates in North America
  • Increased our clients’ ability and success in charging billable hours, resulting in an average of 1,600 additional billable hours per resource per year
  • Higher-quality work, due to well-trained, university-educated nearshore workers (they are often former Big 4 employees)
  • Effective communication (remote workers speak English as a first language)
  • Fewer time-zone barriers (nearshore location based in the Atlantic Standard Time zone)
  • Highly productive remote teams, reducing the need to travel to nearshore teams
  • Collaborative relationships, where the U.S. and nearshore teams function as one
  • Boosted morale for U.S. teams who can offload workstreams and functions to energized professionals
  • Genuine bonds between U.S. and remote teams and excellent cultural alignment
  • Greater retention of intellectual capital due to high job satisfaction and retention of nearshore workers, who have unique growth opportunities and earning potential

Click to download a PDF copy of the case study here.


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