Looking to hire a Filipino accountant?

Good choice! If you’re new to hiring an outsourced account, you may be wondering what exactly you should be looking for. Here are the important considerations you should make.

What should you look for when hiring outsourced accountants in the Philippines?

This is an interesting question. Many people don't realize quite how common and simple and frankly easy it is to hire people in the Philippines. The barriers we had, say, 10 years ago, are now gone.

Now that we have communication tools like Zoom and Slack, General Ledger software— like QuickBooks Online and Xero and Practice Management tools like Karbon, anybody can work remotely.

There's very little difference between being remote in-country or being remote overseas.

So, back to the question, what should you look for in hiring Filipino accountants?

The same thing as if they were local. If you were hiring someone local, you'd be looking for:

  • someone with experience and education
  • a great attitude
  • a great communicator
  • problem solver
  • and other criteria important to you

However, there may be certain concerns that people have or special considerations. So let's talk through some of these.

Hire a Filipino Accountant That Speaks English Well

Probably one of the biggest questions on people's minds are whether a Filipino accountant will have the level of English communication skills you needtrouble speaking English.

I want to let you know that this is not as big a concern as most people think.

Most people don't know, and I didn't know until recently, that the Philippines is the fifth largest English-speaking country in the world. Depending on the source, it might even be the fourth largest.

People over there speak and write very well and there's really no problem with giving them client contact.


IT security is another common concern.

The truth is that unfortunately hackers don't care what country you're in.

So, IT security best practices are going to be the same whether your team is remote in country or overseas.

If you do have concerns or have certain practices that you want to implement, TeamUp has IT providers over there that we can connect you with.

How Should You Handle Working Hours Across Time Zones When Working With a Filipino Accountant?

This is a common question.

Basically, you’ll most likely need some hours of overlap in your work day, and some hours where your Filipino bookkeepers will be on their own.

That depends whether you have them work during the day or during the night or somewhere in between.

Because of that, you want to make sure that whoever you hire is independent and is able to work autonomously. If they have problems, they can solve them proactively and they're organized about when they come and ask you questions and when to set those things aside.

So, you may want them to be more independent than somebody who is in your time zone.

Let's be honest, though… you don't want to hire anybody who's not independent, no matter what time zone they're in!


What about their internet connection? Five to 10 years ago, this was actually a pretty big problem when I was working with people in the Philippines.

Luckily, today it's not really an issue. Almost everyone has a fast, reliable internet.

Cultural Differences When You Hire a Filipino Accountant

Now we've come to my favorite and probably biggest consideration.

Keep an eye on our site as we're probably going to have many videos on this as it's such a big topic -

What are the cultural differences? Should you have any specific considerations?

The TL;DR is yes, there are some differences.

I just love getting to know my staff over there, and to me it's exciting and fun to learn about their culture. But yes, there are some differences and there can be some challenges.

That’s why it's good to hire somebody who has experience working with Western companies and is comfortable doing things a little bit differently than they might be used to.

The good news is that the outsourcing industry is enormous in the Philippines, so large numbers of the workforce have experience working with Western companies.

“You’ll be working with real professionals who want to build their careers and get promoted.”

What Can I expect From My Filipino Accountant?

There’s a very high level of education and talent in the Philippines.

People are easy to work with, they're ambitious, and they want to learn, grow, and develop. You'll be working with real professionals who want to build their careers and get promoted.

On a personal level, they're a delight to work with. I know this because my entire team is in the Philippines!

At Team Up, we recruit top-tier Filipino talent for accounting firms for a flat fee. We're a recruiting agency, not a BPO, so there are no ongoing fees.

If you want help with compliance and payroll, we can help connect you with an Employer of Record who can take care of all of that.

If you want to learn more, sign up to our bi-weekly newsletter where I share my top hiring and management tips for working with staff in the Philippines.  

Or check out some some more resources on hiring in the Philippines on our website:

Click below to schedule a call today. We can’t wait to help you.

Written By
Isaac Smith
Isaac has been building businesses since 2014. He sold an eCommerce business in 2019, co-founded Summit eCommerce Advisors - a bookkeeping and advisory firm, TeamUp - a recruiting business, and hosts the Next Level eCommerce podcast. He lives in the Portland, Oregon area, where he loves snowboarding with his daughter and trying to convince his wife to do outdoorsy things.
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