Revenue Recognition Best Practices for SaaS Companies
Methods of Implementing ASC 606: Big-4, Boutique Consulting, or Internal [infographic]
Can you hear the ASC 606 drumbeat getting louder with each new day? Although your comrades over here at Embark try not to boast, we must admit we’ve been warning you about the new revenue recognition standards for a good amount of time now.
With this latest salvo, we once again remind you that the drumbeat will soon be deafening. Choose the most suitable solution from the alternatives and roll up your sleeves because the clock is ticking. Of course, you can always choose to do nothing, bleed through the nose in fines and spend your newly found free time looking for another job but, typically speaking, that particular solution is usually frowned upon.
Whether you ultimately decide to tackle implementation internally or bring in outside help, Embark is here to help you decide which route is best for you.
The Big Four
There's a reason why even those outside the industry are well-familiar with the Big 4. They have a global footprint, specialized teams from nearly every conceivable industry and, like the CIA, can have a significant group of operatives storm your offices and be knee deep in the project before your second cup of coffee.
Granted, the Big Four aren’t perfect and definitely not created equal so what might be a great experience with one could be miserable with another. Also, aside from their hefty price tags, they can be quite bureaucratic so the decision-making process, along with the time needed to learn your business, might be surprisingly glacial in speed.
Smaller firms certainly offer their own distinct advantages. Most will have significant Big Four talent but, due to their size and diverse backgrounds, have the flexibility to collaborate with external auditors. Many boutique firms will also have extensive industry and ASC 606 experience to enhance project efficiency. And perhaps most importantly, your specific project will likely be given the attention it deserves.
While boutique firms have much to offer, they lack both the scalable abilities and brand-name of the Big Four. However, this means you won’t be slapped with a “Big Four price tag,” while still getting consultants with comparable experience.
Since the team will still be comprised of a group of outsiders, it will take time to learn about your specific business.
It goes without saying that an in-house team will have extremely specific knowledge of your operations and will never have any competing clients. However, implementing ASC 606 entirely with an internal team will mean their efforts will always be diluted since they will have other responsibilities to attend to. A limited knowledge base and familiarity with 606 implementation can also be a tremendous detriment to the quality of work.
No matter which path you choose, it’s time to stop ignoring that drumbeat. Make a choice, commit and get the job done because ASC 606 isn’t going away.