When it comes to outsourcing, there are rarely one size fits all solutions for businesses. The demands of your business are going to determine which positions you need to have in-house and which can be on call or remote. The following will explore a few benefits of outsourcing as well as explore some of the common areas of your business to consider.
What Is Outsourcing?
Outsourcing has become a trendy word that, to many, is synonymous with optimization. In the most basic sense, outsourcing involves hiring someone or a team of people from outside your business to handle specific parts of your work. Companies have been discovering that many positions they were paying a full-time employee to handle are actually better served by hiring out of the house. Common things to outsource include: lead generation, financial analysis, content marketing, lead generation, and customer support. Of course, depending on your work, there might be other things worth outsourcing.
Tasks That Are Only Occasionally Needed
One of the most common benefits of outsourcing relates to elements of your work that are rare or occasional. Let’s take, for instance, a smaller business that runs primarily online and so has excellent digital records kept automatically. It might not be in that business’ best interest to hire someone full or part-time to handle accounting. It might be better to outsource accounting to an accounting firm where tax materials are sent each tax season. An in-house accountant probably wouldn’t have enough work throughout the year to make the position worthwhile.
Work That Is Outside Your Company’s Specialty
Another common benefit of outsourcing has to do with letting your professionals and experts focus on their areas of specialization. Let’s say you have six employees who are stellar at their creative advertising-based work. They put hours into crafting stunning and effective ads and running the necessary tests to determine whether certain approaches are working. Let’s say you also need your office space deep cleaned every other week. It probably doesn’t make sense to pull one of your staff members away from their advertising work to have the office cleaned. You might want to hire an out-of-house cleaner or cleaning team to handle that work so that everyone can keep focusing on what they’re best at.
Positions That Can Be Outsourced And Require Rare Skills
It’s also a good idea to consider outsourcing if the position you’re looking to fill can be done remotely and is also hard to fill. By opening yourself up to the possibility of hiring a virtual staff member, you’ve drastically widened your pool of potential applicants to everyone on earth who speaks the language that your company does and has internet access. Suddenly, you can find that perfect hire from four states away, and you don’t need to convince them to move to your town to get the job done. You can also flip this logic and realize that outsourced employees mean you can move yourself and your company to any location without having to worry about losing beloved staff and going through the process of hiring again.
Take information technology, for instance. As more and more businesses begin using information technology, there is a greater need for people with IT skills. Lawyers, doctors, teachers, and many other professionals need to use computers in their day-to-day work. This being said, not all of these professionals are experts at troubleshooting tech issues and getting devices connected and functioning; they’re already an expert in another field. Often, businesses need some IT support to manage their new office tech. Many people consider remote technical support because these skills are extremely valuable and hard to find among already existing staff members. Other rare skills might include video production, social media management, advertising, web design, etc.
Positions That Can Be Outsourced And Are Expensive
The final common benefit of outsourcing is saving money. Given that the value of a wage is relative to where someone lives, you can find yourself hiring someone for what you would consider not a lot of money, but they would consider a fantastic wage. Outsourcing can help bring money to families and communities that need it all over the world while simultaneously keeping a company’s bottom line in an ideal range. Finding the balance between the cost of a position and the skills within it can be a lot easier when outsourcing is considered.
What Not To Outsource
While outsourcing has some stellar benefits, there are a few roads you don’t want to go down. You never want to outsource your company’s specialty. For example, if you develop new products, you don’t want to hire out-of-house developers. Your company culture and identity can take a pretty big hit if that’s the case. You also don’t want to outsource something that would be hard for someone to manage outside of the office. If a role requires regular presence in the workplace, outsourcing is going to mean that the person you hire isn’t going to be able to do their absolute best work. This can result in frustrations all along your pipeline.
Selecting The Right Outsourcing Company
When it comes to outsourcing, you need to be aware of a few extra things when making your choices. The first is time differences. Everyone needs to be aware of equivalent hours so that staff aren’t getting urgent emails at 2 am. Likewise, you want to find a company that is open and available during the hours you need them most. Something like virtual IT support will be needed during your office hours, so be sure that you can contact them at the times you need. Finally, you want to look at whether a specific outsourcing company has dealt with your industry before. If you’re a small law firm looking for a virtual assistant, for example, it would be ideal to find a virtual assistant who has worked with legal businesses in the past as this person will know the lingo and legal requirements needed to perform the job well.
The above information should have broken down the basics of outsourcing and when and why you might want to try it. It is critical that when you’re outsourcing, you put in the effort to introduce all your in-house staff to your out-of-house help, particularly those who might need to interact often. You also want everyone on board with what communication methods will be used between parties and who needs to be informed of ongoing communications (through CCing or otherwise) so that nothing gets lost in translation.