To Outsource or Not To Outsource That Is the Question

BradYoung04 By BradYoung04, 12th Jun 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Business>IT & Ecommerce

The needs and requirements of outsourcing are different for every business and it can be hard to know what tasks you need to outsource, where to outsource them and when to outsource them. However difficult the process is, it’s one that can’t be ignored. Done correctly outsourcing can save your business a ton of money and time and ultimately help your business grow.

Why Outsource?

Outsourcing or off shoring can be a controversial subject, with the increased popularity of outsourcing many services to countries like China and India, often poorly affecting the quality of work. But done right outsourcing can be a great solution to help your business grow.

Why Outsource?
If you’re wondering why your business needs to outsource, consider the following:
1. One of the most common reasons for outsourcing is to lower operational or labour costs.
2. Outsourcing helps a business to maintain its primary focus. By outsourcing areas of the business that are not necessarily your specialty and take up time, there are more organisational resources available to focus on the core business processes.
3. Access to a specialised knowledge base. By delegating tasks that are not your businesses area of specialism, you are outsourcing them to a business that can provide detailed and specialist knowledge, facilitating the smooth running of these tasks.
4. Outsourcing can help a business to reach new markets by bringing production or services closer to new markets.

When to Outsource

Keeping in mind the above reasons the right time to outsource will be different for every business. I can best demonstrate the right time to outsource with an example of a mid-sized security company in Tunbridge Wells, England that I did some work for about a year ago.

The business was doing well, so well in fact that the company had grown from the 2 founding members to a staff of about 20 within 2 years. The staff were all very skilled with security systems but not so great with the IT systems which had become necessary to keep track of bookings, client records and company finances. When the company was small the amount of IT and admin was much more manageable. Now that the company had grown, its staff were spending a large amount of working time struggling with IT systems.

The problem was that there was not enough IT work to justify the hiring of a dedicated member of staff. Training the team on the software was a potential solution but any new staff would have to be trained in this and it would still take up a certain amount of the team’s time, leaving them unable to focus on their core responsibilities. The decision was made to look for a company which provided IT support in Tunbridge Wells, which had expert knowledge in the IT sector. Although managers within the company were wary about the initial spend, after 3 months it became clear how outsourcing this task had given so much time back to the team that they could focus more on customer service which had the knock on effect of improving upsells and cross sells by almost 5%.

Who to Outsource to?

Although I have described here the benefits of outsourcing, it is not something to be taken on lightly. You have to carefully consider the ability of the partner to uphold your company values and standards. Outsourcing should not mean a drop in quality, if anything the specialist knowledge of the third party should improve the quality of the work being performed and thoughtful negotiations should be entered into as part of this consideration process.

Thanks for Reading

Thanks for reading; I hope it’s helped you with future outsourcing decisions. If you enjoyed reading this check out some of my other articles on Wikinut such as Budget Planning: Time is Money and follow me on Twitter too.

Image Credits:
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/lain32/8130992407/">Lαin</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/smithser/6926020527/">Brian Smithson (Old Geordie)</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/9619972@N08/1350940605/">just.Luc</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">cc</a>

Tags

It Support, Outsourcing

Meet the author

author avatar BradYoung04
I am a MBA grad who can transform your business. Follow me for straight talking insights into running successful businesses in a fast paced world. I am always working or surfing in the Californian sun

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