For larger companies, outsourcing isn’t a new phenomenon, but for many smaller businesses it is a foreign concept, which means there is still a certain reluctance to outsourcing day to day tasks within a business. However, the increasing availability of outsourcing companies and individual freelancers, along with numerous success stories, means outsourcing is more readily available to small businesses and is a very viable and effective method of working.
Finding the right method for delegating workloads can have a significant impact on small companies, allowing the owners and in-house employees more time and money to focus on business growth. Does this sound like an attractive prospect? Well, here’s a few ideas to get you thinking about why and how you should outsource tasks within your small company.
For many entrepreneurs the thought of handing over the reins to someone else can be a daunting prospect. Your business is your “baby”, you know it inside-out, but poor delegation can have a negative impact, so maybe it’s time to look at the bigger picture. Consider, how you spend time within the business, if you spend more time working ‘in’ your business than ‘on’ your business, perhaps it’s time to consider where you can improve the efficiency of your operations through outsourcing labour intensive administrative tasks. Thus, you will free up more of your time to work on developing your business, whether it’s sourcing new suppliers, new business or improving customer service.
The whole idea of outsourcing within a small business is to make business operations and services more efficient, but you will need to consider certain elements to make sure that outsourcing is the right solution, so ask yourself:
1) What preparation do I need to brief an outsourcing partner and how much time will this take?
2) Can the outsourcing partner achieve the right level of quality and delivery time?
3) Do they offer any guarantees on quality and delivery?
4) Can they provide professional references from previous clients?
5) By outsourcing, how much time and money will I save?
6) What follow-up time will be required to ensure the job is completed correctly?
7) How will we communicate? Are there any language barriers, time-zone differences or other factors to consider? Do they offer 24 hour support when I need it?
8) What is their process for handling mistakes or errors?
By considering all of these factors prior to making a partnership with an outsourcing company or individual, you should be able to effectively manage the hand-over and work implementation more effectively and ensure that it is a cost-effective solution.
In-house versus Outsourcing
There are many benefits to choosing an outsourced partner over in-house employees. Mainly, you can drastically reduce the cost for the work and increase productivity, as a freelancer or outsourcing company is likely to cost less and be a specialist in the field of work with all the tools and resources to carry out the work quicker.
However, one of the major factors in successful outsourcing is the time/money savings versus quality. There is little point in choosing an outsourcing partner over in-house, solely based on cost, as if the quality standard isn’t there, you will still end up doing a certain amount of work in-house, which can defeat the objective of outsourcing in the first place.
When it comes to outsourcing, ensure that your outsourcing partner ticks all the boxes for your requirements, whether it’s carrying out administrative tasks such as product photo editing and uploading or content writing. The key is for them to successfully carry out the tasks, reducing the time and money you spend on completing these tasks, allowing more time to focus on other areas of the business.
Time and cost saving example
There are two major benefits of using PSDclip to edit your images this is Time and money… Firstly time If you had 500 images that needed editing at roughly 6 images per hour equates to around 84 hours work which is almost half a months work! Where PSDclip could deliver the images in 24 hours which is a time saving of around 80%! Secondly cost, 500 images to outsource to PSDclip would cost around £325 (depending on product and complexity) where as an in house graphics designer would cost around £1000 for half the month (this is without national insurance sick pay etc), which is a huge 70% reduction in costs