As your business grows and evolves, there may come a time when you need to seriously consider moving to the next level – should you outsource? This can be a tricky question to answer, since there are also benefits to hiring more in-house staff instead. As the world of work continues to change rapidly, however, it makes more sense than ever to make efficiencies and streamline your business model in as lean a way as possible. If you’re still undecided, here are some clear benefits that come with outsourcing.
To start with the most obvious one, outsourcing can save you significant amounts of money, with no drop in quality or performance. This one is a no-brainer – you can hire qualified professionals in countries with a lower cost of living than your own, or you can seek freelancers or private contractors that will charge a fraction of what it costs to hire a full time member of staff. Depending on who you outsource, you also save on relevant infrastructure, hardware and technology, and can relax and let your outsourcing partner take care of it.
The great thing about the global marketplace is that you can still be assured of high quality even while making savings. You don’t need to source work from countries like India to make an impact, though. Hire a local freelancer who works on a project basis and you save on needing to employ them full time.
Less red tape
You might be reluctant to outsource simply because it seems like too much hard work. Thankfully, outsourcing does not need to be as grueling and labor intensive as the traditional hiring process. In fact, there are now groups who specialize in connecting you to exactly the right agency for your needs, without you needing to do any extensive legwork.
UK-based companies like Columba, for example, can take your brief and come back to you with a shortlist of vetted companies and agencies that have just the talent your business needs to succeed. This means you save time on hunting down the right people, and have a much lower less risk of outsourcing to companies that are a poor fit.
Whatever the size of your business, chances are that you don’t have a brilliantly qualified employee filling every potential role in the company. Though your business may be good at what it does, there are always going to be blind spots, and this is where outsourcing can actually prove to be an advantage.
When you pair up with groups who focus exclusively on one business area, you are sharing in their experience, their network and their fine-tuned expertise without having to invest in this training or development yourself. This particularly applies to functions that can be costly if done incorrectly, such as marketing or PR. This means you are freed up to focus more energy on what your business does best, while leaving the rest to the professionals.
Though it can be a little scary at first to hand over the reins to an outsourcing partner, the truth is that you’re better protected than you think. If you go with a professional agency, for example, you may find yourself working with pre-selected and approved contractors who have all the necessary experience and training. They’ll be able to draw up a detailed plan of action with a fixed deadline, so you can see clearly where your money is going and what you can expect.
You may find it reassuring that almost all agencies of this kind will accept that the onus is on them to deliver, or at the very least investigate why a particular strategy or solution didn’t work, and make meaningful adjustments moving forward.
Time zone advantage
This is something that people seldom think about when considering an outsource partner, but it can make a huge difference, depending on the nature of your business. If you opt to outsource internationally, you may well be able to have the job done overnight and have your staff wake up to see it’s already delivered by the start of day for them.
You might also be able to gain an advantage if your customers are based around the world and you need, for example, a swift response from someone even when your local staff are fast asleep. Grated, not every business can use this to create a “round the clock” business offering, but for many it can be a clever way of essentially sneaking extra hours into the day.
, The digital evolution of outsourcing
Gov.uk, The Outsourcing playbook
, The real benefits of outsourcing – value beyond the one-time cost saving.