The Entrepreneur’s Guide To Outsourcing
I would imagine that every entrepreneur dreams of building a completely self sufficient business. That would mean having all the resources, knowledge and expertise in-house so they can be prepared for everything that comes their way. Unfortunately, this is not the reality for the vast majority of companies.
Many companies generally outsource some aspect of their business for any number of reasons. That is not necessarily a bad thing, though. In fact, there are many benefits to outsourcing that should be considered.
What Is Outsourcing?
Outsourcing involves the hiring of a person, team or company outside of your organisation to perform designated services. Essentially, instead of hiring for an in-house team, you are looking to contract workers from outside the business. This opens up several different opportunities for building and structuring a business, each with their own positives and negatives.
There are many scenarios in which a business would choose to outsource work. For example, it can be a cost effective alternative to hiring an in-house team, and can increase working capacity in the short-term to meet the requirements of a project.
Time and expertise are also prominent factors in the decision. We will cover some more of the benefits of outsourcing in a bit. For now, just know that it offers an alternative way to run your business that may save you money.
Also, just to clarify, outsourcing is not the same as working from home. There are definitely some parallels, as you are working with people outside of your office, after all. However, working from home differentiates itself from outsourcing.
This is due to the fact that the home workers are employed directly by the company, while outsourcing involves contracting with a separate business or entity. It makes for a completely different work dynamic, and overall involves a different level of integration into your business.
Why Do Companies Outsource?
The benefits of outsourcing are easy to see. Looking back into the reasons why companies may choose to outsource, we need to understand the differences between building a team in-house and outsourcing work.
As you can imagine, finding talented, qualified workers who will fit well with your company is a long and potentially expensive process. There are also limitations in scope as these searches are, more often than not, local rather than global.
This is especially an issue if there is a particularly large project that needs to be completed within a strict deadline. Speed is of the essence in cases like this, so, as mentioned before, the business could look to outsource work in the short-term to increase their capacity in order to complete the project in time.
Likewise, if it is a skill or service you would only require intermittently, it works out to be much more time and cost effective to outsource. This is essentially the concept that the whole freelance industry is built upon.
Of course, outsourcing doesn’t always have to be for the shorter-term. Many companies completely outsource whole departments either due to the aforementioned time and cost issues or as a way to leverage the knowledge and expertise that dedicated agencies offer. Marketing, customer support and IT development are common examples for this strategy.
Another benefit of outsourcing is that it allows for more focus on the core services of the business, rather than splitting focus between other aspects that are less important or critical to their success. All these reasons combined, it really paints a picture of the best scenarios in which companies would want to outsource.
How Does It Work?
If the benefits of outsourcing mentioned above sound attractive, it is worth considering whether you are able to outsource some aspect of your business. It is a case of defining what the core service of your business is and planning out from there.
Does this role require a full time employee, or would a freelancer suffice? Do you have the space, resources and facilities to maintain a call center, or would it be better to outsource that segment of the business? These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself.
However, if you do decide to outsource for your business, you need to do your research. Find out whether the people or team you want to outsource work to provide a high quality service.
Another big consideration when selecting who to outsource to is whether your business cultures fit together. As you will be working together towards a common goal, the ability to collaborate effectively is important. A certain amount of trust is also required to ensure everything runs smoothly.
Thankfully, there are plenty of options available out there. There are vast amounts of dedicated agencies and individual freelancers are available for any number of tasks you need.
Outsourcing Case Study: Livecards
For an example of a business who has successfully leveraged outsourcing to Tekdef, look no further than Livecards.
Livecards is an e-commerce website that specialises in providing customers with legitimate digital codes and gift cards. Their catalogue includes Xbox, Playstation and PC games, as well as online subscriptions for PSN and Xbox Live.
Livecards was looking to outsource some elements of their business, most notably the running of their shops to ensure everything is as smooth as possible. What this means for Livecards is that they can rest assured knowing their customers are experiencing a top-notch service.
At the same time, they are avoiding the bloat of the costs associated with finding, hiring, training and maintaining a team in-house to do so. Ultimately, it allows them more time to focus on sourcing products for their stores.
Outsourcing was key to enabling Livecards to scale to their current size today, with 31 web shops available across 11 countries, serving more than one million customers. As said, with proper thought and planning, outsourcing can work wonders for a business.
Need More Information?
Hopefully, you now know more about outsourcing, its benefits and whether it is right for your business. Take some time to weigh out the positives and negatives. If it is right for you, then consider getting in touch with us at Tekdef.
We are experienced in helping businesses succeed by providing high-quality services and resources, whether outsourcing web and mobile development, design, marketing or other IT work.
Don’t restrict yourself by what is available in your company – contact the experts in the field and enhance your business today.