Few companies across the world prefer to work independently, especially larger firms with no restrictions on budget. However, many businesses form partnerships with other like-minded companies and individuals for maximum benefits. Working with an outsourced company can help businesses to run more effectively and efficiently, but deciding when and how to outsource can be a challenging decision.
Companies often outsource some of their services, but on the other hand, several businesses consider outsourcing as their strategic and most important part. If we take Facebook, for example, the company outsources many of its operations, such as content moderation tasks. It is understood that companies only choose to outsource those tasks, which may take up much of their time and cost.
So how can you outsource and get the best results? Here is the guide to decide when and what should you outsource:
What Should You Outsource?
The most crucial phase is when the companies have to decide on outsourcing and WHAT should they outsource. The service that you choose to outsource primarily depends on the nature of your business. Before deciding on this, you should ask yourself what your in-house team is capable of? Are they able to handle multiple task load without putting an increased burden on costs? Following questions will help you decide what you should outsource:
- Which of the services is taking the most of your time and diverting the focus from the central core of the business?
- Is there any task you are not very skilled at but still forced to do it because of low budget, time issue, or any other excuse?
- Are their any tasks that could contribute a lot to the productivity of your business, but you are unable to find the right resource for it?
After you answer these questions, you’ll be in a better position to create a list of the tasks that should be outsourced. Once you’ve decided what needs to be outsourced, a precise checklist will help you get clear about how the outsourced functions are going to be implemented:
- The jobs that need to be outsourced
- An estimated budget of the project
- Will it be billed hourly or project by project basis
- Due date
- How many resources are required
- Who’ll be overseeing the outsourced team / interacting with them
- Is it a one-time task or a long term project?
When Should You Outsource?
Another most crucial decision is when you should outsource a task. For this purpose, companies must perform a cost and time calculation. There might be many tasks that you can easily get done in-house, but due to time restriction, those tasks may need to be outsourced. For example, if you are running an online crowdfunding platform and want to revamp your website for the ease of donors, you may be considering to outsource the UI UX designer. The reason for outsourcing is; due to the nature of the business, web designers, as well as developers, are not required on a permanent basis. Therefore, by clearly establishing your goals and discussing timeline with your outsourced company, you can get the task done in reasonable cost without going through the painful hiring process.
Strike a Balance
To outsource effectively, companies must keep a balance between the tasks that are being done internally and those that will be done by outside parties. It requires a strategical approach and the right people who can oversee all. Although a large percentage of companies consider this strategy, only 20%-30% can carry it correctly. The first and most important thing is to carry out a detailed study on how to outsource the activities and under what criteria, what to outsource, and to what extent. The tasks/personnel who are going to be outsourced must be decided so that there are no tasks left undone. Then it is necessary to know how much outsourcing will cost, analyzing the market offer and which ones meet expectations. Also, companies must calculate the profitability of the function to outsource before and after doing it.