We’ve all heard that outsourcing is a great way to find the expert help that you need, working the hours that you want, whenever you need them. It’s also a great way for any business to expand and contract as needed during busy and lean times. But, as you can imagine there are some common outsourcing mistakes that you will definitely want to avoid.
While cost is an important factor in hiring anyone to help you, it should not be your only consideration. If you want expert help, you’ll need to realize that you must pay expert prices. It’s important to realize that when you hire a contractor, you’re not hiring full-time help. So the initial hourly cost might seem high, but it will still be less than hiring that same expert on a full time basis.
Whenever anyone mentions outsourcing people automatically think this means outsourcing overseas at drastically reduced costs. That’s fine if that is what you want, however certain projects can also be outsourced locally or to other developed countries, it all comes down to hiring the best expert that you can afford for the job that can meet your deliverables.
No contractor is going to be able to do everything for you expertly. Most contractors focus on one specific niche; therefore, you should hire more than one person to handle the different requirements of each project. The simple truth is; you’ll end up with better results if more than one person is working on any one project.
Before you pass work to anyone to do, you need to have developed systems and procedures so that they understand your requirements, include such things as examples of deliverables, and understand how you’ll communicate with your contractor in a fast and easy manner during the project.
If you have no idea what you want a contractor to do, then you won’t be able to write a request for proposal that will get a good answer. Know exactly what you need done, before you even start advertising for anyone to help you.
When you start outsourcing, you should never have anyone do the main things that you’re considered the go to expert for. Nor should you, except in the case of customer service and lead generation, have anyone but you and highly trained employees dealing directly with your customers.
The key to successful outsourcing is good communication. Set up a project management system like Basecamp.com and/or Dropbox.com to communicate with the people you outsource work to.
When you start working with someone new, start with a small project with a beginning and end first. That way you can determine how well you work with the contractor and how they work with you, you can also work out any kinks before signing a long-term contract or before giving them a larger project.
When you hire a contractor to do something for you, the focus should be on what they deliver to you, not how they do it or even when they do it as long as they meet your deadlines that you set. Contractors should focus on results, and not your process.
Outsourcing can be a great boost for your business, but not if you don’t plan properly, know what you want first, and communicate clearly with anyone you outsource to. If you really want outsourcing to work, don’t skip any of these points.