Outsourcing certain functions of a company is a good response to a lack of manpower and a need to save expenses. When you outsource some of your business tasks, you will find more time on your hands to concentrate on other important aspects of your business. It also makes it easier to expand your company and establish contacts overseas.
Outsourcing is the term for a business relationship between a company and external providers that perform specific tasks like payroll, web hosting, customer relations, and other essential jobs. This arrangement includes a contractual agreement with a third party not on the company’s payroll and therefore might include some challenges in effective management. You have to follow certain measures to make sure that outsourcing will efficiently work for you and your business.
Sharing your vision with the entire outsourcing team is a vital first step to success with outsourcing. A team will perform better if they know exactly what is expected of them and understand the overall goals of the company. Write these goals down to remind team members of their role.
Make sure you keep in touch with your outsourced team. Have them keep in touch with you at regular intervals, also. Without a healthy flow of communication between you and your team, errors and misunderstandings will inevitably sneak into the work and not be noticed until the project is completely off course.
Emails are a good idea, but don’t exclusively use this method. Meetings should be held in real time through conference calls or video chat sessions. Vocal communication offers immediate question and answer feedback, and therefore ensures that your needs are understood and are being properly executed.
You can also keep better tabs on the pace of the project by using milestones and checklists. Establish designated checkpoints during the life of the project, at which time members must present you with the amount of work they have thus far completed. In this way, you are sure to meet all of your deadlines. Keeping milestones will ensure your team will not be rushing about at the last minute, or veering off course somewhere along the way.
Outsourcing does not mean relinquishing yourself of all responsibility. To keep everything on track, actively manage the project and maintain relative control of the outsourced aspects of your business. Regularly check out the online project management software to let everyone know that you are periodically checking in on work status. Alternatively you might want to assign the project management aspect to another set of hands. Hold regular webinars, teleconferences, or meetings to give constant feedback and discuss quality concerns or revisions that you may need to make to the project schedule.
When you are working in a team, your relationship with the team members will go a long way toward improving work quality and productivity. Instead of assuming a boss-like attitude, view your outsourcing members as partners. Treat the team with respect, and they will return the favor. Show that you appreciate good work. You can guarantee a long, beneficial relationship with your team if you consistently reward them with encouragement and appreciation.
As your business grows or you find yourself needing more free time to spend with family, you may start thinking about outsourcing a few tasks. By outsourcing, you can access talented people at a lower cost than hiring a full-time in-house employee. Your outsourcing team can greatly contribute to your company’s success if you take the time to understand how to manage the team properly.