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Time to outsource? 3 important questions to ask yourself

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As a business owner, you’re likely to think about outsourcing some of your tasks sooner or later. There could be different reasons behind this and every process you consider could have an impact on how the rest of your company operates. Use this handy checklist to ensure you’ve made the right decision. In the end, it could save you from wasting valuable time and money.

Make the wrong decision, and you might end up spending more than you intended as well as compromising the competitive edge you’ve worked so hard to achieve.

Is it a routine process?

Some tasks are more tedious than others – there is no doubt about it. No matter what kind of trade or service your business is operating in, you have a few tasks in common with almost any decent company out there; bookkeeping, payroll, IT support, HR, and general accounting.

As a small business with limited resources, you might consider transferring to software you can operate yourself – rather than paying a third party to do it.

This makes a lot of sense to the money-savvy ones; just beware of complicated software which requires time and effort to understand as it could cost you more than just simply outsourcing it. It’s a good idea to keep track of the time you spend on understanding it and becoming proficient, calculate how much it cost you with regards to the work you could have focused on instead, and consider which option is more cost-effective.

Routine tasks might be seen as dull and repetitive – but it’s vital to get it right as it plays such a big part of your company’s survival. Don’t decide to save money by using a software if it’s not going to be done right; hiring someone else to do it flawlessly is going to save you from a lot of administrative trouble.

Does it have a competitive edge?

You know better than any what makes you stand out on the market – and what you can outsource without anyone really noticing. You can hand over anything to a third party that requires specialized skills, such as those of a web designer, content creator, and IT – unless your business benefits from doing these in-house. Customer support is something you always should try to do yourself as it builds a relationship with your existing market.

It doesn’t make as much sense, on the other hand, to boast about having an in-house IT-support unless you actually run an IT company.

Will it cost more to train someone than to outsource it?

Everyone needs to be online today in order to be seen, it’s just something we’ll have to come to terms with. It means that you’ll be presented with a lot of specialized tasks that you didn’t intend on including in the first place. Your competitors are talking about SEO and content creation, though, and so should you. If these are skills neither you nor anyone in your company are in possession of, it might be a good idea to hire someone else.

To maintain a blog, for example, or run a social media campaign requires a certain interest and dedication to be successful. You could always train someone to do it, but keep in mind that time is also resources – and your employee might benefit your company by being productive and doing the job they were hired to do.

Outsource it and allow your team to focus on what they do best; it will be more cost-effective at the end of the day.

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