This guest article comes to us from Flexisource IT. Flexisource IT is your best gateway to top-caliber fully managed IT teams dedicated to servicing Australian businesses and startups to scale up and grow rapidly.
Business outsourcing can give any company the boost it needs, whether it is a startup, a small to medium enterprise, or even large corporations. However, just partnering with just any service provider does not necessarily equate to success.
Let’s take a look at why it is important to carefully choose a business outsourcing agency, the things you need to consider, and a few tips for a successful outsourcing partnership.
Why Choosing the Right Business Outsourcing Partner Is Essential
There is no denying that a business outsourcing partner can help a company accomplish its goals. Whether it is by helping you with non-core business processes or by helping you and your in-house team with a project.
In fact, here are a couple of benefits that outsourcing business services can do for your business:
- Less operating costs
- Instant access to experts
- Flexible hours
- Scalable team
- Expand to new markets
- More focus on core functions
However, partnering with any business outsourcing agency does not guarantee this. Consequently, it can potentially impede the growth of your business and cost you more money rather than help you cut down costs.
Things To Consider Before Outsourcing Business Services
With that said, we listed a couple of factors influencing successful outsourcing that you need to carefully consider beforehand.
What Is the Expected Level of Supervision?
It is good to be involved with your outsourced team. However, the level of supervision required from you should be at least a minimum. This is because a third-party team usually has its own project manager already aside from the necessary talents that you have requested.
What Are the Points of Contact?
In relation to the one mentioned above are the points of contact. Specifically, who are the people you should get in touch with for any questions, updates, and clarifications about the projects and processes?
If the potential business outsourcing agency does not have a fixed-point person, then it can be a red flag that points to internal disorganization within the third-party agency.
What Is the Expected Turnaround Time for the Delivery of Work?
Another thing to carefully consider is the turnaround time for tasks and projects.
While it is tempting to opt for any agency with lower rates when choosing outsourcing business services, it can potentially blowback. To be specific, a third-party provider that consistently missed deadlines and has a backlog of projects is counterintuitive already.
What Are the Tools and Technologies the Business Outsourcing Partner Is Using?
Business outsourcing agencies should also have the right tools to help teams perform more efficiently and effectively.
With that said, your company might already have your own tools and technologies that you use in-house. You can lend or share some of these with the third-party team for practical reasons. But you should still expect potential outsourcing partners to have the right tools as part of their outsourcing business services.
What are the terms in the SLA?
A Service Level Agreement (SLA) is a written commitment between you and the third-party provider. This provides the important details of your agreement, responsibilities, expectations, and penalties. So, before signing the SLA, make sure the terms are in your favor as the client.
9 Secret Tips to A Successful Business Outsourcing
Knowing what to consider and look for in any potential third-party provider plays a big role in the beginning. However, it might not be enough. So, here is a list of secret tips to outsourcing successfully that you can as well.
Define Your Goals Early
Identify what are the reasons why you want to partner with a business outsourcing company. List down the goals you want your company to achieve and help you lay down your objectives for outsourcing.
Choose the Right Outsourcing Model
It is a lot easier to choose the right outsourcing model when you already have a list of objectives and business goals that you need to achieve.
For example, you want to grow your startup IT business. However, the labor costs to hire in-house seasoned developers might be too expensive. As an alternative, you opt for a dedicated team of offshore developers to save time and money.
Start with a Small Team First
This particular tip is important for businesses that are new to outsourcing. However, it is also applicable to other companies as well that already have prior experience.
Always start small in the beginning. It can help you get better insight if a third-party agency is good and if the outsourcing business services provided are up to your standards. Thereafter, you can opt to scale up and grow your third-party team if you are satisfied with the initial results.
Collaborate with Existing In – house Workforce
Outsourcing still carries a lot of risks. Moreover, third-party teams still undergo a learning curve to understand your company and processes outside of their tasks and responsibilities. This is where your in-house staff can help. They can help guide and manage external teams.
Establish a Clear Communication Process
Communication is key, especially for outsourcing. It is important to establish as early as possible the communication flows, point people, preferred channels, tools, and processes. Moreover, scheduling periodic check-ins will also prove to be very helpful.
Provide the Right Training Materials and Tools
As mentioned earlier, third-party teams need to understand your company and processes to better serve and function as a part of your business. A way to do this is to provide the necessary training materials and tools at the start of the project.
Create a Healthy Outsourcing Culture and Relationship
Meeting the standards of your business is essential. But, keep in mind that micromanaging is off-limits.
Third-party teams can be held accountable for the quality of their outputs and delivery time. However, it is not healthy to hold them to the same level of accountability as full-time in-house staff. Instead, you can help align your third-party team with your company’s vision and goals, and provide the necessary resources.
Pay Attention to Onboarding
Onboarding is a crucial step. This is the point wherein you can effectively convey your company’s expectations, standards, business, and communication flows. Being as clear as possible will aid in guiding your third-party team.
Keep Up with the trends in Business Outsourcing Services
Lastly, it is essential to know what are the latest trends and where the future of the BPO is heading. There are always new innovations in the BPO sector. For a business, understanding what these are and how to use them to your advantage can improve efficiency and lower costs.
In the end, it is understanding your objectives and taking a proactive approach to aid your third-party team that will ensure that your partnership with a business outsourcing agency will be fruitful and help your business prosper.
What has been your experience with outsourcing professional (or even personal) tasks? Has it been a smooth experience or one with various roadblocks to work around? Share your insights by commenting below!