Why you should be Outsourcing
Most business owners have many great talents but we all have our limits; be it time, skill-set or even the desire to complete those essential yet routine tasks. With any growing business, there will come a point when trying to do it all could equate to missed revenue-generating opportunities. This ultimately means you reach a point at which the business will fail to grow and you risk becoming disillusioned.
So what can you do?
If you hire someone on a permanent basis you will incur costs such as holiday & sick pay, pension & NI contributions and ongoing training, not to mention the costs of recruitment. There must be a more cost-effective solution to this.
The key is to outsource
Many aspects of your business can be outsourced. Business Process Outsourcing, or BPO for short, gives you back your time to enable you to focus on income generation and ultimately business growth. It makes sense to handover non-core activities to someone who has the expertise in the fields of marketing, HR, IT, admin, social media, SEO and graphic design.
There are some pretty impressive stats on outsourcing and I was surprised at the extent to which companies currently outsource work. The chart below shows some key facts about UK outsourcing.
The common misconception is that outsourcing is reserved for large corporate organisations or governments. But the reality is that all businesses, of any size, can effectively outsource aspects of its business to freelancers with expertise, from charities and local government to SME’s and sole traders.
This provides many opportunities for small businesses to collaborate with people who they would not be able to employ on a full-time basis. One way is access this pool of talent is through Work Hubs. These are popping up all over the country and are a great tool to assist collaboration. This combined with the fact that technology has vastly improved means that freelancers can work from any location and still be able to provide a great service at a lower cost.
Evidence as to why businesses outsource is clear to see in the below graphic:
You can see from the chart that improving efficiencies has become the main reason that people outsource and as a result of improving efficiencies you naturally reduce costs and improve your bottom line.
When to Outsource?
This will be different for each business depending on if you already employ people, how many you currently employ, and the type of business. Generally, when you spend most of your time doing the routine tasks that take you away from your core business, it means it’s time to get help.
Ask yourself this: could your time be better spent?
What to Outsource?
All businesses have processes that can be outsourced from HR, marketing, accounts, SEO, social media and administration. In addition to routine business processes you could have a project coming up that might need additional support. Maybe you have a one off market research project or data entry tasks both of which are incredibly time consuming for small businesses.
Who to Outsource too?
Many freelancers gain work through recommendation and networking. Ask around at your local Work Hub or networking event. There are loads of us on the internet too. Just do your research first and ask questions. It’s also a good idea to meet your potential freelancer over a cup of tea, say hello and have a chat about what you need. If they can’t help you, the chances are they know someone that will.
So outsourcing is great for both you, as the business owner, and the freelancer. You gain by being more productive, reducing your costs, gaining flexibility, driving your business’ growth and ultimately developing a competitive advantage. Its also great for a freelancer like me as I get to utilise my skills, develop my talents and be with my family