Outsourcing has received some negative publicity from those who think it reduces employment opportunities for U.S. citizens and sends jobs overseas. The truth is that outsourcing is a global industry specifically geared toward making companies more efficient.
When certain tasks are outsourced, it frees local staffers to learn new skills and take on new responsibilities. Most companies outsource; business-printing outsourcing, for example, is common in many organizations. You don’t have to be a large firm to outsource successfully; small business outsourcing can be a valuable competitive tool when done right.
Before you start outsourcing business, you’ll need to determine what you expect and find a solution that meets your needs. If you outsource business the right way, you can:
- Save time and money
- Spend more time building your customer base
- Give more challenging opportunities to your employees
- Expand your business quickly and cost-effectively
Decide what to outsourceChoose between business process outsourcing (marketing, technology) or business services outsourcing (record-keeping, technology support). The most successful business outsourcing projects are those that target the right jobs.
Small Business Administration can provide information on many aspects of outsourcing.
Know the legal requirementsMake sure you know what you can and can't outsource legally, based on employee's rights and tax requirements.
IRS provides information on tax regulations. Groups such as the Society for Human Resource Management can provide additional help. Outsourcing Law offers legal perspectives and advice.
Find the best places to outsource workFor business process outsourcing, India is the country most people think of, but make sure you've explored all possible outsourcing avenues so that you get the best deal.
Determine the costsOutsourcing is supposed to save you money, so find out how much it will cost you to outsource. Get an outsourcing business quote from a variety of business outsourcing companies, and find out what each company promises.
- Make sure your employees understand what you're outsourcing before you start outsourcing business.
- Monitor your business outsourcing projects regularly to make sure your costs and results are what you wanted and expected.
- Pay attention to your clients and customers; outsourcing should be a seamless process for them, so if it isn't, you will want to find out why.