How do I go about outsourcing when we cannot handle the work in-house anymore?
I am in the start up phase of a web link for business. I am able to handle the production right now but once it gets to a point where I cannot do it in house, how do I outsource and trust the people to handle the volume?
Seek strategic partners from referrals ONLY..... if you can't find that, then you need to do some deep due diligence as to their staffing, work volume, sales, customer satisfaction levels, service levels, etc... You should put full focus on this prior to partnering with anyone. Then most importantly, be sure any agreement/contract formed includes an agreed upon Service Level Agreement - which states what you expect the partner to do, how they service, what you expect from them in order to give them any fee for the work they do.
Also consider the various outsourcing arrangements - all business comes through you then you pay them. Business can come through them (on their paper, so to speak), but your business is part of that agreement, and on a weekly/monthly basis, you both review business and sales, and they then pay you an agreed fee.
Do your homework here.
Finding a trustworthy outsource team is a very difficult task especially when it involves sensitive and proprietary information that you don't want copied or stolen. Do not answer the email spams that hit your business account offering outsourcing services. This is a situation where you want to talk to users that you know and trust. Word of mouth from your closest business relationships will give you the best route to go to find an outsourcing team. If you don't know of any, I hate to say that you can trust me and I can give you some trustworthy names since you don't know me, but you have to take the plunge somewhere. Talking to a person like me who has gone through the pains of developing a professional outsource team is probably a good place to start. Connect with me on LinkedIN, check out my profile, I can help you, and will give you some good advice without looking to profit from giving good advice and some names.
Mary - all of the people make excellent points. One more key consideration is that you indicate that you expect the volume to grow.
Unplanned volume can directly impact the ability of the outsourcer to deliver to the key metrics that should be in your SLA, i.e. you expect them to complete an order in 72 hours from receipt. An experienced outsourcer should require that you agree in the contract to a forecasting process where you provide them with your expected volumes, this could be as frequent as monthly until volumes stabilize or grow at a predictable rate.
If your volume exceeds the capacity that you told them to plan for or committed to in the contract, you will have to make adjustments to your delivery commitments, which could impact your business negatively, or worse, time frames are kept but quality is reduced which could lead to lost clients.
The only exceptions to a forecast requirement should be if the volume you are discussing with them is an insignificant increase to their existing volume, i.e.your volume is less than 1% of similar work they are doing or the people with the skills necessary to do your work are readily available in their location, can be rapidly added, and can take on the tasks with little training. The second only works if the outsourcer has a pool of contingent workers that they have previously employed that can be brought in on short notice.
A number of the contract compliance issues I deal with for my clients stem from a lack of capacity planning from both sides of the agreement.
Congrats on thinking ahead. First step is to analyze your production process now and start to create standard operating procedures. You'd be surprised how many steps you do intuitively. Next, look at which pieces do not require either your expertise or personality to complete. Those tasks you want to keep but everything else should be delegated. You'll want to take a delegation course to make sure you have the mindset and technique to lead your team well. If you're interested in course launches in March.
There are plenty of outsourcing firms out there (I'm one of them ), the first thing you do is your due diligence. Check for reviews, ratings, and references. You do this after you came up with a budget and job duties for the outsourcing services.
Richard Stern-Check the professional organizations in your town. Find candidates in your profession. Check references. Make sure they have insurance. Have them do a trial example of their work.for you.
Firstly, I would like to congratulate to enter your foot in the entrepreneurship.
Mary, Outsourcing is really a good option to start when you do not have enough budget to hire more employees. As you are new in the field, you might be skeptical about picking right agency to outsource.
While looking for the same, you may check their reviews and ratings from their previous clients via their outsourcing services page as FATbit Technologies does here: http://www.fatbit.com/website-design-company/outsourcing-services.html
You can check their guidelines about outsourcing work to FATbit + their previous clients reviews. This will help you in deciding if the agency is going to be the right option for you to start with :)
TRUST you BELLY, your Belly never lies, your head may say one thing, your heart another, but Your BELLY never lies.....that is how you understand and intuitively know TRUST when you see it or outsource to a new organization
Outsourcing is convenient. Companies that work in this niche have their working processes established and adjusted to be as efficient as possible. So, you’ll be able to keep your hand on the pulse of the development progress—you will get daily reports from the project manager or business analyst and weekly reports from the development team on what’s already done and what’s going to be done.
These 6 steps towards successful outsourcing may help you: https://4tifier.com/key-benefits-of-outsourcing-insurtech-software-development-cost-savings-and-more/
Mary, can you elaborate your question? Web link means links for search engine optimization or something else?
Join a networking group. I was in BNI (bni.com) a few years back and it was really helpful. You build relationships when networking, which builds that firm foundation you're looking for in business longevity. Good luck!
Hey MaryAnne you're one smart cookie. This is exactly the right time to think & plan to build your team - BEFORE you need it.
You want to answer two questions to start. It's easy to over complicate this so these are basic questions:
1. What repetitive projects do I have?
2. Who else can do this?
Here's what I recommend my clients do. Fold a piece of paper into quarters so you have 4 boxes. Label each box from left to right: daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly.
Starting with daily take 45 seconds and write down everything you do including marketing. Do the same for each box. Then, mark the top 3 priorities in each list, meaning these things generate revenue.
Viola you just created your outsourcing list. of course it has to be refined but you're in your way. Hope that helps!
Well firstly you will likely get inundated via email of many...many outsourcing companies offering lots of personalized engineering support. Only use those that you can find a personal reference.
You may also consider looking for industry partnership's with vendors who have some form of interoperability with your products and there is a benefit to creating strategic program. If you deal with a company that fits this extremely well then there may be opportunity for acquisition later. Ensure your legal position around IP is solid.
I think the 2 most important things are to:
(1) Look at their track record to be sure they have successfully done what they claim they will do for you.
(2) Understand how they make their money and whether their business goals align with yours.
If they're paid by the hour, you're incentivizing them to work slowly/inefficiently.
Being paid-for-performance is better because they'll make money when you make money.
The best arrangement by far, however, is when they are paid-for-performance AND they contribute to the costs of the marketing activities they recommend (e.g., advertising, direct mail, etc.). In this case, you are motivating them to grow your sales AND the cost contribution motivates them to do so cost-effectively.
While outsourcers with this business model are harder to find, it's worth the effort.
The biggest myth about outsourcing is not cost but the kind of extra overhead you need to take to ensure work gets done. It actually adds more on your plate than it takes away. So be very careful. Best way to go is to get into a true 'partnership' where you can share risks and rewards.
From my own experience I can recommend you to outsource the tasks to non-US developers. To Ukrainian or Romanian developers for example. When I was looking for the team of sofware developers, I realized that finding talented programmers who could fit right into my team and share the same corporate culture and values was very complicated. I was lucky to find this article https://diceus.com/ukrainian-developers-second-best/ , so I decided to try my luck and hire the Ukrainian developers. The software is still in the process of elaboration but it promises to be exactly what I've initially expected. When it's up and running, I will let you know about my experience.
Well, it is quite a difficult question. But I think that there are a few different ways to run your business. You should always stay on, you should stay in touch and keep up. The business world is changing very fast and perhaps there are ways that can help you now. I could only recommend that https://igniteoutsourcing.com/ brand new resources. Guys are really effective when your problem concerns time management and outscoring, HR and all those things. Try to make a call.