As a business owner or HR professional, you are busy. Your organization is growing. Life is good.
But you’re often overwhelmed, you are always exhausted, and it feels like you have way too much on your plate daily.
When is it time to surrender? When do you admit you need to outsource some of your work — especially your daily administrative work?
5 Ways Outsourcing Can Help Your Business
The daily grind of administrative busywork can drain your precious time and zap your energy. Even worse, it can prevent you from focusing on the things that really allow you to generate revenue and grow your business. This is where outsourcing comes into play. By handing tasks like bookkeeping, data entry, reception, and more to a third-party supporter, you can gain the freedom to focus on the mission-critical tasks that drive your organization.
1. Gain Flexibility
Some times are busier than others. That’s just a fact of life in business. Because of this, your goals may fluctuate during the year, and you’ll have to adjust your priorities accordingly.
Outsourcing is ideal for achieving the level of flexibility you need to adapt quickly to changing business rhythms. By strategically outsourcing the right tasks, you can even pinpoint opportunities for increased productivity and growth.
2. Cut Costs
Many organizations worry enlisting third-party support will just add another cost to the balance sheet. If you look more closely, you might find that outsourcing can actually be a cost-saving strategy.
For example, when hiring a full-time team member to take over administrative tasks, you must consider more than just the employee’s salary. There are also hidden costs associated with onboarding, training, benefits, and more. What’s more, even when times are slow, you’ll still have to pay that employee.
On the other hand, outsourcing is more scalable. It can help you navigate the busy periods without requiring you to pay someone during slower periods. In this light, it’s easier to see outsourcing as a big picture investment that can dramatically boost long-term revenue.
3. Enhance Efficiency
When you outsource a set of tasks to a professional, those tasks no longer require your attention. That means your team members have more time to focus on things that really create value, leading to a much more efficient use of each employee’s time.
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4. Provide More Consistent Customer Service
As you work through your ever-growing to-do list, it can be easy for certain tasks to fall by the wayside. If those are customer-service tasks, you could end up losing business to your competitors. Prospects won’t simply wait around for you to reach out.
Whether you are following up with a prospect or catching up on customer requests, you are wasting valuable time and resources doing these jobs on your own. You can ensure you don’t fall behind — and that your customers’ questions and concerns are adequately addressed — by outsourcing customer-service tasks to a third-party. That frees you up to focus on driving your business forward.
5. Grow Your Client List
You’re focused on strengthening your relationships with current clients — but that doesn’t leave much time to track down new clients. Outsourcing makes it possible to do both.
Say you have a contact list you have not yet used for outreach or marketing purposes. You could hire a third-party virtual assistant to help you develop an email campaign to gain more leads from that list. In the meantime, you can still ensure your current clients are getting the service they need, too.
Ensure Your Work Is in Capable Hands
Outsourcing can offer many benefits, but it’s important to be strategic about the tasks you decide to outsource. Before handing any work over to a third party, determine why you want to outsource this particular set of tasks and how doing so will benefit your business.
If you are unsure about delegating some of your admin functions to a party outside your company, try answering the following questions first:
- Are there administrative tasks you are not doing that you should be doing?
- Are you stressed every day by the amount of admin work you have to accomplish?
- Do you work long hours?
- Are you losing out on the chance to onboard new customers because you can’t respond on time?
- Do you spend countless hours doing repetitive tasks?
It’s also important to make sure you choose the right outsourcing option, which will depend on your organization’s unique needs. In general, you have two main kinds of options: working with an agency or hiring a freelancer/contractor.
While agencies can be more expensive, they also offer access to an entire staff of professionals and experts representing an array of specialties. Virtual assistants and freelancers tend to be less expensive than agencies, and they are often willing to work on more flexible terms.
Ultimately, the key is understanding that neither choice is inherently better than the other. Carefully consider the pros and cons of each to make the right decision for your company’s particular outsourcing needs.
There’s a reason outsourcing has become so widespread in recent years. Advances in technology allow professionals — whether independent freelancers or employees of big agencies — to work from anywhere at any time, thereby giving more companies access to outsourcing. And companies that do outsource have seen the way it can help them navigate challenging times and save money.
Most importantly, outsourcing is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. You can work with a freelance contractor or commit to a bigger agency depending on your company’s specific situation. That flexibility makes outsourcing a powerful business tool.
Daniel Ramsey is the CEO and founder MyOutDesk (MOD).