Absolute Services, Inc.

The Keys to Successful Outsourcing

As mentioned in the article “Initial Questions to Ask About Outsourcing,” whenever a company is looking for ways to cut internal costs, they often look at employing an outsourcing strategy to meet this need. Before embarking on such an endeavor, key decision-makers must ask themselves a series of initial questions to understand their goals and the different options available. As previously discussed, the answers you develop will serve as a guide to help you evaluate and gauge the different options that are available. The next step is to explore the different options available to you. While investigating available resources, there are some important points to keep in mind that will help ensure you are successful with your new initiative. Let’s take a look at some of these initial “keys” to establishing a successful outsourcing strategy:
  1. Many times we continue to keep work in-house because it’s “easier and our internal resources already know how to do it.” As soon as this excuse is given, we should ask ourselves the following: Could we not better utilize our internal staff to handle more complex or higher level tasks, thus taking advantage of their strengths, experience, and knowledge, while also offering them the opportunity to be more engaged and more productive employees?
  2. Look at several different options based on the initial questions and narrow down a couple that you want to test and further vet. Start by interviewing different resources and getting information about the services they offer, their company structure and size (if applicable), their experience, and their current customers. What are their goals in working with you and how do they view this business relationship? What are their operating hours? How will they interact with you? In addition to pricing and services offered, you have to dig a little deeper to better understand what they bring to the table.
  3. Understand that there is an upfront investment required when establishing a successful relationship with any resource you choose. Invest in establishing clear procedures and directions that document your requirements, the tasks you need completed, and your expectations to gauging success. This is not an overnight process; your current team will need to be committed to seeing this through and ensuring that your goals, as well as the goals of the resource(s) you have selected (which should be one of your determining factors) are met. Make sure both sides have bought into this and invest the time in establishing this upfront.
  4. Lather . . . rinse . . . repeat. When first establishing the outsource relationship and the processes associated with this, you should always begin with a testing period where you have the resource(s) perform certain tasks/projects and then you evaluate them. Provide clear and concise feedback and then test it again. Did the resource improve or address your recommendations/feedback? This is key, as you will need to evaluate if any improvement was shown and how the feedback was addressed. Look at critical determining factors such as communication, timely response or delivery of items, overall understanding of the needed tasks/deliverables, and overall quality. How did your vendor rate in these different categories? You can’t expect perfection after the first try, and if they show promise in these areas then you should continue testing and fine-tuning. If there are major flaws after the initial testing, then it might be time to investigate a different resource.
  5. Outsourcing is an ongoing endeavor in which you don’t simply “flip a switch” and then let it go. You have to view this relationship as a true partnership with both sides contributing to its success. You have to constantly work with your resource(s) to ensure that they continue to meet your expectations. You also have to ensure that, as your business evolves and practices/procedures change, you update and evolve your relationship with your outsourcing partner. If you have found a true “partner” to meet your needs, engage with them on ways to improve the relationship, look for measures to improve cost and efficiency, and work with them to establish new processes as you fine-tune existing ones to meet the ultimate goal of success.
These different discussion items are not the only “keys” to successful outsourcing, but they are certainly a good starting point. Always keep in mind your overall goals, and hopefully this advice will assist you in achieving these by providing you with some initial ideas and tips on outsourcing. Absolute Service, Inc. is a U.S. company with its own production branch in the Philippines. We also utilize a network of freelancers and subcontractors, along with offshore resources, to offer a hybrid solution that meets our customers’ needs. We provide high-quality and cost effective services to a wide range of publishers, associations, and client all over the world. If we can be of any assistance in helping you with your outsourcing needs, including initial planning and deployment of an outsourcing strategy, please contact us at asi.info@absoluteserv.com.
author avatar

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top