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How to execute a successful outsourcing project in 2020!

What if 2020 is the perfect year to make your outsourcing project a reality? This solution is now easy to implement, proven as reliable and put into practice by many companies who do not hesitate to share their experience. The key is to find the best fit for your needs, just as you would for a classic recruitment.

While the market economy is in full swing, there is no reason why you should not outsource some of your company’s services. As a boss, your time is valuable, as is the time and know-how of your employees and the aim of your company is to achieve its goals productively and efficiently. By outsourcing, you will delegate without abandoning the services concerned and you will benefit from a perfectly calibrated service, while making savings.

Outsourcing in general

Outsourcing is about more than just hiring people from outside your company to take on certain tasks to save you time. Outsourcing is a solution to increase the quality of execution of certain tasks at a lower cost.

Currently, you feel that you are limited by the resources that you have internally. Outsourcing, offshore more specifically, is a window on other resources around the world; Resources trained, educated, economical, flexible, adaptable and available even beyond your operating hours. Let us add to this the technological means that are now available. These make it possible to operate enterprises 24/7.

Another important point to keep in mind regarding outsourcing is that the client company only pays for the services rendered, while internal resources lead to heavy salary costs for the budget (contributions, equipment, sick leave and others).

Executing your outsourcing project in 2020

By choosing outsourcing, your offshore provider will provide you with a turnkey service, but that is always adaptable to your needs. How to initiate your project calmly and effectively?

Identify time-consuming tasks

These are usually time-consuming, repetitive tasks that do not require constant supervision. These can be your human resources, your satisfaction survey service to assess the quality of your services, your remote secretary service, teleprospection or even telemarketing.

By outsourcing these services, your company will free up time to focus on its core business.

Identify low value-added tasks

A task can be time consuming, repetitive, but it is not less important than others for the proper functioning of your business. However, in the case of an SME, if you feel that your internal resources can handle it, it is important to go back and ask yourself the right questions. By focusing on this task, can your employees help advance your business; helping it grow through his core business and helping it position itself favourably in relation to competition?

Identify areas that you are not specialised in

Even as CEO, entrepreneur or boss, you are not an expert in all aspects of your business. These include, for example, communication with customers, the ability to sell your product or service, conversation in the commercial sense and others.

These “gaps”, although human can represent a weak point for the development of your company and especially regarding its place in relation to its competitors. By entrusting the services that require such know-how to professionals, your company will be able to evolve with complete serenity.

Choose the right offshore outsourcing provider

The process of hiring an offshore outsourcing provider is similar to that of hiring a collaborator:

Start by determining your needs: it is a matter of carefully pointing out the time-consuming services and describing them in the smallest detail, for example, if it is a question of answering by telephone, or by e-mail, in French or in English, the time zone and other such factors. Put as much important information as possible in your description while remaining concise.

Choose several specialised companies: cross-check the opinions and experiences of past and current clients, ask for recommendations from your counterparts and use your professional network. If the internet is full of advice and reviews, it is essential to rely on the experience of other companies, but also on the exchanges that you will have with potential candidates and the quality of their answers to choose the right outsourcing provider.

Find the right fit for your company: is the chosen service provider able to offer you solutions before problems arise? Does it have an incident recovery plan? Are its human resources flexible and able to adapt to your needs in terms of working time and workload? Take the time to sort out the potential candidates and then select the most convincing ones and rank them. They are the ones who will pass the final stage of the recruitment process.

Sign the contract: the contract is not just a formality! It must cover all the essential points, your expectations, your imperatives and other factors.

Integrate the concept of outsourcing into your business process: an essential step to ensure smooth and successful outsourcing is to establish a relationship of trust not only with your provider, but also with your employees during the integration process. Familiarise this new partner with the subtleties of your company’s operation, showing them in detail your systems and processes so that they can blend naturally into the flow. Clearly express your expectations in detail, for example, regarding the progress of tasks, meetings or areas requiring improvement.

Communication is undoubtedly the key to successful outsourcing. Clear, direct and frank, it is the pivot of a partnership between two companies that are not necessarily located in the same place on the planet. Certainly, it takes effort, time but by encouraging exchanges, you will lay the foundation for a dynamic collaboration during which you and your provider will become lasting partners. This will impact positively on the productivity and loyalty of your employees and the development of your company, which will thus be recognized for the quality of its services or products.

Wish to outsource? 8 key points to consider

Today, thanks to outsourcing, companies that are overburdened or over-dependent on deadlines can delegate one or more services to specialists. However, the market for outsourcing companies is huge. So, it can be difficult for the entrepreneur to have an accurate idea of the quality of the work of the provider, of its compliance with standards and regulations, of the supervision and of the relevant transmission of information. In addition to this, the entrepreneur must be able to determine which service(s) to outsource and which one(s) his company will keep. The aim is to ensure that no vital action is taken in hand by a third party, however specialised it may be.

If you’re thinking about outsourcing, below are 8 key points that you can work on to make the best decision for your business.

The provider: its history, evolution and added value

Outsourcing is act that should be improvised as it is about the development and success of your business. Thus, it is essential to take the required amount of time, as you would to choose a team leader or key collaborator, to determine which service provider exactly meets your needs and your company’s ambition. In practical terms, you must make an in-depth check of his know-how: does he have the resources needed to take charge of the mission you want him to carry out? Can he illustrate this with examples?

Do not hesitate to compare several providers by distributing the tasks in order to determine which one will be the most efficient and the most reliable. Afterwards, choose the one that will stand out of the lot. It will take time and a financial investment. However, the gain is worth it for your business.

Clearly determine what will be delegated to the provider and what will be kept in-house

The best approach is to determine exactly which tasks:

  • Can be done with simplicity and for which there is a process to follow,
  • Require additional information, improved processes over time and involvement of other team members because of their importance.

This will help you understand which tasks can be delegated because they are simple and which ones must be managed internally because of their importance to your organisation. Keep in mind that internal employees are able to understand the company, its culture and its objectives in more depth.

Outsourcing supervised by an in-house manager

Outsourcing is in no way a sign of total disengagement on the part of the client company. Whether it involves outsourcing, for example, your human resources, your satisfaction survey service in order to measure the quality of your services, your remote secretary services or even your telemarketing services, you must entrust the supervision of operation to an in-house manager. If your company does not have such a profile, you must, without wasting much time, find the appropriate person who will manage the process and who will work with the outsourcing team to ensure that it delivers quality and on time work. He/she will work with the project leader to ensure that all players are on track with planned and achievable objectives.

Hire a consultant to create a flawless standard operating procedure

The outsourcing of one or more services depends on the quality of the service and the resulting performance. In order to determine these two elements, it is essential to have in-house expertise, and if this is not the case, you must hire a consultant. The latter will therefore be responsible for creating a standard operating procedure (SOP) by auditing and observing the procedures of your own staff. In case of failure, he/she can also help you to recruit an external profile in order to remedy the situation.

A documented outsourcing process

By choosing outsourcing, your goal is to save time and to allow your internal team members to focus more on higher priority tasks. How are you going to determine the quality of a provider’s work to achieve this? The best way to do this is to “test” potential niche companies by providing them with a clearly written and documented process for carrying out the tasks that interest you. By documenting this process as much as possible, you will be able to maintain quality control and consistency between your expectations and the results delivered with minimal revision. In addition, as a partner, the right provider must be able to provide you with the right pieces of advice that will improve your processes.

Time: an irreplaceable and essential ally

Once you have selected the tasks that you want to outsource, determine the time and cost necessary to carry them out internally. It is then that you will have to start gradually integrating external sources into the performance of these same tasks. This will allow you to compare the productivity of the two parts (internal and external) in relation to the cost.

With these metrics on hand, give the service provider more and more priority by investing in tasks that have to abide by time and budget constraints, while reducing those that are close to your normal operating margins.

Quality, reliability, communication and accountability?

A good service provider must be able to guarantee you four characteristics: the quality of his teams and equipment, his reliability, his sense of communication and his assumption of responsibility. In clearer terms, you can outsource when you are certain that the chosen company:

  • Provides quality work,
  • Has always that are always available,
  • Ha supervisors who can communicate clearly and effectively and
  • Is always willing to take on extra work.

Always outsource tasks without added value for your business

Last but not least, it is important for your business development to outsource only non-core tasks, which take too many resources in-house. These tasks must prevent your teams from focusing on the core business of your company. If you find out that a task is being handled in-house without affecting the normal day-to-day operations, review the points in your outsourcing project.

By taking care to weigh and scrutinise every task that you want to outsource, you will be able to more easily determine the difficulties and growth points of your business.

Small and medium enterprises: reasons to outsource some services

The outsourcing of services, which consists of the transfer of an autonomous activity to a specialized service provider, is addressed to all types of enterprises, both small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and, naturally, to large enterprises. By entrusting some of the least profitable and most time-consuming services to an external service provider, these companies accumulate the good points: savings in terms of time and flexibility, increased competitiveness and productivity, to name but a few. According to an annual study carried out by the EY firm for the SP2C, the French customer relationship outsourcing market grew an additional 4% between 2016 and 2017, thus weighing € 2.46 billion. Moreover, in 2015, 82% of French companies subcontracted one or more services (payroll, IT, archiving, catering, security, cleaning, etc.) to a specialized company. To this end, they have prepared their outsourcing by identifying and analysing several factors.

Defining your business’ needs

It is good to note that certain satellite activities, although essential for the proper functioning of such an organization, can obstruct its commercial evolution. So the right questions need to be asked: What are your company’s resources, results and core business? What activities are demanding in terms of staff and time, too far from the core business and are not profitable?

These answers are essential and will help you understand how your business works. By pointing them out clearly and analysing them, you will be able, for example, through a requirements specification, to target tasks that needlessly drain your organization’s time, energy and budget.

By proceeding methodically during this step, you will be able to precisely communicate your expectations and the ideal operating mode to the outsourcing company. For example, if you are a micro-enterprise (MSE), a small and medium enterprise (SME), this will allow you to effectively outsource your billings, pay service, telephone reception, appointment scheduling, etc.

Choosing an outsourcing company

As companies, you and your provider need to trust each other and share a transparent relationship from the start. To achieve this:

  • The client company must be able to determine and formulate its requirements in terms of quality of work,
  • The specialist provider must be able to clearly say whether he will be able to respond to and commit to these requirements

As you will have understood, outsourcing is not only a matter of price, but a set of factors that must be discussed before signing any contract.

To be sure about making the right choice, do not hesitate also to approach the clients of the selected provider.

Adapting your business operations to outsourcing

Of course, outsourcing will change the landscape and habits of your organization, so you will have to make sure that every employee adapts and finds his place in such a context. To this end, communication will have to be secure, fluid, transparent and regular, notably by telephone, but also through an online communication or production tool.

Make full use of the saved time

Yes, outsourcing allows you to save money without affecting quality, but it is important to remember that your company will also save time. How will your company make use of this time now that the most time-consuming and less profitable services have been outsourced?

Indeed, to make the most of it financially and commercially, you will be able to use the time gained for your development: employee training, production, communication, marketing, etc.

The 3 main stages of outsourcing

Many companies have successfully outsourced by patiently preparing and applying this step. To this end, they have strictly adhered to the three main phases of the process:

  • Pre-outsourcing,
  • Outsourcing and staff,
  • Post-outsourcing.

Pre-outsourcing: an unavoidable step, the duration of which will depend on the maturity of the services dedicated to outsourcing. It is during this phase that the company will have to take stock of its needs and objectives, the scope and the method of outsourcing (home providers, offshore ones, mutualized ones, etc.). It will also need to take stock of the relevance of its existing procedures, as well as the expertise of the people currently in charge of these services. Last but not least, the company will have to consider and adopt the customer’s point of view!

Outsourcing: humanly, the outsourcing of certain services is not a trivial matter, so it is essential to prepare and support your employees during this transition. Communications, reclassification, motivation, membership, loyalty, these elements also contribute to the success of outsourcing, since it is about the association of its employees.

Post-outsourcing: now that some of the company’s services have been outsourced, it is essential to closely follow this new collaboration, though external, to ensure that the quality is being respected. For example, the service provider should be asked to report regularly on the objectives achieved, but also on any difficulties encountered. Over time, you can decide whether outsourcing is a solution that is relevant to your needs.

In any case, according to the figures published by the CEGOS observatory in September 2017, companies that have chosen to outsource some of their services have achieved 33% of savings on their operating costs. To achieve this in turn, consider outsourcing as a decisive step, if your company is determined to go through with it, but also as a retractable one.

In the meantime, the benefits in terms of productivity, but also in terms of human resources, must be given priority so that the process goes smoothly. Outsourcing is not an insignificant process, because it requires the intervention of several actors in transparency, good communication (through tools such as Skype, Slack, Google Drive, Trello, etc.), but above all, a solid and lasting trust between your organization and your provider.

To take stock of the possibilities, it is necessary to approach a company specialized in outsourcing which will be able to answer all your questions clearly.

Preparing for outsourcing

The outsourcing of services, which consists of the transfer of an autonomous activity to a specialized service provider, is addressed to all types of enterprises, both small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and, naturally, to large enterprises. By entrusting some of the least profitable and most time-consuming services to an external service provider, these companies accumulate the good points: savings in terms of time and flexibility, increased competitiveness and productivity, to name but a few.

According to an annual study carried out by the EY firm for the SP2C, the French customer relationship outsourcing market grew an additional 4% between 2016 and 2017, thus weighing € 2.46 billion. Moreover, in 2015, 82% of French companies subcontracted one or more services (payroll, IT, archiving, catering, security, cleaning, etc.) to a specialized company. To this end, they have prepared their outsourcing by identifying and analysing several factors.

Defining your business’ needs

It is good to note that certain satellite activities, although essential for the proper functioning of such an organization, can obstruct its commercial evolution. So the right questions need to be asked: What are your company’s resources, results and core business? What activities are demanding in terms of staff and time, too far from the core business and are not profitable?

These answers are essential and will help you understand how your business works. By pointing them out clearly and analysing them, you will be able, for example, through a requirements specification, to target tasks that needlessly drain your organization’s time, energy and budget.

By proceeding methodically during this step, you will be able to precisely communicate your expectations and the ideal operating mode to the outsourcing company. For example, if you are a micro-enterprise (MSE), a small and medium enterprise (SME), this will allow you to effectively outsource your billings, pay service, telephone reception, appointment scheduling, etc.

Choosing an outsourcing company

As companies, you and your provider need to trust each other and share a transparent relationship from the start. To achieve this:

  • The client company must be able to determine and formulate its requirements in terms of quality of work,
  • The specialist provider must be able to clearly say whether he will be able to respond to and commit to these requirements

As you will have understood, outsourcing is not only a matter of price, but a set of factors that must be discussed before signing any contract.

To be sure about making the right choice, do not hesitate also to approach the clients of the selected provider.

Adapting your business operations to outsourcing

Of course, outsourcing will change the landscape and habits of your organization, so you will have to make sure that every employee adapts and finds his place in such a context. To this end, communication will have to be secure, fluid, transparent and regular, notably by telephone, but also through an online communication or production tool.

Make full use of the saved time

Yes, outsourcing allows you to save money without affecting quality, but it is important to remember that your company will also save time. How will your company make use of this time now that the most time-consuming and less profitable services have been outsourced?

Indeed, to make the most of it financially and commercially, you will be able to use the time gained for your development: employee training, production, communication, marketing, etc.

The 3 main stages of outsourcing

Many companies have successfully outsourced by patiently preparing and applying this step. To this end, they have strictly adhered to the three main phases of the process:

  • Pre-outsourcing,
  • Outsourcing and staff,
  • Post-outsourcing.

Pre-outsourcing: an unavoidable step, the duration of which will depend on the maturity of the services dedicated to outsourcing. It is during this phase that the company will have to take stock of its needs and objectives, the scope and the method of outsourcing (home providers, offshore ones, mutualized ones, etc.). It will also need to take stock of the relevance of its existing procedures, as well as the expertise of the people currently in charge of these services. Last but not least, the company will have to consider and adopt the customer’s point of view!

Outsourcing: humanly, the outsourcing of certain services is not a trivial matter, so it is essential to prepare and support your employees during this transition. Communications, reclassification, motivation, membership, loyalty, these elements also contribute to the success of outsourcing, since it is about the association of its employees.

Post-outsourcing: now that some of the company’s services have been outsourced, it is essential to closely follow this new collaboration, though external, to ensure that the quality is being respected. For example, the service provider should be asked to report regularly on the objectives achieved, but also on any difficulties encountered. Over time, you can decide whether outsourcing is a solution that is relevant to your needs.

In any case, according to the figures published by the CEGOS observatory in September 2017, companies that have chosen to outsource some of their services have achieved 33% of savings on their operating costs. To achieve this in turn, consider outsourcing as a decisive step, if your company is determined to go through with it, but also as a retractable one.

In the meantime, the benefits in terms of productivity, but also in terms of human resources, must be given priority so that the process goes smoothly. Outsourcing is not an insignificant process, because it requires the intervention of several actors in transparency, good communication (through tools such as Skype, Slack, Google Drive, Trello, etc.), but above all, a solid and lasting trust between your organization and your provider.

To take stock of the possibilities, it is necessary to approach a company specialized in outsourcing which will be able to answer all your questions clearly.