Outsourcing is the process of obtaining goods and services from a foreign supplier. It has become significantly popular over the last decade as companies grow and their needs start to get specific. However, outsourcing can seem like a pretty intimidating topic if you’ve never tried it, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming or scary.
Let’s take a look at some tips that can help you to get started with outsourcing.
1. Decide Which Tasks To Outsource
It is important to decide which tasks to outsource. You will want to outsource work that doesn’t need your personal touch, things that don’t fit with your strengths, and things that can be done inexpensively. Bloggers and marketers have a lot of possibilities for outsourcing, and it really comes down to finding the best options for your specific situation.
Here is some stuff that is easy to outsource:
- graphic design,
- web design & development,
- blog content creation,
- product creation,
- customer service,
- social media marketing,
- email marketing,
- search engine optimization,
- PPC marketing, and more.
2. Choose A Platform
Choose one website that you will use to manage the projects that you outsource. There are a number of sites that hire freelancers, including Upwork, Freelancer.com, People Per Hour, and many others.
On the other hand, If you’re using a lot of different sites it can make things more difficult to manage. However, if you’re only using one site it’s easy to manage all of your projects from one place. Moreover, certain tasks lend themselves quite well to flat-rate style service providers.
3. Start Small
It is possible to outsource everything from small one-time projects to huge on-going projects. Start small and get comfortable with the process of outsourcing before attempting very large projects. You could easily start by simply hiring someone to write a blog post or a few posts.
By starting small you reduce your commitment and exposure, in case it doesn’t go as well as expected.
4. Be As Descriptive As Possible
Do you know most sites like Elance, oDesk, and Freelancer.com work in a fairly similar way? Usually, you’ll start by creating a description of your project, and then freelancers can provide you with a bid or a quote if they would like to be hired for the project. The project description is a vital part of the outsourcing process. You must be descriptive and clear so that freelancers will know if it’s a project that would be a good fit for them, and so they can provide an accurate quote.
5. Provide Detailed Communication Throughout The Process
Once you’ve hired a freelancer your work is not done. You’ll need to provide clear and detailed instructions about the work that you want them to do and how you want it to be provided or delivered. You may also need to set up some milestones and deadlines, especially for larger projects.
You’ll also need to help the freelancer by providing clear feedback to their work throughout the project. If you need changes to be made, be as specific as possible.
6. Look For On-going Opportunities
The purpose of outsourcing is to free up your own time and to get things done in a cost-effective manner. Finding and hiring the right freelancer can take some time. If you’re doing this on a constant basis you’re probably not making the best use of your time. In an ideal situation, you’ll be able to work with the same freelancers on an on-going basis.
When you find someone that does good quality work, that communicates effectively with you, and that is affordable, it’s a more efficient use of your time to work with this person on an on-going basis rather than posting new projects and reviewing lots of bids for each project.
Once you have a quality freelancer, or perhaps a few freelancers, that you are working with it can save a great deal of your time to pass off work to this person on a regular basis.
At UpWork you can choose to post your projects publicly or privately. Private projects can only be viewed by freelancers that you invite.
This way you get one bid from the person that you want to hire and don’t have to sort through a lot of bids and browse several different portfolios.
7. Evaluate Your Approach Periodically
If you’re working with freelancers on an on-going basis it’s a good idea to evaluate your process and your approach every now and then to make sure that it is still working well for you.
For example, if you’re outsourcing content creation for your blog, periodically you should evaluate the stats and analytics to make sure that the content is having an impact. You can also evaluate how much you are spending on outsourced projects and compare that investment to what you are generating in return.
If your ROI is poor, you can try a different approach (perhaps using other freelancers) or consider stopping the outsourced project altogether.
Wrapping It Up
Outsourcing is a great way to free up your time so you can focus more on what matters – growing your business.
Consider developing a process for each task you outsource and be sure to incorporate the advice you’ve learned from this post.
Sitelar is a one-stop Digital Agency for everything your business needs to succeed and grow in the digital landscape. We offer outsourcing and digital services ranging from web design to customer service. Get in touch with us today to know more about how we can accelerate your business growth.