After completing the Stop. Keep. Start activity and the delegation process, you may have some leftover tasks that are best completed by someone external to your business.
The process of having a certain job function completed outside your business (instead of internally by an employee) is called outsourcing.
There are 4 main ways to outsource in your business, these are:
You may have a one-off short or long term project to be competed. A logo design is an example of such a project.
There are many websites where you can source freelancers to get this done, including Fiverr, Upwork and 99designs. This is also a very inexpensive option.
There may be entire roles in your business which require outsourcing. This is a long term arrangement which you would usually have with a company.
Outsourcing a role is great option when the role is income producing and not in your expertise.
The role of bookkeeping is a perfect example of an income producing role you may outsource to a professional.
A virtual assistant is someone that undertakes a role of your business from their own home using their own resources (such as their own computer). If you choose to go down this road, ensure you develop a relationship with the person, at least via Skype meetings. Such a connection will build rapport and respect, and the VA will have a greater appreciations of your expectations.
You may wish to train your VA so you have greater control over their performance. It is important to be aware that if your VA works from their own home you cannot 100 percent be sure of their productivity i.e. if you have hired them for 40 hours per week it is possible for them to bend the truth because you are not with them throughout the day.
On the occasion when we have our employees work from home, they log on to Skype when they arrive at work for the day so we know they are there and we are able to communicate with them if need be.
Offshoring involves placing part of your business overseas. You own or rent an office in which an individual or a team works in. This individual or team are part of your local team, they follow your systems and you train them just as you would your team in your own country. This is great to inexpensively complete an entire role of your business.
It is important that you get an office space with adequate internet access, access backup generators etc, to ensure maximum productivity and security.
We have a team in the Philippines who work from a state of the art office. We have meetings with them via Skype on a weekly basis, talk to them via Skype on a daily basis and visit them for training and team building a few times a year.
We have also flown individual employees in important roles (such as those who deal directly with customers, for example employees on our after hours phones) to Australia for training purposes.
So, what could you outsource?