Outsourcing is a popular trend right now. Once limited to big brands and corporations, outsourcing has now become a strategic tool even for small and medium-sized businesses, particularly startups.
However, the outsourcing experience varies from one business to another. For example, some businesses outsource specific tasks such as payroll or customer service, while other businesses outsource a whole department.
But whatever type of outsourcing model you implement, one thing is true: outsourcing needs to be planned well to make the most of it and prevent costly mistakes. Here’s a list of some of outsourcing errors business owners need to be aware of and stay away from:
Mistake 1. Giving Too Many Responsibilities
In a cost minimizing approach to business, the first thing that comes to their minds is giving all the marketing responsibilities to one person or a small team within the company.
However, you should think again. Marketing is considered to be one of the key parts in any business and if you want to be successful. So, when outsourcing, make sure to not overwhelm a single person with all the marketing responsibilities.
Mistake 2. Outsourcing The Wrong Things
Another big mistake is intructing the marketing company to do the wrong marketing activities. If you hire someone outside of the office, you should give them the things they can do best.
In general, creating a company brand and marketing goals should be done inside your office, so make sure you discuss your culture code, style and requirements with the outsourced marketing partners before kicking off the project!
Mistake 3. Having Unrealistic ROI Expectations
When you entrust the marketing of your company, you should set some realistic expectations. One of the biggest mistakes of many companies is that they think outsourcing all their problems will solve them at once and there will be no need for them to participate in marketing decisions, activities and so on.
Keep in mind that brand awareness, a firm customer base and long-term faithful relationship with customers takes time. So, make sure to set attainable expectations.
Mistake 4. Not Having Basic Knowledge
Imagine that you outsourced social media marketing, and you don’t have a clue how marketing works. If you don’t know anything about that field, how you are going to evaluate their work?
So, before hiring someone and putting everything on him/her, try to gain basic knowledge about the area that you outsource, in order to be able to control it and improve it. You can also learn from the marketing company itself, by asking for continuous feedback and reports of their works and results.
Mistake 5. Not Evaluating
Even if you hired the best marketing agency to do the work for you, you must regularly evaluate their work. Keep track of the work done, and understand what impact it had on your business. Did your sales grow or did you lose some of your customers? So, you should evaluate the results from time to time in order make correct steps.
Mistake 6. Hiring The Wrong People
One of the biggest mistakes that many companies do is hiring the wrong people, just because they demand low compensation. Keep in your mind, that those people will ruin your business and won’t bring good results. So, in order to hire someone really special and smart, make sure to do a lot of research and ask for advice, before outsourcing.
Mistake 7. Hiring Someone Who Has No Potential To Grow
It is really a big mistake, if you think that the person’s knowledge and growth outside your company is not your business. If you want your business to grow, every part of it should grow as well. So, try to hire someone, who has the potential and desire to grow in his/her professional life.
Mistake 8. Not Giving Feedback
Another mistake is not giving feedback to outsourcers. It really does not matter how small is the work, you should give feedback to everything, in order to get high results. And by saying feedback, I mean both positive and negative ones. Negative feedback will help them understand what should be improved and positive feedback will encourage and motivate them.
Mistake 9. Not Setting Budget
Before outsourcing, you should do some research and understand how much you should pay to the outsourcers. This will help you set a budget and avoid any people, who charge too high. In addition, besides their salaries, you should have some additional money, in order to be prepared for any case, even if they increase their rate.
Mistake 10. Not Communicating
When you hire someone, you should always be in touch with him/her, in order to understand what they are doing. In addition, you should have some strict policies and rules, which must be applied to them as well. This will help you avoid any unpleasant situations and will make the outsourcer understand what is expected from him/her.
Outsourcing should not be considered as an easy way to get rid of time-consuming and repetitive work. Instead, it should be seen as an important tool for building an efficient, lean, and competitive business, optimized to give you more time for strategic focus.