Most of the time, when we think of outsourcing, we think of American held companies who pay cheaper wages in foreign lands, to do the same work as would be done in the US at a higher price. Offshore Outsourcing has gained a bad reputation. Outsourcing can become a company’s best friend or Achilles heel.
What are some things that make it successful? Here is a “Do” list…
- Outsource jobs that don’t require a high level of management. Popular outsourced jobs are computer professionals such as IT, medical professionals, tax preparers and writers. These jobs don’t require a high level of management input and progress can be monitored quite efficiently through email, cost estimation software, and time tracking software.
- Outsource highly specialized jobs. Outsourcing lets organizations pay for only the services they need, when they need them and it allows them to hire “experts” in that specific field. Company’s end up saving money on training and operating costs.
- Outsource customer support and customer service training. Most companies do not have time not the skills to deal with customer service and training your entire staff to create a service culture. Hiring a company specifically geared towards this can be invaluable. Most firms do not have the ability to create leading edge customer programs that work.
Outsourcing can be a very powerful tool. It can help increase revenue, reduce stress, and manage time more efficiently. Done correctly it can save a company thousands if not millions a year.
Here are some pitfalls to avoid:
- DO NOT outsource to foreign countries like India. According to John Tschohl, a leading customer service strategist, “a company who outsources to India is on a suicide watch”. The caste system, customs, dialect, and accent become an obstacle to achieving success. Many times, these people read from computer screens and become robots. They are taught to say no and cannot make “real” decisions that make a difference.
- Give specific and clear guidelines to the person or company who will be handling the management. Make sure the managerial methodology fits within the new structure. Full time staff will be managed differently than an outsourced company.
John Tschohl, an international service strategist and speaker, is founder and president of the Service Quality Institute in Minneapolis,Minnesota. Described by Time and Entrepreneur, and USA Today magazines as a customer service guru, he has written several books on customer service. The Service Quality Institute (http://www.customer-service.com) has developed more than 26 customer service training programs that have been distributed and presented throughout the world. John’s bi-monthly strategic newsletter is available online at no charge. He can also be reached on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.