Traditionally, outsourcing specific business projects and functions
has been enjoyed mainly by large organisations, but outsourcing, within
the UK and abroad, works for small businesses and start-ups too
especially with todays increased focus on cutting costs.
concept of outsourcing contracting some of your business functions to
other organisations dates back many years. But in the last five
years, more and more organisations have taken advantage of the
opportunities presented by off shoring and outsourcing. Its now a $60
billion industry growing at 20% per year.
carried out by OutsourceMyProject makes it clear that start-ups and
small businesses are keen to look at outsourcing opportunities and are
seeing the benefits both in terms of cost advantages and in gaining the
skills and experience they need to develop and thrive.
improvements in telecommunications, IT technology (including
broadband) and web-based collaborative tools (such as
OutsourceMyProject.com) have made the possibility of outsourcing much
easier for these businesses and it is used to ensure more effective and
efficient delivery of a range of business functions such as web design,
back office functions, call centre support and admin.
businesses are able to tap into the highly talented skill base
available outside the UK in locations like India and Eastern Europe.
For example, when setting up OutsourceMyProject.com we outsourced to
India ourselves. We are supported by a great team there who provide us
with fantastic web design and IT support at a great price. Its proof
that outsourcing and off shoring works for start ups and SMEs.
low-cost economies such as China, the Philippines, Poland, Romania and
the Ukraine are all fast becoming key countries to outsource to with
South American countries such as Brazil and Argentina being added to
the list most recently.
Cut costs, not quality
clear from our research that many businesses, though keen to explore
outsourcing opportunities, are coming up against a number of both
perceived and real barriers. They are concerned about finding suitable
suppliers and that the level of skills, quality and experience may not
be up to scratch.
Here are my top tips on choosing the right
specialist and how outsourcing can save your business money without
compromising on quality:
Get quotes from different
suppliers and from different locations: Get a good selection of quotes
to choose from and remember cheaper quotes dont always mean poorer
service. Outsourcing overseas, or off shoring, to countries with lower
cost economies can mean you get the same level of service, talent and
quality for a much lower price.
Research suppliers before
committing: Read reviews about the company and find out what previous
customers thought about the service they received.
Plan the project:
Make sure that you have a set time frame to get the job completed and
arrange for payments to be weighted towards the back end of the
project, this way you dont risk paying for something until your
What will work for you: Think about
which functions you could outsource and how much it could save you.
There are several outsourcing options from traditional IT services to
design or translation and even sales and telemarketing.
essential that start-ups and small businesses explore these
outsourcing opportunities in order for them to prosper, especially in
the current climate. It helps to cut costs but also, perhaps more
importantly, can help businesses to gain a competitive edge by bringing
in skilled and experienced professionals.
Loren Holland is co-founder of ,
a website which brings together providers of professional services
with organisations and individuals looking to outsource business
functions or projects.
Businesses which have a project
they wish to outsource can visit the new website and upload details of
the project and invite bids free of charge. Potential providers each
have their own unique online profile, including details of ratings and
feedback for past projects, to help customers decide who to award the
The site also includes web-based tools to
ensure projects run smoothly. These include a payment platform, project
management facility and messaging system to facilitate open, clear and
safe communication between customers and suppliers.
the launch of OutsourceMyProject.com in summer 2010, more than 1,000
suppliers have registered with the site to bid for over 55,000 worth of
projects posted by UK businesses.