There comes a time in every small business owner’s life when they must begin to seek help in running their business. As your business grows and you become busier and busier, you’re going to need to hire other people to help you. But should you outsource or hire permanent employees? Here’s a list of the pros and cons of outsourcing and in-house. We also offer our recommendations for what services you should outsource and keep in-house, from payroll solutions to social media marketing.
One of the great benefits that outsourcing gives you is that you can save more money. Hiring your employees, looking after them, and providing them with benefits is a costly undertaking. In some cases and for specific roles, hiring in-house can be more trouble than it’s worth.
Outsourcing also allows you access to a larger and more diverse pool of talent. Hiring in-house often limits you to a certain area, so there’s a possibility of having to compromise. Because outsourcing allows you to tap into talent from all around the world, you’ll be more likely to find an excellent fit for the job.
But the distance that is often a given when outsourcing is where its drawbacks originate. For one thing, working with outsourced talent gives a greater likelihood of misunderstanding. Of course, you can still enjoy all the benefits of an outsourced worker, but you’ll have to work harder to communicate with them – and this can be made even more complicated when they live in a different time zone.
Make your expectations clear and perform due diligence. This is an essential step to take, especially when outsourcing. Fail to communicate properly, and you risk them misunderstanding the essence of your company and your expectations of their output and performance.
Some services can be more beneficial for you to keep in-house. One of the advantages of hiring your own employees is that they’ll have a much clearer understanding of your company and its products and services from the get-go. And this isn’t just because you’ll probably have these people on-site. Even if the pandemic might keep you from having on-site workers – at least, to a certain degree – you can be more assured of your employees’ understanding of your company and what it offers.
Unless they’re part-time workers, you can also be assured that they’ll be focused on tasks to do with the company. Outsourcing freelancers or contractors can be tricky because chances are, they work for many other clients. You’ll have to make sure that their other work won’t interfere with the work that they do for you.
Hiring in-house staff also allows you to grow your company and build a future for it. Permanent employees will secure good and lasting working relationships with clients because there will be less turnover. This will benefit your company in the long-term. Your clients and customers will have more confidence in what you have to offer because of the relationships you build with them.
Here’s our list of three services to outsource and three to have in-house.
Hire an accountant or use accounting software to keep track of your finances. This will take a load off your shoulders and save you money.
In-house: Customer service
Some things are just better done by one of your own, and this is one of them. In-house customer support will have a better understanding of your products and services. Thus, they’ll be better equipped to address questions and concerns. These concerns and feedback will be easier to compile and keep track of, so you can address more quickly and efficiently.
Outsource: Cleaning services
A small business is unlikely to need a cleaning staff to be on-site for the entire working day. But if you do decide to have an in-house cleaning service, you can benefit from hiring an office helper, because their job descriptions tend to be more varied.
In-house: Social media marketing
Small businesses tend to be very reliant on social media marketing because it’s cheaper than other alternatives. A social media marketing team or executive would likely be a worthy investment.
Hiring in-house couriers for a small business would be impractical. It’s best to leave shipping to a company that specializes in it. An outsourced courier will also be able to recommend the best way to package your deliverables.
In-house: Content creation
If your company needs a lot of content, it can be more expensive to outsource content creation than to have it in-house. Remember that with outsourcing, you pay for only what you need.
As your small business grows, you’ll have to hire people to help you. Which jobs you’re going to outsource and which you’re going to hire a permanent team for are up to you and the needs of your company. While in-house lets you build lasting relationships with your consumers, it’s more expensive. And while outsourcing gives you access to more applicants, it can make communication difficult. It will help you greatly to use these pros and cons to guide your decisions.