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A guide to outsourcing

One of the best yet challenging aspects of running a small business is when it starts to grow. When it gets to the point where you feel you can no longer manage on your own. Hiring employees is expensive, and often, small businesses do not have it in their budget. Small business outsourcing can be an excellent choice for those who want to take it to the next level without overstretching their budget as they grow.

What is outsourcing?

Hiring external professionals is an excellent way to get the help you need without having the expense and legal obligations of a permanent employee. When you outsource, it means that instead of hiring internal employees, you can hire an individual or team of experts to take care of the everyday functions of running your business. This allows you to focus on what you do best and have a team of experts, too.

Types of services to outsource

When starting your business, you wear many different hats. As the business grows, it becomes difficult to do everything yourself, and you’re more than likely to handle tasks that are outside your area of expertise. Here are some of the daily functions that you could outsource an expert for in the future.

  • Admin

The idea of hiring an external admin has been around for decades with the advent of temporary agencies. Now, you can hire an admin who can do many of the day-to-day tasks, like recordkeeping and data entry online. Hiring a virtual assistant is the new way to have the help you need only a mouse click away.

  • Finance /Accounting

Finance and accounting are other areas that are often one of the first to be outsourced. It is a time-consuming activity, and even if you can do it yourself, there are many reasons why you might want to outsource it instead like tax thresholds, allowances and deduction regulations.

  • Payroll

Payroll is another one that falls into a similar category as finance and accounting. During the initial growth period, you might not have a a lot of staff, so it doesn’t make sense to have a full-time regular payroll employee until you grow and have sufficient staff to make it worthwhile. You can outsource the task and only have to pay for a few hours a week.

  • Marketing

Even in the early stages, hiring a marketing professional is worthwhile because unless you are a marketer yourself, it is a specialised field. You want to make the most of your advertising budget, and this is where the experience of a marketer can be a wise decision. They know how to reach your target audience with the right message to increase revenue.

Benefits of outsourcing 

If you are finding yourself constantly working long days or you think that it might be time to focus your own efforts on the core business, here are the benefits you could have from outsourcing. 

1. Efficiency

Time is a valuable resource. Firms that provide specialised services can often get the job done more quickly and efficiently. When you consider that every hour you send on a task outside the core area of your business is money not spent focusing on growing the business, the costs of hiring a contractor can be much cheaper.

2. Focus on your business

One of the main components of growing your business is that you need to spend as much time as possible focusing on your core products and services. Outsourcing certain tasks gives you the ability to do that without the expense of full-time employees.

3. Skilled professionals

The best part about hiring an external specialist is that you can benefit from industry skills in an area, while still managing to keep costs low. This is the perfect balance for the small business that needs to grow proportionally to its revenues. You can start small and scale up as needed.

4. Business growth

On average, hiring an external contractor saves small businesses 30-50% over hiring a full-time staff. This is money that you can use to put back into growing your business.

Hiring a contractor offers excellent opportunities for small business growth. It allows you to use your resources efficiently and have expert knowledge at your beck and call. If you are thinking about taking your small business to the next level, outsourcing is something you should consider.

When to outsource

One of the biggest questions that small business owners have is when they should begin outsourcing. There comes a time in every business owner’s journey when they simply do not have enough hours in the day to do everything that needs to be done. At the same time, many are reluctant to give up control, handing over certain daily operations to someone else.

Every business is different. You need to weigh the benefits and costs when you are thinking about outsourcing.