While outsourcing is a fantastic, and often cost effective, way to get a lot accomplished, it doesn’t always make sense. Outsourcing can bust your budget if you’re not careful. Additionally, depending on the tasks you’re outsourcing and who you’re contracting to, you may be putting yourself at risk. There’s a risk that the work won’t be accomplished effectively and there may be some security risks. If you feel like you’ve gotten carried away or you’re in over your head, it’s time to rein in outsourcing chaos.
Identifying Your Priorities
The first step is to make a list of all of the activities and tasks you’re outsourcing. Once you have that list then put a star next to those activities that are absolute priorities. For example, you may need a technical website and application developer on your list because you just don’t have the knowledge base to handle those tasks. However, you may be able to edit and post your own blog posts and can set those tasks as low priority tasks. Once you’ve prioritized it may then become easy to begin making changes.
If you have outsourced an abundance of tasks you may spend the majority of your time simply trying to keep everything organized. Consider investing in a project management system. These systems allow you to communicate with contractors, upload files, and even set milestones and tasks with email notifications. You can then see all of your projects at once and you have a single place to communicate with everyone.
Finally, if your budget is the reason your outsourcing feels out of control there are a variety of approaches you can take to rein it in. The first potential solution is to look at your priorities and start cutting back. However, you can also look at those priorities and begin to make slight changes that save money. For example, if you have a ghost writer create a monthly report, you might ask them to outline the report for you and you’ll write it. Or you might switch to a report every other month. You may also be able to shift your budget a bit to help you cover your outsourcing needs.
Outsourcing is most certainly a smart business decision however each project requires answering key questions. For example, does it make financial sense to outsource this project and is this project a priority? If you’ve gotten a bit carried away with your outsourcing it’s okay. Realign your priorities and goals and take control over the situation.