Outsourcing is a great way for your business to downsize and save money whilst still maintaining a comparable level of output and efficiency day-to-day. You may even be able to expand your services if you’re smart about which areas you choose to outsource – but which areas should you consider? Here are just three to get you started.
1. Inventory management
For some businesses, keeping track of their inventory is a simple but time-consuming task that eats up valuable employee time. For others, it’s akin to fighting a losing battle. Tracking your incoming and outgoing stock, and keeping an accurate tally of your stock on-hand, is critical for the fluid running of any business. There are a number of ways to approach this task in terms of outsourcing, but the most reliable is automation. Using automated inventory management software, like the kind provided by Fishbowl, is perfect because it means your warehouse staff can devote more of their work hours to actually running the business instead of endlessly bean counting. Software like this is compatible with the most popular existing account and inventory management programs like Quickbooks and Xero so there isn’t even a weird transitional phase, you just install it and put it to work.
2. Web design
Web design is one of the most popular areas in business for outsourcing because there are plenty of talented freelance web devs out there looking for work. Depending on the quality of work you’re looking for, you may need to cast a pretty wide net and have a particular budget in mind. It’s important to remember that the best web designers frequently don’t come cheap, but most are open to negotiation. Independent contractors are perfect for jobs like this which often tend to be concentrated over a narrow time-frame – that means you aren’t paying an entire salary to someone you don’t permanently need in a full-time capacity.
Your marketing should be driving sales within the business. A lot of small business owners try to go the DIY route here too and often come up short. There are so many ways to craft an effective modern marketing campaign and there are lots of companies that can accomplish that for you. They’ll provide something that reaches as many demographics as possible – through social media, AdWords, ad spots on high traffic websites and even into old media like TV advertising and newspapers. These are the kinds of companies that can really generate huge traffic and revenue because they know exactly how to manipulate these systems for maximum effect.
These are just a few facets of your business that can be outsourced for greater productivity and results in the longer term. Depending on the job, it can be an excellent cost-saving measure and it might even free up your overworked staff to do the jobs they were originally hired to do. Have you ever outsourced any part of your business? How did it go? Tell your story in the comments below.
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net