There are multiple benefits from outsourcing. If done correctly, you can save limitless hours and resources that you can then reinvest into your business. However, for outsourcing to work, there are critical success factors. Overlooking these factors will not get the most out of your outsourcing experience. Here are five common outsourcing mistakes and how to avoid them:
1 Lack of communication
Initial and ongoing communication is crucial for your relationship to be a success. Sharing of information is essential for clarity of expectation and goals, alignment of interests and ensuring compatibility between both parties. Your offshore workers need to know that you are available should they need to contact you with any questions or direction. A clear process must be in place so you both know when and how to contact and under what circumstances. Business goals can change and evolve. If you do not regularly engage in contact, errors can occur and minor miscommunication can lead to big problems. Contact your offshore team at least once a week for a video catch up and make sure you or their superiors are accessible by email within the agree working hours.
2 Not recognising hard work
If hard work and reaching targets is not recognised, staff will feel underappreciated and may become unmotivated. Happy staff are productive staff so it is important to let them know when they have done a good job. Appreciated and recognised staff will feel more invested in the work and are more likely to want to go the extra mile for you in the future. Include your domestic staff in the recognition of offshore workers to encourage team bonding.
3 Insufficient internal training
Remote staff are an extension of your office so they require training the same as your in-house staff. Training and upskilling is a retention tool and has long term benefits for the company. Speak with your Deployed adviser about what training you can put in place with your offshore team. If you have any in-house training, do it via a live video link or record the session.
4 Improper definition of metrics and performance indicators
Monitoring individual performance as well as team performance is a great way to engage your remote staff and show that you have an interest in their development but the wrong set of metrics or an overdose of KPIs can do more harm than good to an outsourcing relationship. Your Deployed adviser is here to help you set goals and provide ongoing support to ensure that they are achieved. Be clear with your goals and how you will monitor them from the start and check in regularly with your offshore staff and adviser to make sure they are on the right track.
5 Not considering time zones
Working across different time zones does not have to be a negative but if you expect them to be on call during your working day, every day then this will cause problems to the outsourcing relationship. Working across different time zones is beneficial as your company can be in operation for extended hours of the day. During the hiring process, agree on the working hours and on the hours that you will both be available. Organise meetings at a time to suit both parties.
The Philippines recognise a number of national public holidays. Your Deployed adviser can help you with any issues around holidays and working hours.