18 Commonly Outsourced Jobs You Might Need
Running a small business can be tough. You need to be able to do the same things that a big firm does, but with far fewer resources.
You will still need to deliver your products and services. This means that you would also want to innovate and develop your brand in a way that is meaningful and productive. You’ll need to hire, train, manage, and pay your team.
You’ll need to worry about all of the aspects of managing and maintaining the property that you work from/with, as well as maintain the benefits of an IT system to administer all of this.
As the leader of the business, you will probably very quickly become a chief cook and pot washer.
You will do almost everything at first.
Hiring large teams to do everything is expensive, and if you are not seeing enough money coming in, then you will not be able to bring in the bodies.
This means that all of the hard work will be split between you and a very small team. However, you need to keep your hands free from tasking so that you can take your business to the next level.
If you have to worry about every single little aspect of your business, then you will not be able to develop your products and services. Hence, without some outsourced jobs to help you, you will be stuck in a catch-22 situation.
Why Not Outsource?
Outsourcing means getting other companies to do some of your work for you. There may be support areas within your company that can be managed elsewhere, freeing up resources within your company.
The trend now among the big business is outsourcing some services. To save money and/or time on projects, outsourcing has been a tool for big businesses. So what are some of the most commonly outsourced services?
Before I go into the list of the services, let me intimate you with outsourcing itself. Outsourcing involves delegating, authorizing, and subcontracting parts of business services to other businesses, professionals, and experts that specialize in that field.
In short, outsourcing simply involves subcontracting out a part of the business’ project to a third party. You can outsource pretty much any service in this day and age. But the services you outsource and the ones you keep in-house should depend on your business needs per time.
So while considering this, you should weigh the pros of outsourcing that particular service. Justify your decision by answering these questions: Will it reduce cost? Will it increase profit? Will it save time? If the answers to these are yeses, then you are good to go.
Without further ado, let’s dive right into some commonly outsourced services.
You may need the services of a copywriter or ghostwriter to churn out quality articles for your website, blog or even help you to write your first book.
This helps to keep your website active, updated and increases the chances that search engines will direct potential customers to you due to your consistency.
Outsourcing these kinds of writing tasks gives you an extraordinary quality that can only be gotten from experts in that area. This will also help you to worry about other tasks of the company and maintain focus on your set goals and objectives.
2. Lead generation
For many businesses, sales calls are usually a matter of number. An increased number of calls will result in more leads and in the long run, more sales.
One issue faced by most businesses especially small and medium enterprises is the time and manpower to commit to this task.
To solve this problem, businesses outsource their lead generation. Closing the deals may be done in-house by the internal sales department once the outreach has been carried out successfully.
3. Human Resources
If you run a small company, you might have been ignoring the full legal issues that surround your human resources practices. If you are doing this, then you are putting yourself at risk.
You will be exposing yourself and your employees to risks. Having a dedicated HR specialist is costly, and in the case of a small business, unnecessary. However, there will be times when you need that type of support and having a company to handle all of your HR concerns is vital.
Many financial institutions, manufacturing companies, transport and logistics firms and even the government outsource to an external agent. What is the reason for doing this? It’s because humans are the most onerous to manage. Hence, to reduce the burden, most businesses now outsource (from employee recruitment even up to retirement) to an external agency.
The HR agency takes care of all the employees’ benefits with reference to the current governing laws and employment standards. The agencies are more proficient at screening suitable applicants and are well versed in human behaviour. So, you will not benefit from their experience but also relieve yourself of stress from your employees.
4. Tax preparation and filing
When talking about time-consuming tasks, tax preparation is one. Not because of the size but mostly because of the specific skills needed to get it right. But guess what, it need not be a great burden anymore.
It gets very easy when you outsource it to financial firms. The cost is standardized in most countries so you could effortlessly outsource Value Added Tax (VAT), Service Tax, and TDS returns. As a bonus, online accounting software can help generate returns if you give them the required access to your records.
5. Content writing
Writing blogs, articles, or other content either for online or offline publication needs a lot of creativity. Just like creative works, outsourcing your written content to professional hands is very effective than using your in-house team who may not be used to it.
Newspapers, news websites, and blogs frequently outsource their content writing.
6. Creative works
Many business owners, especially startups and small enterprises, require designs of brochures, magazines, invitation cards, business cards, and company profiles at some point in the business. Even though some can actually handle this task themselves, many cannot do it professionally.
Oftentimes, You only consider the cost of the design, however, the skills and expertise of a professional will guarantee a better result. Unless you are an artist yourself or a graphics designer, you should leave your designs and creative works to the experts.
Of course, you can give suggestions and recommendations while outsourcing your logo, cards, letterhead, branded items, banners and other advertising creations to experts. Websites like Freelancer, Upwork, FlexJobs, RemoteJobs, and Fiverr have lots of freelance designers to help you create unique and professional artwork at a very good price.
You can also look at getting your payroll managed in a similar fashion. While payroll may not be a very time-consuming job on the whole for you, if your business is big, mopping up various financial problems can be stressful, and mistakes can be made.
Having a dedicated payroll support service will help you ensure that your staff is paid accurately and in a timely fashion.
8. Legal services
For the legal tasks, you have to be very careful about how you outsource and who you outsource to. When it comes to legal affairs, it is true that “no one can defend you like yourself”, so no legal team can defend your company like the in-house team.
Nonetheless, some legal duties are well handled by outsourcing to law firms. Example of services you can outsource is analysis, review, and drafting of legal documents, litigation support, and legal documentation.
For big businesses, having an in-house legal squad isn’t a problem but for smaller businesses, the cost may be unbearable. As a small business, you get the advantage of hiring a good legal practitioner without bearing the full cost of the training.
As a large business, you also gain by outsourcing the tedious legal task as you allow your legal team to focus on other legal businesses.
9. Customer service
Customer care or support is usually done uniquely by outsourcing. There are many advantages to having a customer-centric culture in your business. This can be achieved with the skills and proficiency of a brilliant salesperson who can be well utilized to close deals and handle clients.
Another pro is that outsourced customer service is more effectively managed than in-house and it is considerably cheaper to do so. Oftentimes, the businesses in the same niche outsource to the same company for customer support thereby expanding their field.
An example is CarlCare supporting Tecno, Infinix, and a few other mobile technology companies.
10. Healthcare services
Apart from the habitual sensitivity of medical information, you have nothing to hold you back from outsourcing your healthcare services. As with all other outsourcing, only medical teams with a proven and reliable track record must be used.
You can handle the small medical services like first aid in-house but as the demand for a well-sophisticated medical need arises, it is certainly best to completely hand it over to the medical professionals. One of the advantages of outsourcing this is that you get their professional opinion and recommendation on the medical situation.
Another is that the technical know-how of the machines to be used is usually priceless, plus the fact that your business needs not to buy the machine. Services like X-ray, Tele-radiology, medical diagnosis, prescription, transcription, billing, and coding should be outsourced to reputable medical institutions.
11. Payroll preparation
Preparing cheques and vouchers might not be a problem when you are still a small business but it can be an overwhelming task as you grow and the number of employee increase. Why? payroll preparation requires you to keep track of a lot of things for all your employees.
Outsourcing this service means you don’t have to know or keep track of your employees’ tax returns, loan advances, bonuses, joining and exit formalities, paid and unpaid leaves, etc.
These services would be handled by the firm you outsource to giving you time to work smart and not hard. This will also help you to focus on the management of the business.
Apart from saving you time and reducing stress, it also ensures your employees are happy because they get paid without delay.
12. Data entry
Repetitive data entry tasks should be outsourced. Data entry can be a very daunting task. Most times, well-known businesses outsource this to an external team.
Tasks like order processing, indexing, and cataloguing are good to be outsourced but care must be taken not to outsource sensitive data like credit card data.
An advantage of outsourcing data entry is that it is cost-efficient, fast, and accurate and it reduces the chance of monotony and fatigue for your employees.
13. Bookkeeping and accounting
Concise Oxford English dictionary (eleventh edition) defines bookkeeping as “the activity of keeping records of financial affairs” and it replaces “activity” with “action” while defining accounting. As an SME or big business, financial accounting and record-keeping are very important for you.
Not only does it let you know your current financial status, but it’s also the basis on which future projections and plans are to be made. You can’t underestimate the importance of planning.
You could have the options for employing a full-time accountant or a whole accounting team but it is usually more efficient to outsource.
Apart from the time it takes to prepare account records, it is also relatively cheaper to have another firm do your accounting for you. Most accounting firms have websites and allow you to check your records in real-time. This will save you money and the time of your employees.
14. Uninteresting tasks
Life, they say, is not a bed of roses. We as humans have tasks we will rather not perform because we do not enjoy them or we do not have an interest in them. One good thing is “one man’s food is another man’s poison”.
That task that does not seem enjoyable to you might be fun for some other people so why not outsource it to them.
If you have a task you keep avoiding, just know there is someone somewhere who not only knows how to do it but enjoys doing it.
15. Social media management
One of the biggest mistakes some do is not rolling with the trend. Social media has gone past the days of use for just personal communication.
Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Telegram are currently being used by businesses for lead generation and marketing. Some businesses think setting aside an hour a day for social media management is enough to boost their social media presence but I say it is not even enough to maintain their presence not to talk of boosting it.
Social media is being used for campaigns and advertisements nowadays and you need a good team to manage your social media accounts to stay relevant. This requires a substantial amount of time, know-how, dedication, and resources which can best be outsourced because it usually doesn’t end with just getting your contents written and posted.
Sometimes, you have to reply to messages, chat with your followers and monitor the activities on your page. A pool of outsourced professionals will help you achieve this without you breaking a sweat.
16. Event management
Event management has been one of the most outsourced services in history. There are business events you should attend as a business owner. You can also organize yours to be recognized as an authority in your field.
Business events such as conferences, workshops, day outs, parties can be outsourced to an organizing firm. Events, no matter how small, consume a lot of time from preparation, execution, and the necessary tasks after the events.
If you do not outsource your events, it will not only overwhelm you but will force you to include your employees which might have adverse effects on the productivity of your business. Let me tell you some of the troubles you will avoid when you outsource your event management to a reputable firm.
You will enjoy the benefit of the firm’s connection to caterers, technicians (power and sound), interior decorators, sponsors, partners, and other vendors. Save yourself valuable time and money by outsourcing your event management.
17. Skills that you do not have
Obviously, you cannot have all the skills needed for your business to perform optimally. Yes, you started your business because of your skill and passion for the core tasks. However, this is not enough if you want your business to grow.
It is not economically possible to employ every skill you need. Your business could need a skill for now but might not need it in the future. A need to outsource might arise.
You need not learn every skill (you cannot) or skills you only need for a short while. You need not learn web design and web design mistakes to avoid when you can just outsource it. (unless you are into website design business)
18. Manage IT Solutions
One of the most popular areas that a business chooses to outsource is its IT support. Companies like Cyberjaz can eliminate the need for you to be fixing problems as they emerge.
A forward-thinking IT support company can offer you advice and assistance in setting up and maintaining your network infrastructure. You will get a whole wealth of experience that would be very costly for you to bring into your company.
Do you know that it is wise to get as much support as you can for your business? You shouldn’t try to do everything by yourself or with your few team members. This is because your day-to-day activities can get overwhelming. If care is not taken, you might lose focus on the core operations of your business.
In other words, you should get some services done for yourself. While wondering what services you need, these services will help you run your business with ease.
Your thoughts might be – can my small business afford this? As there is a general belief that only big organizations need these support services, not small businesses. That is not true!
In my opinion, small businesses and start-ups need more of these services than big organizations. Why? The former cannot conveniently afford the cost of hiring full-term employees for these services while the latter can.
This list shows the 18 most commonly outsourced services. It outlines their pros and cons and sometimes cautions to take note while outsourcing. Now that you know, it would be profitable for you to consider outsourcing some of your tasks.
I hope this helps you. 😉 Drop your thoughts below.