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Guide to outsourcing your international business

umbrella businessThese days most businesses, including international ones, are looking for ways to cut back on their costs while increasing their efficiency. Companies can easily achieve both goals by outsourcing.

Outsourcing involves delegating some of a company’s duties and functions to specific service providers. These providers could either be individuals or separate organizations. With the recent advancements in technology, businesses can easily hire professionals from anywhere in the world.

This strategy allows an international business to take advantage of high levels of knowledge, experience and expertise from different individuals without exceeding its overhead costs. Outsourcing also enables such businesses to utilize resources that might have been previously unavailable.

All these advantages equip business owners with the tools to compete more effectively on the global stage.

When to outsource

Different companies might decide to outsource at varying times depending on their workload and growth rate. For instance, one international organization may have enough employees to handle all in-house duties but might require outside help when initiating a new project. Other entrepreneurs might opt for outsourcing when additional administrative tasks brought about by expansion become too much to deal with.

Alternatively, business owners can decide to outsource some functions from the onset. Individuals who want to build their own strong team of subcontractors from the beginning often select this route. The chosen freelancers can then grow with the business.

In such situations, it makes sense to hand over some of the company’s duties to external contractors. This frees up valuable time and resources that can be better spent building the business and meeting new goals and targets. Once certain time-consuming tasks are out of the way, entrepreneurs can focus on increasing their company’s productivity.

What duties to outsource

A variety of duties can be outsourced to external subcontractors. The most common outsourced functions include:

  • Tasks that require specialized knowledge or skills. This includes outsourcing duties such as bookkeeping, web design or financial advice to other individuals without employing them on a full time basis. The business owner should also consider contracting an umbrella company to take the strain of administrative tasks and to handle the employees’ payroll. Umbrella companies can help manage the subcontractors and usually deal with their salary, insurance and tax issues.
  • Highly repetitive tasks that may include data entry or keeping inventory. These often mundane or time-consuming duties can be remotely performed without the business owner’s constant supervision.

Finding the right service providers

Entrepreneurs who wish to outsource some of their administrative duties need to spend adequate time searching for the right service providers. These subcontractors should have the requisite expertise and experience to efficiently carry out the duties.

Business owners can get suitable workers to hire from virtual marketplaces, personalized matchmaking consultants or referrals from their networks. Once the appropriate individuals have been selected, it is important for entrepreneurs to give specific instructions on the output they expect.

Furthermore, they should strive to build good rapport with contractors who are an excellent fit in order to avoid constantly hiring new ones.

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