Have you ever felt like you have too much work to handle? Do you often find yourself going through to-do lists and wondering how to find time to complete all the tasks? If that sounds like your business, you may benefit from outsourcing some of your work. Outsourcing is when you pay somebody else to do work for you and pay them less than you are receiving. It is different from hiring somebody as your employee, since there is unlikely to be a contract and the necessary registration required between employers and their staff.

Outsourcing Guide

What can I outsource?

Outsourcing is very common in the world of internet marketing and website management. Almost anything in this field can be outsourced, including article writing, social media management and website design. Data entry tasks, computer programming and customer support services are very often outsourced, particularly by larger internet businesses.

Many busy internet marketers choose to outsource work to one or more virtual or general assistants. These are usually people who can take on a wide range of tasks for you, saving you time and money.

However, outsourcing takes place outside of the internet world too. Manufacturing, for example, is one of the most commonly outsourced tasks worldwide. Businesses receive orders from their clients, and then pass on the job to a cheaper company in order to maximise their profits.

Businesses often find a lot of time taken up with appointment scheduling and calendar management, whereas these are both jobs which can be easily outsourced. Likewise, reminder services, travel arrangements and training programs for either you or your clients can also be organised by somebody else.

Why should I outsource?

By outsourcing work to other people, you can take on much more than you would be able to manage single-handedly. Although this will mean you have more expenses to pay, it also means that you will receive more money.

For example, if you receive a task which your client pays £100 for, you can outsource this to someone who will complete it for just £50. This means that you will make £50 from the job without actually doing the work.

One of the main reasons why entrepreneurs outsource work is because they need more time for other things. Article writers, for example, would have little time to advertise and build their businesses if they spent 8-10 hours a day completing orders. Through outsourcing, they are able to free up several hours per day which can then be used to respond to emails, promote their business or provide customer support.

Outsourcing also allows you to offer much more to your clients. You may not be able to design websites yourself, but you can outsource any orders which you receive for web design. Jobs that you find tedious or boring can also be outsourced to somebody else, so your clients can still order from you and receive the work. In some circumstances, you may not personally possess the required knowledge for the work which is being requested. If you don’t know much about medical science but one of your clients requires a batch of articles on this subject, it’s often better to accept the order and outsource it rather than reject the work. This will help to ensure that your clients remain loyal to you, since they will feel confident that you can deliver the work that they need.

Are there any disadvantages of outsourcing?

Although outsourcing can be very beneficial, there are still some negatives which are worth considering before you start assigning tasks to other parties.

One of the problems with outsourcing is that the work you receive might not be up to the standard you require. You may find yourself rejecting a lot of work if it’s not suitable to pass on to your clients, but in many cases, you will still need to pay for the work which has been done. This could cause delays in getting the orders to your own clients, and you may even need to complete the work yourself if there is a deadline approaching.

You may also take on work before finding a suitable person to outsource it to. This could result in telling the client that you cannot complete the work for them, or you may find that it’s very stressful trying to find somebody to do the job before the deadline.

If you require good quality and a fast turnaround, you may not be able to get cheap prices. This will cause you to earn less money than you might have expected, and as you will still have to correspond with your client, check through the work you have been sent and then follow up with your client, this will take time out of your schedule. Many people find that it isn’t very cost-effective to outsource work, since they cannot find labour cheap enough to outweigh the problems associated with it.

Communication can be another big issue depending where in the world you are outsourcing to. If you are outsourcing work to a freelancer in India they might struggle to understand the full specification of the work and you might struggle to get what you want to be done across to them, Language will always be a barrier.

Where can I find people to outsource my work to?

There are many different places to outsource your work. Internet marketing forums, for example, are small internet communities full of people looking to take on extra tasks.

Websites such as Fiverr and Freelancer have several categories to choose from when you are searching for somebody to outsource work to. These popular websites are used by amateurs and experts from all around the world, so you can find anything you need for your business. With helpful reviews from previous customers, it’s easy to get what you’re looking for.

Websites such as Gumtree and Craigslist have a section for those looking for work, so it may be worth posting an ad on there. If you are hoping to outsource in the world of internet work, it may not be the most effective method of advertising, but if you can post an ad for free or very little, it’s worth trying.

There are pros and cons to outsourcing, but if you find the right people, you could be on your way to making more profit, freeing up your personal time and building a great business.