Should you outsource or keep it in-house? Whether you’re talking about customer service, accounting, quality assurance, or some other business process, the discussion often focuses on which option provides the most cost-effective solution.
While pricing is an important factor in deciding to outsource, it’s often front and center when it comes to selecting your outsourcing partner. Yet, just like you didn’t consider price alone when you decided to outsource, cost shouldn’t be your only consideration when you select a partner.
Not sure what else you need to consider when you’re pondering different outsourcing providers? Give a few of these factors your attention before you sign on the dotted line.
How long has this potential outsourcing partner been in business? While there are advantages to teaming up with a relative newcomer, you’ll probably want to see a track record before signing a contract.
Why is experience so important? It’s evident the outsourcers know what they’re doing. They’ve been working with clients like you for a while, and they have quite a few success stories. Ask them to tell you some of them!
In contrast, inexperienced companies might make more mistakes. They may not be aware of the ins and outs of your industry, so they might not be able to deliver service up to your standards. Finally, they might be going through their own “growing pains,” which could impact your services.
Great outsourcers should tell you a bit about their clientele. If they specialize in delivering outsourced services to the tech industry, why should your banking firm partner with them?
If they work primarily within one industry, they’ve likely geared their services to reflect the needs of those clients.
Working with a specialized outsourcer can be a huge boon—or a struggle. A “generalist” outsourcer that serves a number of different clients across various industries is sometimes a better fit.
You might have already asked about services when you requested a quote from your potential outsourcing partner, but did you really stop to examine what you were getting for the fee?
Take a good, hard look at the service the company offers you. How does it compare to the service offerings of others competing for your business? Maybe one company offers better customer support. Another might include certain “bells and whistles” others want you to pay more for.
Further to this, you should always ask what services the company offers and which ones you really need. If the company offers only one or two of the core services you require, you’ll likely want to consider a different partner. If the outsourcer offers you a package deal, be sure the package includes the services you truly want and need, both now and in the future.
Checking out a provider’s list of services can also give you a good idea of how your partnership with them may evolve and grow in the future. You may not be able to anticipate every service you’ll need, but you may be able to spot a few future candidates on the outsourcer’s list.
If your company suddenly experienced a boom in business, how easily could your potential outsourcing partner keep up?
It’s an important question to ask because your company isn’t going to stagnate and stay one size forever. At least, you hope not—you want to grow! If a potential provider isn’t equipped to handle growth, you need to look elsewhere for services.
After reviewing all of these factors, it’s easy to see price can’t be your only consideration when it comes to selecting an outsourcing partner. Instead, focus on these factors to find the absolute best fit for your business.