Bits & Bytes
The Monthly Newsletter from Outsource2india
September 2009, Volume 19

Guide to Successful Outsourcing

Outsourcing non-critical business functions to an offshore service provider is the key to achieve fluidity in business operations. However, it is important that you go about outsourcing in the right manner. A little bit of guidance can result in great benefits. A few precautions that you need to take while outsourcing your business requirements to an offshore service provider are:

Five Tips to Help You Get Outsourcing Right

  1. Determine Your Strategic Goals: Before outsourcing, determine the main purpose as to why you are outsourcing. Establish the strategic goals before investing time and money in an outsourcing deal. Think and analyze carefully as to how you are going to benefit from the outsourced services. Be clear about what you want. If an additional employee in your organization can manage your task efficiently, then don't outsource. However, if you need specialized services rendered by professionals, at cheaper rates, then go for the outsourcing option.
  2. Select the Right Service Provider: Ask the right questions to your prospective offshore service provider to ensure that the objective of your deal is clearly understood. Ask questions like:
    • In which country is the service provider's headquarters located?
    • How long have they been providing offshore services?
    • Who would be doing your work - the service provider or the service provider's partners?
    • What are the service provider's strengths and weaknesses?
    Weigh all the factors related to your service provider and finally, select one. Don't select the service provider that quotes the least. Cheap services might not necessarily be good. Opt for a service provider that strikes a fine balance between costs, promise on delivery and turnaround time and quality.
  3. Determine Deliverables and Expectations: Selecting the right offshore service provider would not ensure success in your outsourcing project. You will have to clearly communicate to your service provider what you expect from them and what are the deliverables that they have to revert with. You would also have to consider other factors such as time, resources and schedule of delivery while ascertaining the list of deliverables. Without a list of deliverables, you cannot hold your service provider responsible for work not done. Besides, it is important that you and your service provider agree on a list of deliverables for your project, otherwise, you might end up blaming each other for work not done.
  4. Ask for Regular Updates: Once you and your service provider have finalized the nuances of your outsourcing agreement and the work has kick started, ask your service provider to send you constant updates on the progress of your outsourcing project. It is very important to keep a check on the progress of your project. It helps you check if your service provider is delivering services as promised at the time of signing the contract. Besides, if you are updated about the progress of your project on a regular basis, you and your service provider can collectively find out better ways of doing things. It might spark off an innovative idea, which could further reduce costs and improve productivity.
  5. Relationship Building: Treat your service provider as you would like to be treated. Build an amicable professional relationship with your service provider so that the going does not get tough. Treat them as valuable members of your team. The best outsourcing relationships are open and honest. Share your company's vision and goals with your service provider so that they get an idea of where you want to go and what you expect from them. Your service provider can do wonders to your project. Maintain a good relationship and aim at making it last longer. Besides, both you and your service provider will benefit to a great extent from this wonderful relationship.

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