In its most basic definition, a startup is a company that is in the very first stage of its operations. In fact, most Google searches regarding things a startup should know will inevitably throw up phrases like small scale operations, funded by entrepreneurs and limited resources. These may sound negative, but they are all part and parcel of starting a new business, something that is highly constrained by two main areas, the size of your operation and the size of your bank balance. As such, a good way to use the resources available to you is outsourcing certain tasks. This will lighten your load and prevent any need for you to grow too fast too quickly, which can seriously damage your company’s chance of longevity.
Benefits of outsourcing
There is a multitude of reasons why you should consider outsourcing some of your non-core business functions to service companies, or freelancers, that will help boost your startup’s chances of success. The first is that of time. By outsourcing, you will free up a lot more time to concentrate on your business, whether it offers a service or a product. In addition to this, outsourcing to freelancers has proven to be cost-effective for new businesses, whilst you don’t run the risk of having full-time staff to pay should finances become tight. The other benefit with hiring freelancers is that of quality assurance; if they don’t deliver, you can change who you hire, whilst the work they produce is usually done quickly to benefit their own income.
What tasks to outsource
There are usually quite a few different operations and services you will require as a startup but may not have the capacity to complete in-house. These services tend to include:
By outsourcing these areas of your business, you will be able to concentrate on what you do best whilst ensuring the work done by freelancers is to a high standard. It is also a great way to start getting the word out about your business.
Advice when outsourcing
It is important to understand that, while freelancing comes with a lot less complication than that of hiring full-time staff, any outsourcing requires important management skills and organisation. As such, you should start by making a list of all the tasks you will need to outsource. Make this list as detailed and easy to read as possible; this will boost your efficiency, reduce confusion and clarify who has accountability. It is also important that you have a confidentiality agreement in place before hiring any external parties. Once these steps are in place, make sure you do your research to find the most qualified service providers able to meet your requirements and demands. Once you are happy with your decision, build a relationship to ensure efficiency over time.
What not to outsource
Not everything should be outsourced. In fact, there are some areas of your business that should not be handed over to any third party under any condition. As a rule of thumb, anything that relates to your core business functions should not be outsourced. The same goes for any area of your business that is dependent on proprietary company information. The other area not to outsource is any that may affect Quality Assurance.
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