Do you get caught up doing mundane tasks in your business?
Outsourcing overseas can be a simple way to get things done with qualified professionals for as little as $5/hour.
The great thing is this is easier than ever before with sites such as UpWork, Airtasker, Guru and Fiverr who have large pools of talent ready to work for your business. Many are university trained and qualified and can support your business in flexible ways.
I have used outsourcing for many tasks from building databases, graphic design, PowerPoint templates, video production, to transcribing and writing articles
It is not necessarily all smooth sailing though – I know I have had both good and bad experiences when using outsourcing over the past 7 years.
Here are my top 5 tips when considering outsourcing tasks overseas:
1) Start Small
Work out a small project or task you could send overseas eg business card design, market research or a blog article.
Test a few providers out at every stage of the process – from choosing, delegating and working with them. Get to know their working style and habits on a small portion of work. This is just as much about you learning hot to use outsourcing as it is about getting the job done.
2) Clearly Define Outcomes
One thing I love about outsourcing is that it will really refine your delegation skills. Be very clear on the exact outcomes, deliverables and milestones and any resources they will need to access. Provide examples of past work or similar styles you like.
If outsourcing repetitive tasks, take the time to record a system so they can follow. Treat them as you would any employee in your business so they will require training for some tasks.
3) Look for a Track Record
The great thing about many of the sites I mentioned above is that you can review the track record of the person you are considering hiring. Look at their rating for both quality of work and speed of delivery. Ask any questions you need to make sure you are comfortable with the person you are hiring.
Never settle for second best or go for the cheapest option – after all you are hiring this person to save you time so you do not want to chew up time managing a poor performer.
4) Interview before Hiring
Arrange a Skype or phone interview to talk to the person before hiring them. Make sure they say who they say they are and probe into their track record. Get a feel as to how well you communicate with them as after all this will be the core of your relationship.
5) Hold on to Top Performers
If you find someone you who you really work well with and deliver what they promise – hold on to them. Look at offering them a bonus, retainer or longer term contract.
At the very least start to see these as an extension to your team and have them ready on the sidelines for any projects you may have
Last of all, have fun with it – I have found outsourcing has been a very rewarding experience and has enabled me to free up time and money to grow other areas of my business.