Outsourcing can be a good way to expand your business this year. With my business clients, one of the primary themes that we discuss when getting their businesses off the ground is to keep the fixed overhead costs as low as possible to start. There are thousands of vendors out there waiting to take your money. They love to sign you up for long-term service plans. But often, you don’t need those services yet. Or you only need those services for a short time. In those cases, I recommend that you consider using independent contractors where you can.
Another tool in your toolbox can be outsourcing parts of your operation. Companies often outsource their customer service and shipping. Last week, CEOWorld magazine had a good article discussing factors to consider when outsourcing seems like the next step for your business.
The 6 Factors to Consider
When you’ve identified who you want to partner with for your outsourcing, CEOWorld’s got 6 things to consider:
- Get to know the management team – hopefully, your team and their team can work well together
- Review the legal agreements you’ll be signing – make sure you understand what you are signing (and it’s a good idea to have your lawyer look at it as well)
- Compare pricing across various vendors – watch out for hidden fees and ensure that you understand the pricing of their services
- Determine the company’s flexibility – because something always comes up
- Communication – how do they communicate and how will that work with your team
- Inspect their site – depending on what kind of service they are providing, you’ll want to make sure that their site is appropriate for your needs
Especially in a retail business, outsourcing things like shipping your product can make a lot of sense. While it may have been fun to handle it all yourselves when you first started out, there’s only so many hours in a day. At some point, it comes time to pass off some functions to someone else. This allows you to focus on growing the business. You’ve got more time to plot and design the way forward. It’s the high-level thinking that you hopefully find exciting about running a business.
If your business is considering outsourcing or using an independent contractor, give me a call and we can sit down for a Legal Strategy Session to discuss how to tailor an independent contractor agreement or outsourcing agreement for your company – (877) AMAYERS.