Growth is not just about how much you can do yourself but also who you have on your team to help you get it done. However, not everyone can afford to hire an in-house team to handle all of the tasks involved with running a growing business.
If this sounds like you, then it might be time to consider outsourcing some of your business tasks. Not only is outsourcing a smart financial move, it also enables you to maintain organisational agility and increase the quality of your output, whilst freeing up your own valuable time.
Let’s dive into why, how and when to outsource.
When Is the Right Time to Outsource?
The sooner the better, if you can afford it. When you first start your business, there are a lot of things to do and not much time. It’s easy to get bogged down by the tasks that need completing at this point in your business’ life cycle and neglect the activities that will really move the needle. Prevent yourself from wasting time on these tasks by outsourcing them to a team of freelancers.
If you feel overwhelmed and find that you’re going nowhere, then it’s definitely time to start outsourcing – otherwise, you’re holding yourself back from growth. As a business owner, there are certain tasks that you can do better than anyone else, so stop wasting your time on aspects of the business that someone else could easily handle.
As a business owner, your time is very valuable and so you need to invest it into the tasks which will really drive your enterprise forward. Besides, you deserve to have free time, too. You didn’t start your own business to spend every waking hour working. In fact, having more free time is actually beneficial to your business. You don’t come up with amazing ideas or do your best work when you’re stressed out and anxious.
When you try to do everything yourself, you act as a jack of all trades and a master of none. Outsourcing tasks to professionals means a higher quality of work and fewer mistakes, leading to happier clients and a better reputation.
Deciding Which Activities to Outsource
Of course, the activities you need to outsource depend on your unique business. Copywriters, for example, usually outsource their accounting – and vice versa.
A great way of deciding what tasks to outsource is by asking yourself “if I could only do three things today, which would they be?”
Furthermore, if you find yourself dreading a particular task, then it may be time to consider outsourcing. You’ll always work harder at the tasks you enjoy and complete them to a higher quality, so stop punishing yourself.
Begin by listing all the tasks that need completing and ask yourself: “Does this directly affect the growth or success of my business in any way?” If the answer is no, then it’s probably not worth your time and you can outsource it instead. Make sure your list is prioritised according to relevance; these low-priority tasks should be outsourced first.
Some examples of commonly outsourced tasks are:
- Legal services
- Web design
- Social media
- Public relationships
- Graphic design
- Admin and inbox management
Finding Reliable Freelancers and Contractors
The best way to go about finding a good freelancer or contractor is by asking around for recommendations from business peers. It’s a good idea to work with contractors who have knowledge and experience of your industry. LinkedIn, Google and Facebook are also great places to find freelancers.
It’s a good idea to shop around and get an idea of what you can expect to pay, as this will give you a benchmark. You don’t want to get ripped off, of course, but you should be equally wary of freelancers who charge the bare minimum because that is what they’re likely to do for you in turn.
If you’re struggling to keep up with the growing demands of your business, it might be time to consider outsourcing some tasks. Outsourcing can not only free up valuable time for growth-related activities but also helps to ensure that all the important tasks are completed on time and to a high standard.
Start by prioritising what needs doing most urgently but don’t neglect other tasks which are important but not necessarily urgent, such as bookkeeping or creating marketing materials.
Many business owners are initially afraid to outsource because they fear it means giving up control but the opposite is true – outsourcing gives you more control than ever over your business, time and money.