The Power Of Outsourcing

The Power Of Outsourcing

There’s no doubt about it: outsourcing important tasks to qualified freelancers is the easiest way to free up your time and resources while being able to focus on the things that matter most.

And it helps you to work on your business rather than in your business, which means you have a good overall view of what your business is doing and the direction you want to take it, rather than getting bogged down in everyday tasks that you really shouldn’t be doing.

But outsourcing is more than just time management and being able to spend more time doing what you enjoy.

By hiring qualified professionals, you’re able to tap into new markets, expand your outreach and test new products and ideas that you may otherwise not be able to develop on your own.

Think about the countless businesses that have benefited by hiring app developers, or companies that outsource all of their brand-building and marketing campaigns so they can focus on brainstorming new avenues and products.

We’re all good at some things and not-so-great at other tasks associated with our business so it only makes sense to hand over the reins to someone who can do a better job then we can.

That doesn’t mean that you’re giving up control of your business.  Your freelancers will work behind the scenes for you, at your discretion.  They will follow your lead and work hard to get the job done – with no credit.

Yet you reap all the rewards.

Now, let’s look at the importance of utilizing contracts in order to protect yourself and your business.  You need to read this before you even consider hiring a freelancer.

Contracts That Protect You

Before you seek out potential candidates to fulfil the gaps in your business, you need to make sure you have all your ducks in a row – starting with contracts.

Contracts, such as NDA (non-disclosure agreements) ensure that your information, ideas or discussions are kept private and that freelancers aren’t able to discuss or share any part of your project with other potential partners or employers.

This is not only important when it comes to hiring authors and writers to develop content where you wouldn’t want them to share that work as samples for future positions, but it’s also important regardless of the type of freelancer you hire.

You want to make sure that all your ideas and creative output is protected and that whatever you discuss with freelancers remains confidential.

Many people make the mistake of thinking that NDA’s are only assigned once you have hired a freelancer when in reality, you can easily require a potential freelancer to sign an NDA before you even begin discussing the project or the possibility of them joining your team.

Here are a few resources I recommend if you’re looking for pre-made contracts and NDA’s that you can customize to suit your needs:

https://www.jotform.com/pdf-templates/contract

https://www.legalcontracts.com/

Keep in mind that these are templates designed to give you an outline but aren’t necessarily entirely applicable to your business. You should eliminate clauses that don’t apply to you or add new clauses as necessary before you ask anyone to sign them.

Next let’s look at the importance of properly managing a team.

Managing Your Outsourcing Team

You’ve assembled a team of skilled freelancers and you’re ready to put them to work.

What’s next?

Teamwork! Your freelancers will only do a great job for you if you manage them properly and build a cohesive team that includes you, your full-time employees, and your freelancers.

In this section, I’ll explain some of the key strategies you can use to manage your freelance team members and maximize productivity.

Communication

The key to managing any team is communication. It’s one of the most important leadership skills to have. Without it, your other skills and strategies won’t amount to much.

With it, you can do anything.

It’s important to set up lines of communication for you and your team members. Here are a few suggestions that you may find useful:

  • Create expectations for communication by email.

For example, you might let your team members know that you expect them to respond within one business day when you send them an email.

  • Set up an online messaging board or use a content management system like Asana to assign work, exchange notes, and track the progress of each freelancer and their assignments.
  • Schedule a weekly conference call or Skype to check in and make sure that your team members have what they need.

That takes care of the organizational part of communication, but I also want to talk about the kind of casual communication that rarely gets discussed, so let’s look at that now.

The Importance Of Open Communication

In the previous section we were talking about how to effectively manage a team of freelancers, but can you guess what one of the most common reasons that projects get delayed or deadlines aren’t met?

Lack of acknowledgement!

When a freelancer delivers work to you, always acknowledge it.

Make sure you let them know that you got it, and if you won’t be reading or reviewing it immediately, make sure they know that, too.

It’s also a good idea to give feedback on the work you receive even if you don’t have any changes.

Every freelancer appreciates that kind of communication and believe it or not, it’s rare.

Finally, you should also let your freelancers know that you (or someone you designate) can be available to answer questions at their request.

What you don’t want is freelancers who are second-guessing themselves or you, feeling adrift because you haven’t responded, or wondering what you think of their work.

While you don’t want to spend too much time micro-managing your freelancers, it’s important that you open up a channel of communication and that you stay available during projects.

If you want a structured system for this to make it easier to manage, consider adding your team to a SLACK channel so that you can communicate both individually and as a team.

You can also set up a schedule so that your freelancers know when you’re available and when you’re not.

Well, there is a lot more to be learnt about outsourcing for efficiency; far more than can be covered in this short post, but if you’d like to know more about this, then click on the featured resource below where you can pick up a free report that covers this topic in more detail. Download it, read it and take action 😊

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