Outsourcing: The Secret Weapon for High-Growth Companies
As an increasing number of companies look to digital for growth and scale, they face many challenges on their way. From transforming their in-house and customer facing systems and software to deciding when (and who) to hire, and balancing budgets at the same time, it can be a lot to juggle and the stakes are high.
But here’s the thing- talent is difficult for companies to predict, and scaling can oftentimes hinder true progress for an organization. Whether it’s a lack of speed, the wrong people in seats, or the cost of hiring the specialists you need, or simply the cost of turnover, it’s a pain felt by many.
To Outsource, or Not to Oursource
It can be easy to look at massive organizations and assume that they have all of their efforts initiated in-house. But here’s the secret- they don’t! High-growth companies, even some of the largest in the world, outsource talent to augment their teams efficiently and effectively.
In favor of outsourcing
Here are some key benefits to organizations looking to outsource their talent for specific projects and endeavors:
Quick Access to Additional Talent
It’s no secret how costly it is to scale a team. It costs around $4100 to onboard a new employee, and even more than that to let them go (up to 30% of annual salary according to Forbes). Not to mention the money that goes into training, the time it takes to even find the talent, and the ramp-up process for them to grow accustomed to your processes, company culture, etc.
By outsourcing your talent, you can quickly and efficiently loop in talent that has already been vetted and you know you can trust. The burdens associated with hiring are no longer your responsibility, along with other big advantages including:
Easily Toggle Pipeline Up and Down
With access to an outsourced team, you are able to increase (or decrease) the numbers of team members and scope of skill-sets that you need.
We’ve worked with a variety of clients who unexpectedly experience team turnover and need immediate access to more team members and can’t afford to wait to interview, hire, and onboard in order to pick the project back up.
Minimize Overhead, Pay Only for What You Need
Hiring in-house means you pay for your team regardless of what is happening in the company. Project delays or gaps? You’ll still be paying your team and all the overhead that goes with it. Outsource and you only pay for what you need and use.
Gain Access to Unlimited Specialists
When you outsource your talent pipeline, you also gain immediate access to specialists who can provide expert direction and insight to your project.
Maintain Ongoing Innovation
Innovation silo’s are one of the biggest reasons to outsource. When in-house teams or individuals are not part of a larger team, they will stagnate and focus on what they already know. When you outsource, you are tapping into the constant innovation factor a good digital partner must have. And the best part is, you don’t have to pay for it AND your internal teams gain the benefits through exposure.
The Downside of Outsourcing
It’s Hard to Find a True Partner
Locating the right outsourcing partner can be a challenge, and not all companies are equal. The key is to go beyond just discussing requirements, timelines, availability and budget. Gain a clear understanding of their approach, and how they partner with clients. Ask for references and ask the same of them.
Yes, quality is paramount, but factors like responsiveness, collaboration and visibility can directly affect overall success. In other words, finding a partner who can truly work with your organization is as important as the talent they possess.
Dependency On Partner’s Ability to Source Talent
One of the drawbacks to outsourcing is loss of control on which resources join your project. A little insider advice, if you have no involvement or discussion on this front, that is a red flag.For example, determining if on, or offshore talent is best for the role and how that affects the working relationship (e.g. time zones, language, etc.) are discussions we will involve our clients in.
Maintaining Long-Term Relationship Can Be Tough
Maintaining ongoing relationships with an outsource partner that can weather the challenges and
unknowns is not easy. It’s just like any relationship! It takes a commitment from both clients and partners to grow together. In other words, it takes dedication from both sides to ensure ongoing success.
At the end of the day, understand your core needs
No one knows your business, and its needs, better than you. The best approach to engaging either in scaling your own team or seeking out an outsourced partnership is to go into it with clear expectations.
Here at TechFabric, our approach focuses on ongoing relationships, and we experience a client churn
rate of less than a third of the industry average. Our team structure, communications and transparency
are designed for extended relationships, but not all partners work this way. Ask your potential partners
about this. What is their churn rate and why? If they don’t know the answer to that, they are probably
more focused on shorter project cycles and may not be the best fit for long-term engagements.
Ultimately, there is no right or wrong way to consider outsourcing- and it always boils down to the needs and desires of the organization.
That said, we know you are reading this looking for a solution; so let’s get to it.
What Works Best (and what many high-growth companies are already doing)
At TechFabric we believe that strategized partnerships have the power to scale technical solutions and optimize time and resources. What we often find is that the co-innovation model often works best for most businesses. In this model, there are key roles (e.g. Product Owner) in both the business and technology partner organizations. These roles work in tandem to “co-innovate” or combine their subject matter expertise to ensure everything built meets both the business, industry and technology needs.
This model gives the business more control but more importantly, ensures that software, systems, etc. are built and designed based on the actual business and its users, not just software or industry “best practices”. Using this approach creates far more usable solutions that provide immediate value to end-users, landing in their “sweet spot” from the first iteration. At TechFabric we’re all about reducing risk by gaining as much information and removing as many unknowns as possible, and the co-innovation approach does exactly that.
If you’ve read up until this point and still have questions, let’s chat!