Caroline Dauden, Negosentro | For any small business, growth is the ultimate aim. It’s how small businesses become big businesses. It’s how local businesses become global names. Growing a business is something that takes a lot of different skills, and it’s important to remember that you may not have all the skills necessary to do what you want to do when it comes to boosting your business’s reach. It’s a rare thing for a business owner to be able to do everything required which is why sometimes it’s vital to outsource those tasks if you want to see your business succeed.
Stepping away from taking on all the different roles required might be difficult for some entrepreneurs, but it is an important lesson to learn because not only does outsourcing mean that your business is built in the right way by professionals, but it also frees you up to run the business. Here are some of the ways that a small business can successfully outsource.
Hiring a marketing agency to run your marketing and advertising campaigns is often an extremely good idea. A good agency with plenty of experience will know which methods to use when it comes to marketing your company so that you come across as a business that people want to work with. They will also be able to determine (through the correct market research) who your ideal audience is and market to them directly.
It takes a lot of time and talent to create and distribute marketing material, and this is the time that a small business owner is unlikely to be able to spare and talent that they just might not have. If you don’t hire a marketing agency, then you could run into problems because you just don’t have the time to create a memorable, attractive, lead-producing campaign. Instead, you might create something that no one even notices.
Research suggests that when you are multi-tasking, you are actually a lot less productive – perhaps by as much as 40 percent – than if you concentrate on just one job at a time. The tasks will also take longer to complete, and you will feel more stressed. Therefore, if you find that you are having to juggle a lot of jobs at once, outsourcing at least some of them will help ease your stress levels and make you more productive. Bookkeeping is exactly the type of task that should be outsourced; something that could take you many hours to complete would take a professional, dedicated bookkeeper just a few minutes, for example.
Multi-tasking can also lead to mistakes, where one task is confused for another or where a dip in concentration has meant an error has occurred. When it comes to your company’s finances, you really can’t afford to make any mistakes which is yet another reason why outsourcing the bookkeeping to an expert will always work in your favor.
The payroll system may seem like a simple enough task, but there is more to it than just working out how much each employee should be paid that month. You also need to be aware of the different tax laws and regulations that go with paying someone a salary. Making an error here could mean a time-consuming tax audit which could cost you many thousands of dollars of lost working time.
Outsourcing your payroll needs to a separate company means you can rest assured that all the correct taxes will be accounted for and paid and that everyone will get the right amount of money. Everything will be worked out for you, and all you will need to do is make the payments on time. If you have internet banking set up, then this really shouldn’t take too long at all.
One of the most frustrating and time-consuming parts of selling anything is finding the leads in the first place. It can account for most (sometimes all) of a salesperson’s day. If they were passed a list of warm or hot leads each morning that they could visit or phone and sell to straight away without the need to qualify or call back numerous times their productivity would increase hugely, as would your bottom line. There are companies who will make the initial cold calls for you and only pass over those names and contact details of people who genuinely do want to set up a meeting or will buy over the phone.
There is some work involved in this, however. Firstly, you will need to ensure that the outsourcing company understands what it is you do in order to explain it to the people they are phoning. They will also need to know how your company differentiates itself from others who are offering the same or a similar service or product. Once this initial information has been given, the leads will start to come in much more quickly.
You may even want to take this task further and have someone make the appointments as well as finding the leads. That way your sales team can truly focus on one thing; selling.
It’s so easy for a business owner to get caught up doing tasks that take up all of their time with very little benefit to the growth of the business (even if they are absolutely necessary to keep the business running steadily). This is when outsourcing to a virtual assistant can be an excellent idea. It will give the business owner a lot more time to work on the business rather than answering emails and phone calls, setting appointments, and other administrative tasks.
A virtual assistant is especially useful for sole traders who have no one else to help out with the admin of the company, but even if there are other employees, it can be less expensive to hire a VA instead of a full or part-time employee. This is because you will only ever have to pay for the hours that are worked when you have a VA, rather than having to pay an employee even if there is nothing for them to do.