Running a successful business requires a wide range of skills, from financial planning to marketing to customer service to IT, just to name a few. If you’re extremely talented or you have a large staff, you may be able to handle all the tasks you need to do in-house. But if you’re like most businesses, you may find that you need to call upon outside talent to support your in-house team.
This is why smart companies outsource consultants as a fundamental business management strategy. Hiring consultants can bring numerous benefits to your business, including cutting costs, saving time, expanding capacity, improving customer service quality, and more. Here’s a look at why companies hire outside consultants, what benefits outsourcing offers, and what software requirements you need to support your outsourcing strategy.
Why Companies Need to Outsource Consultants
When you’re starting a business, at first you may be your company’s only employee, so it may seem like you need to do everything yourself. A small business owner may do everything from accounting and tax preparation to marketing and sales to technical support. As the business grows, you may be tempted to continue running their business this way to maintain control and keep payroll costs low. But research shows that multitasking this way causes a 40 percent drop in productivity, diminishing focus and increasing stress levels. Consistent with this, one in three small business owners say that taking on too many roles is the bad habit they’d most like to quit.
Hiring employees is one way to solve this problem, but it can lead to similar issues if you try to keep all your business functions in-house. Each employee you hire has a limited skill set, and if you have a small staff, it’s unlikely that your in-house team has all the skills necessary to run your business. If you try to run your whole business in-house under these conditions, your employees will each end up wearing many hats, diminishing their productivity just as a solo business owner trying to run everything on their own would. The alternative is to hire a larger staff, but this can make your payroll costs spiral out of control, in addition to making the task of managing your business more complex.
The Benefits of Outsourcing Consulting
The challenges of trying to run a business yourself or with a small staff is why many businesses initially turn to outside consultants. Smaller companies find that their efficiency improves and their costs fall when they bring in outside help. But it’s not just small businesses that benefit from consultants. Large companies actually outsource even more than small businesses, because they know it’s an effective business strategy. A survey of multi-billion dollar companies by Deloitte found that the majority outsource IT, legal services, real estate and facilities management, and taxes, and over four in ten outsource human resources, finance, and procurement. Companies participating in the survey reported that they enjoyed a wide range of benefits from using outside consultants:
- Cutting costs: hiring consultants reduces the wages and benefits costs of hiring full-time in-house staff
- Frees time to focus on core business functions: when you delegate responsibility to outsourcing partners, you have more time to concentrate on what your in-house team does best
- Overcomes capacity limitations: tapping into outside resources can enable you to overcome physical or digital space limitations
- Improves customer service quality: hiring outside consultants to run your contact call center can improve your support efficiency and customer satisfaction
- Empowering essential business tasks: hired consultants can manage critical business functions such as IT support, accounting, and marketing
- Taps outside talent: consultants can bring talent to the table that expands the capability of your in-house team
- Optimizes business environment: expert consultants can help you manage your customer relationships for increased lead generation, higher sales, and greater customer retention
- Supports organizational transformation: outsourced consultants can form an integral part of a business transformation strategy to streamline your operations for maximum performance
This vast range of benefits makes a compelling case for the advantages of outsourcing.
Software Requirements for Outsourcing Consultation Effectively
In order to work effectively with your outsourcing partners, you’ll ideally want to have several key pieces of software in place:
- A unified communications (UCaaS) platform that lets you communicate with your consulting team through any media, including VoIP, video chat, chat, texting, and email
- Videoconferencing software built into your UCaaS solution so that your team can meet remotely in a common visual environment
- Collaboration software for scheduling tasks, sharing files, and tracking progress
- Contact center as a service (CCaaS) software, if you intend to outsource your call center to a consulting team
Having this software infrastructure set up will help you get the most benefit out of your outsourcing efforts.
Using outsourcing consultants is a smart business strategy because of the wide range of benefits it conveys, enabling you to lower costs and improve performance while saving time. Hiring help makes more business sense than trying to go it alone. Your business has enough on its plate. Outsource what makes sense for your business, choose a world class SaaS technology solution and focus on what's important: your clients. Call 1-866-879-8647 or fill out an online form to request a no-obligation quote from an 8x8 product specialist.