Published April 27, 2010

How Small Businesses Can Make the Most of Outsourcing

Small business owners have many challenges to face on the front line of operations. While we've talked about the benefits of building a support team to help small business owners get the advice they need for certain business operations, sometimes it is just best to outsource a business need altogether.

Outsourcing benefits can be tremendous. Outsourcing is simply paying another business to perform a service or task that could otherwise be done within the business. One of the biggest and most widely used outsourcing examples is temporary employee agencies. When a business has need for extra staff and doesn't want to hire a full-time year-round employee, temporary staffing can do the trick and save the company money in the long run.

However, temporary staff is only one example. There are many ways a small business can outsource business functions, such as:

  • Product assembly
  • Business accounting or bookkeeping
  • Product delivery and distribution
  • Janitorial services
  • Grounds maintenance
  • Administrative management
  • Customer service

You can see just how wide and varied outsourcing areas can be. However, while a small business owner can outsource almost any business function, choosing outsourcing wisely for the greatest benefit is the key.

  • Saving Time

    One outsourcing benefit may be to save time. Small business owners may not have time to perform certain but important business functions. Accounting is a prime example of a dreaded time-consuming small business task. While a small business owner may not have a need for a full-time bookkeeper, by contracting with a private local bookkeeping firm, a business owner transfers this time-consuming task to a specialist and frees up time to focus on other important business functions.

  • Saving Money

    Outsourcing benefits also include saving money. Say you have a product that you invented. However, manufacturing that product would take considerable financial capital to acquire all the machinery necessary to produce the product. By outsourcing the production process to a company that specializes in small business manufacturing, you can reduce the amount of startup capital you need and get your product made by a quality producer.

  • Outsourcing Undesirable Functions

    Oftentimes a small business will outsource functions that the owner simply does not want to do. Outsourcing trends have created a need for specialized businesses like janitorial or landscaping services. Business owners are often much too busy with the day to day processes to worry about small things like emptying garbage and recycling bins each night, cleaning toilets, or even just pulling weeds in front of their office space. However, these outsourcing benefits create a better use of a business owner's time.

    Some smart and savvy small business owners may even outsource almost every aspect of his or her business. An online e-commerce business is a good example. All products are produced and drop shipped by another company. A website could be developed and maintained by a professional webmaster. All the business owner has to do is decide what products to sell, and once all suppliers and marketing functions are set up, his business is virtually hands-free.

    Your business can benefit from strategic outsourcing. Determine what areas your business has that can make it run more efficiently and smoothly if the task was outsourced and contracted to a professional or specialist. Then enjoy the extra time, money, and more interesting tasks that made you want to start a business in the first place.