Starting and running your own business sounds glamorous, unless that is, you actually do it. Having the title of CEO or owner can get you a lot of attention and respect with your peers, family and friends, but the real day-to-day of running a success business is far from glamorous.
Often times, you can find yourself wearing multiple hats in any given weeks. One day, not only are you the CEO, you’re also the Chief Financial Officer, Chief Human Resources Officer and VP of Sales.
The next day, you’re the Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Customer Service Officer, break room cleaner and trash taker outer. Yes, most days as a business owner are not at all glamorous.
To make life easier, there are places you can outsource many of the things you have to do on any given day. In fact, there are a lot of upsides to outsourcing.
For one, you don’t have to hire or manage employees. Given the current business environment of minimum wages, high cost of health insurance and other benefits, you are far better off using outsources to do your day to day work.
In fact, outsourcing via freelancers is growing at a rapid pace. Freelancer are predicted to become the majority of the U.S. workforce by 2027 according to this report by UpWork.
It seems as if many millennials especially love the mobility, flexibility and freedom that freelancing affords. That means the growing pool of people who can outsource for you is growing, thereby providing ample supply of people and expertise for whatever your business needs. It also means you’ll be able to get these freelancers at competitive rates.
Here are 7 services that you may not have known you can outsource. Let’s start with the most boring function in any business. That is, bookkeeping and accounting.
1. Bookkeeping and Accounting
Most small businesses don’t need an accountant on staff. Many don’t even need a full time bookkeeper.
There are many firms like TW Accounting & Business Solutions.
You can find them online here: https://www.twaccounting.com.au. They will do this work for you. They’ll set you up with an accounting system and even staff if for you on their end.
That last thing you need to worry about as a business owner or entrepreneur is your accounting system. If your have an outsourced firm working on it for you, you can focus on growth and your customers.
You may have a vision for your brand and how you want to market your business, but you need a team to execute and make it happen. As a small business owner or entrepreneur, you probably don’t have the resources for a full time marketing expert to be on your staff. In fact, you may not even need a full time marketing person.
The great news is there are marketing experts galore online that you can tap into. In fact, by not having just one person doing all of your marketing, you can hire specialists to do the individual tasks you need done.
A great place to start is a website called Fiverr. They have literally thousands of marketing experts in every category imaginable to tap into.
If you need a logo done, you can find a graphic designer that specializes in that. If you need a promo video made, there are produces on their who have great stock footage that they can customize for you at a low price.
If you need copy writing, an announcer to talk about your business on video or someone to help with SEO, you can find it all on Fiverr.
The only thing to watch out for is quality and communication. It’s hard to find that one quality person for each of these categories.
Also, many of the sellers are international and it can be hard to communicate with them sometimes. Most can communicate at least a little in English, but if you have a very specific need or a narrow vision for what you want, this may not be the best avenue.
As the business owner, you want to be the Chief Sales Officer at all times. You want to be the best and biggest evangelist for what you do. That being said, you can outsource a lot of the other sales functions that could save you a ton of time.
Specifically, you can outsource your lead generation. There are many people who are looking for opportunities to make cold calls and prospect from the comforts of their own home offices.
They are also called appointment setters, sales development reps, demand generation experts, etc.
Yes, you want your marketing apparatus to do lead generation as well. That is called inbound marketing. But you also want to do outbound marketing as well. That is known more as prospecting or cold calling.
4. Virtual Assistant
Organizing digital files, doing menial but necessary tasks online, scheduling calendars and online research are all things that can be done by a virtual assistant.
This is especially useful if you have a system of simple tasks that have to be done on a regular basis. If these tasks are simply rinse and repeat-type things, having a virtual assistant may be a great person to offload to.
5. Customer Service
There are many outsourcing firms that specialize in customer service. If you need a help desk or call center to receive customer calls, using one of these firms will not only ensure responsive service to your customers, it will save you a ton of time and energy fielding them yourself.
Make sure the firm you’re working with have good English speakers. Also, make sure there is a way for you to evaluate the quality of the service they are giving to your customers. They may not be as caring as you, but you need them to get pretty close.
6. Order Fulfillment
If you’re in the business of selling a physical product, you may want to consider outsourcing your fulfillment process. It would save you from having to get a warehouse and hire employees to stock, pick, and ship your orders.
Fulfillment by Amazon or simply known as FBA, has become extremely popular with online retailers in the last decade. This is basically where you ship Amazon your products and they fulfill them for you when orders come in. And you don’t even have to sell on Amazon in order to use this service.
If you’re a retailer with a physical storefront, you may want to consider outsourcing your security. Hiring, training and managing your own security team comes with a lot of costs, overhead and liabilities.
Simply hiring an outside firm to provide security for your store would be advantageous.
I hope this post helped you think through what you could potentially outsource for yourself and your business. It’s a great way to leverage the human capital available out there without taking on the overhead of hiring a bunch of employees.