How to Solve Problems with Offshore Staffing

Much has been said about the disadvantages of offshore outsourcing. But while public perception is generally negative, many small businesses are quietly benefiting from it. The best solution has always been prevention rather than cure.

Demystify The Myth

If you're a small business that's completely new to the outsourcing industry, the most common criticisms you'll hear are:
  • Loss of control
  • Local unemployment
  • Regional differences such as time zone and cultural gap
  • People with bad accents in poor working conditions
  • Substandard work/they just do what they're told

All of these problems are completely avoidable with research, due diligence, and collaboration.  Outsourcing is a toolbox. While outsourcing clients are still driven by costs, changes in ITO and emergence of tech-enabled BPO processes are proof that there's a shift to value-based outsourcing. There are different kinds of sourcing strategies and services. Best of all, you don't have to touch that toolbox if you aren't prepared to use it.

Use Your Common Sense

Offshore staffing opens up new challenges and risks. It requires: 

  • Preparation - includes analysing business needs and goals, preparing a contract, selecting a service provider, negotiating a deal, and overseeing the engagement
  • Communication - communicate with the point of contact - usually an operations manager - to ensure that business objectives are aligned with operational goals, as well as visit the offshore staff
  • Governance - built-in security and quality control  measures

Every other deal with a supplier entails the same thing. The details are different but the necessary steps are similar. You can hire the right offshore staff and mitigate risks.

Manage Expectations

Most small businesses get into outsourcing to cut costs, which is understandable. But solely focusing on costs can significantly affect results. Like any other vendor, service providers also need to maintain their profit margins.

If you want something more from your offshore staff, then shift from task- to goal-oriented outsourcing. This way, your offshore staff doesn't just do what your service level agreement demands, but contribute to the business as a whole.

Offshore staffing is not a Swiss army knife. Before you go down the rabbit hole, you have to prepare and anticipate what may bite your hand off.

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