11 Tips To Manage Outsourced Projects As A Small Business
Any small business owner appreciates that knowing how to manage outsourced projects successfully is fundamental to staying afloat. In fact, 37% of small businesses outsource at least one business process, and global spending on outsourcing is expected to hit $731 billion by 2023. After all, if you have a boutique team to handle your clients and tasks to high quality, you need to prioritize. So, outsourcing projects and day-to-day operations that are not core to the business is a perfect solution to focus on the actual work.
Businesses have always been vulnerable to disruptive events. However, in 2022 and the unprecedented post-pandemic and economic challenges, organizations have to rapidly adapt their operations in order to survive. The cost of halting business mid-cycle and then restarting work whenever possible is extremely high.
As a result, many companies are now developing contingency plans that will enable them to continue operations in the event of extreme circumstances. Some of the strategies started during the pandemic crisis. Examples include remote working, digital transformation, and the outsourcing of non-essential functions. By investing in these resilience measures now, businesses can ensure that they are able to weather any storm in the future.
Are you a small business owner who is thinking about outsourcing projects? If so, you’re in luck. Here are 11 tips to help you manage outsourced projects successfully. By following these tips, you’ll be able to get the most out of your outsourcing relationship and ensure that your project is a success. Keep reading for more information.
How To Manage Outsourced Projects: 11 Tips For Small Businesses
1. Define your objectives
Before you even start looking for an outsourcing partner, you need to take some time to define your objectives. What do you want to achieve when you manage outsourced projects? What are your specific goals? By having a clear understanding of your objectives, you’ll be able to keep track of internal matters as well as those you gave away.
2. Do your research
Don’t just pick the first outsourcing partner that you come across. In order to manage outsourced projects effectively, you need to make sure you work with experienced professionals. Take the time to do your research and compare different providers. Look at their portfolios, read reviews, and get in touch with their previous clients. By doing your homework, you’ll be able to find a provider that you can trust.
3. Set realistic expectations
It’s important to set realistic expectations when you manage outsourced projects. Remember that you’re working with a third-party provider, so there will be some level of communication and coordination required. Don’t expect miracles; instead, focus on setting achievable goals that you know your outsourcing partner can help you meet. Also, think of ways to use collaboration tools that will make comms between your team and the external partner as smooth and timely as possible.
4. Communicate clearly
One of the most important aspects of successfully managing outsourced projects is clear communication. Make sure you lay out your goals and the processes they include at the very beginning. Once the project gets underway, maintain regular communication with your provider so that everyone is on the same page.
5. Be flexible
Things change, and that’s normal. If your project needs to pivot in a different direction, be willing to be flexible. If you don’t keep an open mind and try to force your outsourcing partner to stick to your original plan, it will only lead to frustration and resentment.
6. Manage expectations
Throughout the project, it’s important to manage expectations. This includes your own expectations as well as those of your team and stakeholders. If you set unrealistic expectations, it will only lead to disappointment later on. Be realistic about what can be accomplished and manage everyone’s expectations accordingly.
7. Set clear milestones
One way to help keep your project on track is to set clear milestones. This will give you something to measure progress against and help ensure that everyone stays focused. Make sure that your milestones are realistic and achievable, and don’t hesitate to adjust them as needed.
8. Be prepared for the unexpected
Even the best-planned projects can go off the rails sometimes. Be prepared for the unexpected and have a contingency plan in place in case something goes wrong. By being prepared, you’ll be able to mitigate any potential problems and keep your project on track.
9. Keep an eye on the budget
Outsourcing can save you a lot of money, but only if it’s done correctly. In fact, 70% of businesses outsource precisely to reduce costs. Keep an eye on your budget and make sure that you’re not overspending. If you’re not careful, you could end up spending more than you intended and blowing your budget completely.
10. Document everything
Of course, make sure that you document everything. This includes communication with your outsourcing partner, project milestones, invoices, and any changes that are made along the way. By having everything documented, you’ll be able to manage outsourced projects in a transparent way for both parties. Also, this way you can refer back later if there are any issues.
11. Use CRM for Business Communications
It may be tempting to outsource prospecting and email communications before a lead has officially converted to a paying client. However, customers appreciate honesty and transparent company culture from the beginning of their relationship with your brand. Thus, it’s better to manage client communications internally. A WordPress CRM plugin integrate with your company site dashboard is an easy way to monitor progress on conversations for each lead or customer.
Being able to manage outsourced projects can be a challenge for small businesses. However, with the right tools and planning, it can be a successful endeavor. We’ve outlined 11 tips to help you get started, but keep in mind that each project is unique and will require its own approach. Just remember to communicate clearly, set clear milestones, and manage expectations. If you do that, you’re sure to have a successful experience. Finally, if you want an easy way to manage all your business communications, check out WP-CRM, a client relationship management plugin for WordPress. With WP-CRM, you can keep track of all your conversations with clients, vendors, and partners in one place. So why wait? Get started today!