As a Freelance Consultant it’s not surprising that I’m going to extol the virtues of Outsourcing but before you immediately reject this out of hand there are some definite advantages to consider.
Everything seems to be veering toward ‘as a service’ or a Pay as you Go model, so consider Outsourcing (whatever the function) as the same. You pay for what you need and only when you need it thus removing the cost of a member staff and everything associated with one (holidays, pensions, training).
Finding the right member of staff can be difficult. In general you’ll normally only attract people within a certain geographical area but with Consultants you can use people from further afield, even globally should you wish and in general, those offering consultancy services are highly skilled in their given field.
Possibly one of the greatest advantages of Outsourcing, is that you and the staff you do employ can focus solely on your core business, without having to detract any efforts to deal with areas such as HR, IT or Marketing,
Of course these benefits are great but Outsourcing can have some disadvantages, specifically a lack of control.
Whilst you can provide direction and give a clear and unambiguous brief, Outsourcing can lead to a lack of control, particularly if the Consultant is not based in your offices. A dip in communication will often make you feel as though a project is spiraling out of control, whether that be down to time zones (for overseas Consultants) or simply your Consultant doesn’t respond as quickly as you want. That said with a decent consultant this won’t be an issue. It won’t matter if they are in a different office let alone time zone!
A good Consultant makes your life easier and provides you with such a level of service you wouldn’t necessarily achieve in-house whilst keeping your costs down.