Whether to outsource or hire in-house is a decision that affects businesses of all sizes in all industries. There are merits and drawbacks to both, and which decision is optimal largely depends on what you’re attempting to accomplish. In business, you always want to make the best decision the first time. If you’re contemplating which is best for your business, you have a few things to consider.
Is the Quality of the Talent an Issue?
If you need to hire the best person for a job no matter what, and you aren’t having a hard time finding an in-house candidate for a specific kind of work, you’re in a unique dilemma. You can hire in-house and keep someone on staff who may not be able to provide as much value as outsourcing the service to someone else. This is why so many companies outsource IT positions to larger companies who specialize in data security – a lot of the best IT people already work for private firms that provide B2B services.
Do You Have Access to Tools That Can Help?
Whether you can handle something in-house or you should outsource depends on what you’re capable of handling in-house. If having a specialty tool that would allow you to empower your current employees to handle a specific aspect of the business would eliminate the need to totally outsource a service or a process, you’re streamlining your daily duties. Do you need specialty services for your plumbing business? Get specialized plumbing software to use in-house. It could be as simple as that.
Do You Have a Large Workplace?
Some businesses choose to outsource because it makes things easier. If you need a person or a team of people to handle something critical, but you’d need to move into a larger office to be able to accommodate the completion of that work, things get complicated. Your overhead is going to go up, and you may need to break your lease early. Outsourcing may allow you to budget for a flat and predictable rate that won’t involve additional costs.
Do You Have a Long-Term Need for This Hire?
If you need a specific task performed under special circumstances, it doesn’t make sense to go through the onboarding process for such short-term work. For occasional needs, it’s always better to outsource. The process is a little less formal. Whether you’re outsourcing to a firm or a company that handles B2B services or freelancers who can occasionally pick up your overflow, you’re saving a lot of time and money without sacrificing deadlines or the quality of work.
For example, if you’re developing an app for your business that may need occasional maintenance, but need not be a fulltime job, outsourcing the development of this app likely makes more sense. You won’t need to retain app developers for such little work – just call them periodically when you want to add a feature or work out a bug.
How Will Your Decision Affect Your Dynamic?
If your workplace culture is centered around teamwork, community, and everyone knowing a little bit about everyone else’s jobs, outsourcing can upset the balance of unity and knowledge sharing. It might make more sense to provide more extensive training to your employees, empowering them to handle more and keeping familiarity at its height. Anyone you outsource to will never fully become a team member. Even if you save money by outsourcing, it may not be worth the breakdown of communication.
If you’re still unsure whether to hire in-house or outsource, the right answer might be to do a little bit of both. Always consider the task and its duration before making a final decision, and take into account the way your decision will affect your current team.