Small businesses have to do a lot with little. It can be a struggle to offer the tech-enabled customer experience or advanced services that bigger businesses do. Fortunately, there’s outsourcing: Instead of doing everything in-house, businesses can utilize affordable external tech expertise or resources instead. It’s key to keeping up with the competition and catering to customer expectations in this day and age.
Below, this article courtesy of certificateland.com covers some key tech-related tasks that small businesses can outsource for big savings.
Plan Your Outsourcing Projects
There are many new tools that make DIY tech projects possible, but that doesn’t mean you should always take those projects on yourself. Sometimes you just need a professional to manage the tasks. So start by making a list of tech projects you need to get done and identify which ones you can realistically do with your team and which need to be outsourced. Then, locate the best companies or freelancers to complete the tasks for you. It may cost a little more, but you’ll get a great product in less time, which means you can be up and running faster! To ensure that the outsourcing partnership aligns with your business objectives, establish clear communication channels and set measurable goals from the outset.
Web development is something typically best left to professionals. While there are drag-and-drop website builders out there that can help you DIY a website, you’re unlikely to end up with something user-friendly, SEO-optimized, or professional-looking. A professional can help you create a tailor-made business website that can add to your credibility. Once things are up and running, your internal team can handle most of the updates and maintenance by utilizing their training and free online sources. Outsourcing the initial heavy lifting of website development ensures a robust foundation that’s designed for scalability and future integrations.
Apps can be game-changers for small businesses. Again, you could build your own mobile app in-house – whether by yourself or by putting together an IT team like all the bigger organizations do. Outsourcing is far cheaper, though, and gives you access to domain experts for much cheaper. Moreover, you’ll be more likely to receive an app on time at reduced rates. By choosing to outsource, small businesses can take advantage of cutting-edge technology and industry best practices without incurring the costs associated with full-time development staff.
Omnichannel Customer Journey
These days, customers interact (and transact) with a business through several channels – mobile, website, SMS, social media, phone, in-person, and more. Sometimes, they start a journey on one channel and end it on another. Again, to create such a uniform journey across so many channels requires the integration of several technologies – mobile apps, live chat, video calling, and social media, for instance. Most small businesses simply don’t have the resources to do something like this in-house.
If there’s one area where you shouldn’t cut corners, it’s cybersecurity. According to the FSB, hackers love small businesses because they have weak security systems, lax internal regulations, and a lot of valuable information to steal. You’re very likely to get hacked if you don’t have the latest protection. Outsourcing your cybersecurity requirement can help you get the protection you need at an affordable price. Additionally, outsourced cybersecurity firms often provide ongoing monitoring and support, a service that is invaluable in the fast-paced world of cyber threats.
General IT Support
External IT support for general problems or requirements is both affordable and effective. Some examples of general IT tasks include setting up a local network, backing up files, installing operating systems, configuring your software, setting up apps, and troubleshooting general problems. If you’re hiring a managed service provider (MSP), you must check their credentials first.
Tech Apps are Always an Option
Outsourcing isn’t your only option – there are apps that you could use instead. For instance, instead of working with web developers, you could use a DIY website builder. Instead of creating an omnichannel journey from scratch, you could use an omnichannel app. Note that while such solutions work, they tend to be less powerful and not as tailored to your business.
DIY Some Marketing Tasks Instead of Outsourcing
Basic marketing is something you or your employees can do yourself using tech tools. For example, instead of hiring someone for designing an interactive material for engagement, you can use an online brochure maker instead. It’ll give you access to thousands of professionally-designed templates that you can customize to your needs. Brochure templates allow you to add text, change the font or colors, and even add your own photos.
Get Your Tech Projects Done Right the First Time
Outsourcing can help you become a tech-ready, tech-enabled business affordably. It can benefit your reputation, customers, and, ultimately, your bottom line. For the best results, run an ROI analysis for anything you outsource. You should move forward only when the numbers balance out in your favor.