At Sharesource, we think offshoring and business process automation are effecting some of the greatest changes since the industrial revolution. The Economist recently said, “Evidence is mounting that rapid technological progress, which accounted for the long era of rapid productivity growth from the 19th century to the 1970’s, is back”.
You may be looking to offshore some work and we think its best to start with an open discussion with your managers and team.
Here are some key points you might consider in your conversation with them:
1. Work to allay fears first - the amount of negative press that has been put out there really makes everyone shudder when they hear the CEO mention offshoring. “ That’s our team gone?” “ It will be like Telstra”. If your strategy is to allow more effective use of valuable skills, then start with that. Funnily enough, not one SME client we have, has laid off staff in their offshoring process. All have realigned and changed the core work of the local team to improve customer outcomes.
2. Explain the market conditions - you may need your team to understand the reality of the new world environment. More and more companies are offshoring work. It’s a bit like “Bonds manufacturing ” but in the services industry and the reality is that despite the outcry, people still buy Bonds products. No questions asked. Your business is just coming to terms with that.Ultimately, what everyone wants to know is “what’s it in for me”.
3. The “data- entry” boring side of their work disappear - We have yet to come across a person that doesn't enjoy giving away mundane work! In the case of engineers, more time is then freed up for them to spend on more complex issues that challenge and improve their skills, (have a read of Offshoring for Professionals). But the same time-saving opportunities can be applied in any profession and we have found success across the board.
4. Your team members will learn the new skill of managing an offshore team. For a long time, it’s been pretty hard to get to a level where you are managing staff and making it happen. Offshoring is another vehicle to develop your team’s management skills.
5. They can spend more time with the customers. Not only does that help the overall business, but client knowledge is key and the best companies are fanatical about client relationships and understanding. The more your team works with clients the better they will become at keeping the client satisfied.
Finally, “Concentrating on what’s important (no data entry), managing and working with offshore teams as well as talking with clients and customers will always make you more employable in the long run”.
We conduct brainstorming session with our client's managers and teams to facilitate and ensure success. We see this as a critical part in successful implementation of an offshore process.