Albert Einstein once said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results". Yet, how many of us are actually doing this all the time, without even really realizing it? Not sure, let me explain.
Many of us in managerial roles often end up doing repetitive and non-productive tasks. In other words, the required but repetitive tasks take up our available productive time. For example, many large companies who bill their client's basis their team's time spent on projects have the requirement of time sheets. Timesheets are the basis on which a project is billed so it is an essential task to be done and demands accuracy. I have come across project managers saying that timesheets are often put on the last item of the day or done 'when they have the time' and at times not done at all.
Another repetitive task is that of submitting expense claims, accurately and on time. Given the global travel that senior staff members undertake, it gets time-consuming to keep tracking all expenses and submitting them accurately on time.
Picture this scenario, one of your support staff leaves her role. From the time the vacancy is advertised to on-boarding, it takes around six months. And after all, that, what if the staff leaves? What next? You start the entire time consuming and expensive process again. Many of us in management positions end-up doing this and in worst case scenario, several times. And yet, this is a norm where we follow the herd and go through it without giving it a second thought.
Isn't this insanity? That is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results? What if you stop, take a breath and actually do something different in this process.
I meet lots of people who are stuck in that advertise–hire-train-exit-repeat cycle. When I dig a bit deeper and most often than not, I find that the position can in-fact be outsourced.
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In 2016 Deloitte's Global Outsourcing Survey found the most common reason companies outsource is a cost-cutting tool. Other reasons included improving service quality and gaining access to intellectual capital.
If non-productive roles and tasks are outsourced, the company is not stuck with having unskilled staff that they need to keep on their payroll due to the fact that the initial hiring cost was so high. Nor the company has to go through the entire advertise-hire-train-exit-repeat cycle. They do not have to pay an employee salary when they are on vacation, maternity or sick leave. So they are saving space, time and even money!
Which manager wouldn't jump at the chance of visa, medical and benefits cost disappearing? Training, on-boarding, vacation and sick pay that can be taken away? What if the position is filled by an experienced, qualified and locally based talent? Wouldn't that break the cycle of doing the same thing over and over and this time getting a different result?
The global market size of outsourcing in 2000 was US$ 45.6 Billion, this increased in 2017 to US$ 88.9 Billion and continues to rise. This only shows that companies are consistently using outsourced services to their advantage. Let me leave you with another interesting blog about which industries are really benefiting from outsourcing.