Finding the Right Outsource Company for Your Sales department
Have you been considering outsourcing your sales function lately, but you’re not quite sure how to go about it?
There are many different reasons to outsource your sales function, such as:
- Reduced costs.
- Time saving.
- Improved service quality.
- Effective customer profiling and proven results.
Regardless of your reasons to outsource part or all of your sales department, finding the right company to partner with you is extremely important. You will need a partner that understands your company, culture, values and goals.
The very first step in choosing the right outsourcing partner is to conduct some research. Do a little bit of “stalking” on potential partners to find out:
- Whether their mission and value statements align to yours.
- Whether their customers give good feedback.
- Which clients they have worked with.
- How they conduct their business.
- What their financial status looks like. You want to conduct a risk assessment on the outsourcing partner as it will give you an insight on whether they are able to deliver the services required.
- Whether the directors listed are credible. Evaluate their standing and market reputation.
By conducting research on potential partners you can eliminate those who are not a good fit for you and avoid working with a partner who does not have your best interest at heart.
One of the most important criteria for choosing an outsourcing partner is their reliability. Of course, reliability cannot be measured offhand, but thanks to the increasing amount of information available on the internet you can now measure a company’s reliability by:
- Checking their website for the list of companies they have already serviced and the number of years they have been in operation.
- Checking complaint websites such as “Hello Peter” to see if any complaint has been laid against the company.
- Conducting a search on the company to find out what people are saying about them.
Requesting the potential outsourcing partner to send you contactable references will not help you because anybody can create false references. Rather use the three methods above to ascertain the reliability of the outsourcing partner.
When choosing an outsourcing partner, ideally the size of your project should match the size of the outsourcing company. If not, you could be choosing a partner that cannot handle the project.
What I mean by this is that if your outsourcing partner is a small business they might not be able to deliver on your requirements, and conversely, if they are too big compared to your company they might not be able to give you the necessary attention, and you might just be another number in their books. The choice is yours, but make sure to take this into account.
Not only is communication essential, but the lack of it can break any business relationship. Therefore there needs to be a mutual understanding on the communication methods used during the project. Consider the following:
- Time-zones. If you’re outsourcing internationally make sure that you understand the time-zone differences and that you choose a communication method that works for both of you.
- Language barriers are one of the most common problems in communication. Choose a partner that speaks the same language as you.
- Think about how the team will be available. Will it be via email, Skype or phone? Who will be the main point of contact? Choose the best method for communication.
- Another common problem with outsourcing internationally is culture. Consider what points of contention may arise as a result of cultural differences and possible misunderstandings.
- Think about the availability of the outsourcing staff. Do you need staff available after work hours and does the potential outsourcing partner have the capacity to offer that?