Deciding whether or not to outsource particular tasks is one of the many important decisions both large and small companies alike have to make often. This can be a difficult decision at times but often the decision making process is greatly simplified and it becomes clear that outsourcing is the only viable option. Situations in which this may occur are when the in-house staff is not qualified for these tasks, when the in-house staff is already overburdened and when there are specific client requirements specifying certain tasks must be completed by individuals with specific qualifications. This article will address each of these situations and discuss why outsourcing becomes the only solution in each case.
The Qualification of In-house Staff
Sometimes outsourcing becomes the only option available because there are no in-house staff members qualified to perform a particular task. This often occurs when a task requires a highly specialized degree or area of expertise. This is especially problematic when the task in question is one which is extremely rare. When this is the case it does not make sense for a company to hire an employee with these capabilities when they will be rarely utilized because employees who are not productive are expensive to the company. However, if this task becomes one which is required regularly, the question of whether or not to outsource the task becomes more complicated. As this article is focusing on situations where outsourcing is the only option, we will not delve further into the factors which complicated this decision such as labor costs and increased manpower.
Smaller companies often face the problem of not having staff members qualified for particular tasks more often than larger companies. Larger companies obviously have a larger pool of employees to pull from and it is therefore much more likely for the smaller firms to have gaps in their level of expertise than it is for larger companies to have these gaps.
The Availability of In-house Staff
Sometimes outsourcing becomes the only option based on staff availability. A company may have a need for tasks to be completed rather quickly. Although it may be a task for which several in-house employees are qualified, current workloads may make it impossible for these employees to take on these tasks. When this occurs, outsourcing again becomes the only option. Company employees are often multi-tasking and may be working towards several serious deadlines at any one particular time. Management is tasked with the responsibility of doling out work to lower level employees and when they feel as though their in-house staff is not able to take on more work, they often turn to outsourcing as a solution.
Workloads often become a factor in outsourcing when there are projects which are particularly time sensitive in nature. Employees and employers often have to prioritize the multiple tasks they are managing but there are times when a number of projects or tasks become urgent simultaneously and when this happens it may become difficult to complete all of these tasks with only the assistance of the in-house staff.
Sometimes outsourcing becomes the only option as a result of client requirements. Depending on the complexity of a task, a client may require the consultant firm tasked with completing a task to have the task performed by an individual with specific qualifications. These qualifications may include specific training in certain types of software, exact education requirements or previous work experiences. Companies who do not have in-house employees who meet these specific requirements have no choice but to outsource the task to a qualified individual.
When this is an isolated incident, companies often outsource the task and do not make efforts to attempt to hire a full time employee with these qualifications. This is a wise decision especially when the client requirements require an expert in a particular niche of the software industry. Employing an employee of this caliber would likely be rather expensive especially if he would rarely be called upon to utilize his advanced skills.