SMBs often don’t have the resources to compete with big companies, but they can focus on growth, access the right tools, and reduce costs with technology offshoring. Here’s how technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses.
- Technology offshoring helps SMBs scale, stay flexible, and lower costs.
- Some risks are involved, including cultural barriers and data sharing, but the right partnership and strategy will allow you to enjoy all the benefits.
- Implement best practices like prioritizing team communication and using the right project management tools.
It’s difficult for small or medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to compete with larger ones. They often have to work harder to provide the same results – including items like benefits packages, risk management, or best practices – due to fewer resources such as financial, staffing, and otherwise.
But SMBs are important for a healthy economy, offering jobs, services, and revenue to their local communities. One way to set themselves apart is to consider technology offshoring, which is the practice of working with an offshore team on key tech deliverables and functions and helps SMBs gain access to tools and solutions they wouldn’t otherwise have. This levels the playing field with other, bigger companies.
Learn why and how technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses.
Benefits of technology offshoring for SMBs
If you’re wondering how technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses, there are a few great reasons to consider. Here’s what to know if you’re thinking about working with an offshore team for technology needs:
- Cost savings
Business process outsourcing (BPO) helps you save money on staff costs, which include equipment, benefits, salaries, workspace, and more.
- Access to a larger talent pool
By branching out, you aren’t limited to talent that may not be as experienced or qualified.
- More scalability
Not only does outsourcing tech enable you to compete with larger companies, but it also helps you grow because you’ll be backed by the most advanced solutions and tools.
- Greater flexibility
You can free up time and focus more on your core business operations with technology in outside experts’ hands.
You will put your SMB in a better position when you have access to new technologies, handled by an experienced offshore team.
The risks of technology offshoring for SMBs
With every new venture comes both benefits and risks. What about technology offshoring? Keep these risks in mind when you’re preparing:
- Language or cultural barriers
Offshoring could mean that you’re working with a company in a country that doesn’t speak your same language or have the same work customs.
- Data security risks
It’s important to work with a reputable organization for offshoring, as your business will likely have to share sensitive information – which could become a risk if not handled properly.
- Quality control issues
You won’t be overseeing an in-office team with offshoring, so it may be harder to control quality and performance.
- Time zone differences
Lastly, working with a team that’s in a completely different time zone can be a challenge for some companies, especially for deadlines and communication.
Offshoring does have its risks, but these concerns can be addressed for a successful work relationship with the right plan and partnership.
Factors to consider when choosing an offshoring destination
So, how can technology offshoring help SMBs compete with larger businesses? How do you avoid some of those risks and plan your SMB’s offshoring approach the right way? It first takes understanding the best locations for potential companies:
- Consider factors like geopolitical stability and government policies and regulations.
- Make sure there isn’t anything concerning about working with a company in the country you choose. Are there laws that you can’t comply with? Look especially closely at tax or financial laws.
- Another factor to consider is how the company operates. Is the infrastructure sound? What are their policies regarding remote work?
- How do they leverage technology and work as a team?
Ask when employees are available, and obtain work samples, testimonials, or reviews so you know you’ll be getting quality work. Adhering to best working practices can boost your working relationship.
Best practices for managing an offshore team
Managing a fully remote team brings a few additional challenges compared to managing in-office employees. Addressing them upfront and being mindful can help everyone succeed and ensure technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses.
Follow these best practices when managing an offshore team:
1. Prioritize your communication strategy
Communication is important for any workplace, and your strategy must be especially efficient and effective for remote, offshore teams. Create a strategy so all are aligned. It should include elements like:
- Platforms like Zoom and Slack for video calls and instant chats
- Set working hours, including when hours will overlap between offices
- The technologies used and who will use them
Communication with offshore teams is made easier with the right technology. Make sure you prioritize tools that are reasonable for all to use and rely on.
2. Choose the right project management tools
One of those key technologies mentioned above will be for project management. Many platforms give you and the team the ability to instantly collaborate on projects and documents and share information. Consider your team and your operations’ needs when selecting the project management tool that will be cost-effective and accommodating. Ask for feedback from the team when trying out these technologies.
3. Educate on cultural awareness
Your local team and the offshore team may have different ways of doing things because of company culture or just culture in general. Educate your in-house and offshore teams on any customs or preferences they need to know about so that expectations make sense. These can be sensitive topics, so approach discussions with transparency and an open, accepting mind.
4. Track metrics for evaluation
Understanding performance will be key in how technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses, so craft a plan for tracking performance metrics and other data. Use a platform that can do this for you. If you hire an offshore call center team, for example, be sure to track metrics such as response time, length of calls, customer satisfaction, average time in queue, and cost per call, among other details.
Common misconceptions about technology offshoring
Offshoring technology functions can bring organizations a host of benefits, which is key to how technology offshoring can help SMBs compete with larger businesses. Outsourcing a virtual assistant is a great example, as you’ll have someone taking administrative tasks off your plate, and you can rely on tools to assign projects and communicate.
Some companies may not take the leap due to common misconceptions about risks or downsides, however.
- Some people think technology offshoring is only beneficial to really large corporations. The fact is, offshoring can benefit companies of all sizes.
- Another misconception is that outsourcing to other countries creates job losses in your home country. This isn’t necessarily true, especially because offshoring can help a company grow and scale, so they’re able to expand their home workforce in the long run.
- Finally, many organizations may avoid technology offshoring because they think it’s only for low-skilled work. However, these teams can provide expertise and experience that you may have trouble finding locally.
Technology offshoring has risks, such as data security or cultural barriers, but the benefits for SMBs likely outweigh any downsides. Your business saves on staffing and technology costs, and you can rest assured that key functions are in expert hands.
When you’re ready to explore how technology offshoring can help SMBs (like yours) compete with larger businesses, the team at DOXA is ready to assist you. We are a BPO firm that can help you build the right global team for your needs, whether you need long-term hires or just temporary help.
Contact DOXA to set up a consultation.