If you are already overloaded and overwhelmed and need to outsource this fast outsourcing recipe is for you.
This plan will take you 2 hours if you already have the information available, allow up to 6 hours if you are starting from ground zero.
Designed for hands-on owner/managers who do the work they are about to outsource.
Ingredients for outsourcing
- 1 x goal
- 1 x measure
- 1 x flavour
- 1 x key resource
- 1 x key information
- 1 x key risk
- 1 x key skills
- 1 x budget
- 1 x deadline
- 1 x contract
Mix the ingredients for rapid outsourcing
- Take one very simple and clear goal.
- Make sure it is one goal since rapid outsourcing can go sadly wrong if you have too many goals in too little time.
- Measure how you are going to know IF this goal has been reached.
- Make sure this has a number on it since measuring things with ‘feelings’ can be tricky.
- Add your own special flavour.
- What is special about the way you work that has to be added into this mix to satisfy your taste?
- Add the resources YOU need to provide for this work to be done and get ready to mix them with your freelancer’s resources. Be clear about this since you don’t want to waste time talking to people who don’t have the basic resources to do the work.
- Blend in the key information your freelancer needs to know in order to achieve your special flavour. (Don’t forget GDPR if you caregiving access to personal data)
- Don’t overcook it.
- Peel away your key risk.
- What will happen if you don’t outsource this task?
- What can go wrong if you do? Be clear about this.
- Blend in the key skills you need your freelancer to have to make this dish succeed. If you need more than three on a rush job then you may have to rank them in order of priority as few available people will have all of them and have nothing else to do!
- Fold in your budget. Be realistic. If you want a high-quality job done by a world-class professional you are not going to get that done for a few quid. If you have a tight or almost non-existent budget you may have to really cut down on your other ingredients.
- Keep it lean. If you have a tight deadline you can’t afford a complicated requirement.
- Ask for one simple thing you can measure and brief it clearly.
- Bookmark which KoffeeKlatch contract you’ll need when you find your freelancer. You don’t want to go through all of this to find you don’t have the rights to ask your friends round to eat this dinner later on if you want to do it again!
- You will also want to make sure your freelancer isn’t cooking your recipe for other clients.
- Write all this down. You are now ready to heat this up.
Hit your network on who to outsource to
Only now are you ready to start asking for recommendations. If you hit your network before with “who is a good…” you will get random recommendations that don’t match your needs. Ask your network who they use. Be very specific. You don’t have time to be vague. Use your ingredients list to make it clear who you want to do what and by when.
Allow time to cook
Successful outsourcing needs time to season and combine. Allow enough time for your network to produce more than one person. Send them your ingredients list (your brief) and talk to them. Ask them:
- how many of these they have done
- when their next available ‘free slot’ is
- how many drafts/rounds do they normally produce
- how they normally keep in touch with clients for quality control/reviews/versions
- what their plan is if they go under a bus, get sick, and the kids get sick.
If you have a deadline you can’t work with people who don’t have a plan. Over years of working with an outsourced team we have found that working with people who not only do the job but communicate and manage their time well is really important. If you keep having to chase them all the time you will both find it stressful.
Make a decision
Make a decision. It’s perfectly OK to have more than one person you outsource too. But before you just tell them to get started you need to have a proper contract and proper data processing instructions. If you miss out on this step you can find yourself with all sorts of problems down the road from not owning copyright in what you think you bought, to tax and data security problems. You can’t rely on your freelancer to have all the right things in place.
Allow enough time for you to hand over the necessary information and resources. Make sure you also allow enough time for getting started and supervision. Our clients tell us new freelancers can need up to 4 hours for each ten hours work.
Relax or repeat?
Take the time to relax and catch up. Or if you’re really busy, pick another task and start all over again.