THE TOP 7 REA­SONS OUT­SOURCED TEAMS FAIL

Elite Agent - - CONTENTS - Mark En­gel­mann

THERE’S PLENTY OF IN­FOR­MA­TION AVAIL­ABLE about how great Philip­pines out­sourc­ing is and the pos­i­tive ben­e­fits it can have on your busi­ness. But out­sourc­ing suc­cesses are only half the story. Mark En­gel­mann has seen first-hand how out­sourc­ing can fail – and what you need to do to avoid the pit­falls.

We know that, anec­do­tally, across the in­dus­try 50 per cent of businesses who try out­sourc­ing fail to reap any ben­e­fits. But why does this hap­pen when so many suc­ceed?

Here are the top seven rea­sons why out­sourced teams fail:

1 SU­PER HERO NEEDED

When you start to think about the cost sav­ings as­so­ci­ated with an out­sourced team, I wouldn’t blame you for get­ting re­ally ex­cited, and for good rea­son. You can hire some­one in the Philip­pines for about 30 per cent of what it would cost you in Aus­tralia.

The trick here is not to get car­ried away by cram­ming as many un­re­lated tasks as pos­si­ble into one job de­scrip­tion. You’ll cre­ate a po­si­tion that re­quires mul­ti­ple skillsets and can only be filled by a superhero!

I like superhero movies as much as the

2 IT’S TRUE BE­CAUSE IT’S IN THE RE­SUME

Of­ten when you en­gage with an out­sourc­ing provider you can choose to par­tic­i­pate in the re­cruit­ment process. If you are faced with re­cruit­ing your own off­shore em­ployee, don’t take what’s on the re­sume as gospel. We learnt very early on that ba­sic ap­ti­tude test­ing and job-spe­cific test­ing are cru­cial in can­di­date se­lec­tion.

Af­ter work­ing with a Filipino team for some time, I’ve come to un­der­stand that they are mo­ti­vated by dif­fer­ent things. The Philip­pines is classed as a ‘de­vel­op­ing’ coun­try and as such many of the peo­ple who live there have very dif­fer­ent daily strug­gles to us in Aus­tralia. It is al­ways use­ful to keep this in mind when work­ing across bor­ders and cul­tures. next per­son, but un­for­tu­nately they are fic­ti­tious. Su­per­heroes don’t ex­ist in Aus­tralia, the Philip­pines or any­where else!

3 YES = ?

One thing Aus­tralians are well known for is be­ing blunt. The down­side is that we ex­pect every­one else to com­mu­ni­cate the same way! The sim­ple truth is not every­one does.

You would think that ‘yes’ and ‘no’ are pretty straight­for­ward, but this is not al­ways the case. In the Philip­pines, peo­ple are gen­er­ally grate­ful for a job. So if you ask your Filipino staff mem­ber if they un­der­stand some­thing they will of­ten say ‘Yes’, but not re­ally mean it; we call this the ‘pas­sive yes’. This means they do not fully un­der­stand or may have some ques­tions, but think it a poor re­flec­tion upon them­selves if they ask for help. There are two lessons in this: l Try not to ask closed ques­tions, which can be an­swered in one word l Al­ways check for un­der­stand­ing.

4 NO FEED­BACK

Dur­ing my time work­ing with cross­cul­tural teams I have learnt that Aus­tralians are gen­er­ally av­er­age peo­ple man­agers. I’ve rarely come across an Aus­tralian man­ager who has a frame­work they use when man­ag­ing teams.

In con­trast, I find Filipinos love be­ing man­aged through feed­back and KPIs. This means the idea of build­ing an off­shore team and putting it on ‘set-and-for­get’ is doomed to fail. To ad­dress this, en­sure you: l Im­ple­ment a man­age­ment frame­work that your whole Aus­tralian team un­der­stands and uses l De­velop SMART KPIs for your Philip­pines team l Check in reg­u­larly to as­sess task progress and of­fer your as­sis­tance when needed.

5 THE TIME-POOR EN­TRE­PRE­NEUR

Man­ag­ing an out­sourced team takes time. You will also need to shuf­fle some re­sources around to prop­erly in­te­grate lo­cal and out­sourced teams.

With this in mind, if you are fly­ing solo and in start-up stage you will need to find the time to man­age your out­sourced team ef­fec­tively. This may mean giv­ing away some con­trol, or hir­ing some­one in Aus­tralia to look af­ter op­er­a­tions and your out­sourced team while you grow the busi­ness.

6 TECH­NOL­OGY

Our Aus­tralian team works re­motely, and we’re all 100 per cent com­fort­able us­ing web con­fer­enc­ing to meet with each other and the Philip­pines team. It is to­day’s tech­nol­ogy that has made Philip­pines out­sourc­ing such an ef­fec­tive op­tion for businesses.

Your com­puter likely has ev­ery­thing you need to work with re­mote teams: a we­b­cam, head­set and web con­fer­enc­ing soft­ware, all of which is in­ex­pen­sive and easy to set up. From a tech point of view, the only thing stop­ping you from run­ning an off­shore team is a closed mind.

7 PROCESS

Hav­ing well-doc­u­mented pro­cesses is a must-have for build­ing an ef­fec­tive out­sourced team. That is why it is es­pe­cially im­por­tant to go with a real es­tate-fo­cused out­sourc­ing provider. Beepo al­ready have staff ready to be placed, trained in in­dus­try best-prac­tice across all ap­pro­pri­ate as­pects of prop­erty man­age­ment, sales, mar­ket­ing and ac­count­ing.

Mark En­gel­mann is co-founder and Chief of Con­tent at Beepo. He has helped hun­dreds of com­pa­nies suc­cess­fully im­ple­ment an out­sourc­ing strat­egy in their busi­ness. For more in­for­ma­tion visit beepo.com.au.

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