Topic- The Next Big Thing in How to Motivate Your Outsourced Workforce
Outsourcing has many benefits for businesses, but especially so for small-to-midsize enterprises or SMEs. Many BPO experts advise SMEs to outsource non-core functions such as customer service, logistics, and payroll. This way, the company can free internal resources and reallocate them to aspects of the business that directly affect its profit margin.
When done properly, outsourcing can also give companies access to highly skilled professionals who can handle tasks that are crucial to the development of the business—all at the fraction of what it would originally cost. However, doing just that presents a few challenges, one of which is keeping the outsourced workforce motivated.
There are plenty of ways to go about this, since, in theory, freelancing professionals and remote employees can be pretty flexible when it comes to managing their workload and meeting deadlines. In reality, though, managing workers who don’t work in the same space as the rest of the company can be more challenging.
Common Challenges of Working with an Outsourced Workforce
Working with remote workers typically presents a few problems, and lack of motivation is the biggest of them. Employees who spend all day in front of their computer may be more tempted to question the importance of the work that they do, since they don’t exactly see its results.
They may not share the company culture and may also feel disconnected from the rest of the on-site employees. At the same time, some workers may also be tempted to procrastinate and rush through the project, which may make managers feel as if they’ve lost control over their team.
There are plenty of ways to keep a person motivated, regardless if that person is working in your office or in a remote location. Here are just a few of the tips managers can use to maintain or improve the output of their outsourced employees:
- Give them a clear objective. Make your outsourced team feel more accountable for the project by giving them a bird’s eye view of your business goals.Let them know what the business wants to achieve and emphasize the role they or their team plays in completing these goals. Also, acknowledge their contribution every time the company reaches a milestone to let them know that you appreciate their efforts.
- Communicate clearly and consistently. Effective communication should help bridge the distance between the in-house team and the outsourced workforce. It should make all workers feel that they are part of the organization and that they share its culture.A proper feedback structure should be established so everyone is in the same page and is aware if the team is doing a good job or if the management thinks they can do a better job.
- Respect their culture. Many SMEs in western countries are choosing to outsource work to the Philippines and other places that offer large savings in terms of salary and infrastructure.This means the in-house and outsourced teams need to meet halfway in terms of understanding each other’s culture. Both should look out for messages that can get lost in translation.
- Implement bonus structures. Small bonuses can be a big motivator for outsourced employees, especially if the employees are based in places where a few dollars can make a big difference.Offer a bonus for when the team exceeds their usual goals. Alternatively, you can also set extra budget for when the outsourced team needs to work overtime or take extra shifts to reach their numbers.
When an outsourced team or employee starts falling behind, try implementing or following the tips above to inspire them to keep up their performance.
This way, they can continue to make the company more profitable and on-site workers can continue to focus their efforts in in-house functions and projects.
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