I've changed my mind on outsourcing

Associate Programs Newsletter #431

Jay Stockwell here.

Not long ago, I had almost given up on the idea of outsourcing.

I'd been trying for over 9 years and was disappointed by my experiences almost all of the time.

The quality was bad, I was getting scammed, everything took longer than anyone said and I ended up re-doing most of it myself.

That didn't stop me from trying though. I've done 155 projects via eLance and RentACoder plus lots of direct hires outside of these systems.

The projects have ranged in price from $10 right through to $5000. I've even hired full time staff out of RAC.

After doing it for over 9 years, I've learned a lot about how to choose good offshore talent. Nonetheless, I still was constantly frustrated with the results.

Here's how it normally went down:

  • I'd spend loads of time spec'ing the project so they couldn't screw it up.

  • They'd end up loosely following my spec and I'd have to spend time checking every detail (in other words they'd  screw it up).

  • I'd go back and forth with them to get it right.

  • I'd then get frustrated and just finish the thing myself.

Every now and again, I'd come across someone who was really good. They'd just nail it. However, next time I went to use them, they were so busy they either couldn't do the work in a timely fashion, or the quality level went down because they were rushing everything.

My negative experiences with outsourcing ended up driving me towards hiring locally. Unfortunately, at close to 10 times the price.

However, I knew that in order to grow our business I simply had to leverage the most important asset I have. That's my time. No matter what the cost.

If you had asked me in February this year if outsourcing was worth it, I would have said it was OK for very basic tasks. Anything more complex would end up taking about the same time at the end of the day, with frustration thrown in.

I'd almost universally say "Hire locally!"

However, more recently I've completely changed my mind. You could say that I've done a complete backflip on my opinion of outsourcing.

In April of this year, I hit gold.

Well actually, I can't claim I hit the gold. I was shown where the gold was, how to get it out of the ground, polish it and convert it into hard cash. :)

We've now got 6 full time outsourced staff and hiring more as we speak.

Here's what's different these days:

* I now hire exclusively out of one country.

* I now hire on a permanent basis. So no less than a fixed 20 hours a week. Most are full time exclusive to me.

* I now know where to find the staff and speak on their terms.

* I now know how to manage them correctly.

* The staffing pool I've found are almost unbelievably inexpensive, honest and competent. And they set their own  salary. :)

How inexpensive? Check this out.

As part of my outsourcing efforts, I'm building a team of SEO staff. Guess what we're paying for these guys?

A full time salary for most of these folks is $200 USD a month. That's only $1.25 an hour.

The amazing thing is that we pay them the salary they requested. Many times we pay them more.

I was initially uneasy about these low salaries until I understood how these compared to other jobs in their country.

For example, we pay our programmers 2-3 times the salary they would receive if they worked for a local corporation.

In fact, one of our better paid ($380 a month) SEO staff earns the same as what the average local Certified Public Accountant earns.

This isn't exploitation. They love us! :)

Man... I could rave on all day about how this has changed our business.

Not only that, what I thought would never be commercially viable is now possible. It's incredible.

If you want to get the same information I got that changed my opinion on outsourcing (and in many ways my life!) talk to Marc and Daniel from the OutsourceMethod.

They detail all the nitty gritty in their outsourcing course.

Plus, for a limited time you can get the same information I got and more for just $1 here.

I can't recommend this highly enough. When you do it right, it really can change your life.

By the way, this isn't a monthly recurring product. You pay $1 to check it out. If you like it, there is a one time fee after that.


Thought for today: Ignorance and leverage

"When you combine ignorance and leverage, you get some pretty interesting results." - Warren Buffett.


All the best

Jay Stockwell

October 8, 2009

Comments (5)

Said this on October 10, 2009 At 03:35 am
Outsourcing save time for us and can improve our work efficiency
Said this on October 11, 2009 At 04:42 pm
Any thoughts on how OursourceMethod.com compares to ReplaceMyself.com?

Said this on November 2, 2009 At 08:50 am
Great article. We both outsource and work with in-house. We have found that outsources is best used when tasks are straightforward, cut and dry. Even though you can pay as low as $1/hour, sometimes it is worse. The project can take too long, it may never get finished correctly, and you end up spending much of your own time trying to manage the project.

It does take time and it is a trial and error affair. When you DO find a person or company to outsource, it can be very beneficial. However, there's always going to be problems.
Said this on January 15, 2010 At 01:32 am
Very nice information. I agree with your outsourcing opinion.
Said this on March 14, 2010 At 11:10 pm
Very thought-provoking article. I totally agree that creating leverage by outsourcing is a necessity for a business to really advance.

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