As a small business owner, you are always looking for opportunities to grow your business, often needing to bring on new staff to help with expansion and growth plans.
The question for many small business owners is whether to hire employees or outsource. How to staff your business depends greatly on the needs, timing, and strengths of your business.
As seen in the recent post, Get Up and Grow: The Small Business Guide to Expansion, your ability to grow depends on smart investments in key areas of your business. Staffing is among the most critical.
Deciding to hire or outsource the work often depends on the type of work that needs to be done. To hire another full-time or part-time employee, you need to think carefully about the volume of work necessary. Will there be enough to keep the person busy full-time?
Consider whether the work for which you hire will allow you to spend time on other critical business needs. Also, think about whether the position will bring in more revenue than you are paying out in salary and benefits.
Often, the prudent choice is to think instead about outsourcing work, especially for projects which are periodic and opportunistic.
Here, for example, are a few areas that make sense to outsource:
- Basic administrative assistant duties. Today, virtual assistants can take on many of those duties that take up a great deal of time, such as setting up appointments, scheduling meetings, answering the phone and emails, and managing access to company leaders. There are services that specialize in virtual assistants while some gig job sites offer quality candidates.
- Graphic design. When you need some design, whether for business cards, posters, marketing campaigns, promotional materials, or advertising, you need a very unique skill set. Bringing on this type of employee, especially as a business is growing, may not make a lot of sense (or require enough work to justify another full-time position). Fortunately, there are both agencies and sole proprietors that can do talented work. There are also online design sites, like Fiverr and 99Designs, where freelance designers participate in contests, giving you a variety of options.
- Bookkeeping. When you are just starting, you may not need a full-blown accounting staff, but instead, a bookkeeper who can keep the books in order. You may have tried to manage the account statements and transactions yourself at first, but outsourcing this work to someone who can handle it all in a few hours makes good business sense.
- Customer support. Customers have questions and you may not always be available. However, there is often no need for a fully salaried staff member. There are companies that specialize in providing customer and technical support for smaller companies.
- Web design. Like graphic design, you may have an intermittent need for creative services but not the capacity for a full-time webmaster. Having some designers who can make the changes you need on retainer or as-needed is a more prudent move as you grow.
At Benetrends, we help businesses grow strategically while providing access to the capital that allows for growth. Our small business funding model bypasses traditional small business loan programs by leveraging existing 401(k) and IRA funds to provide valuable capital to hire new employees or otherwise expand operations. To learn more about how Benetrends can help with growth strategies for your business, schedule a consultation.