Free Download...Here is a free E-book from Baker Mckenzie which covers the legal ramifications of outsourcing

In a lot of jurisdictions is not necessarily always simple to outsource jobs. The transfer of jobs when to a  BPO  company sometimes creates the potential for legal challenges.

The challenges can be somewhat tricky to ascertain when the executive tasked with the outsourcing project resides in another country.

Most countries simply do not have laws dealing  specifically with outsourcing related such common labor laws are being used to safeguard the process. One of the mandatory considerations any business therefor has to consider is if the process of outsourcing will violate applicable labor or other laws.

Baker McKenzie has created an Ebook which is available for free download which addresses a variety of questions related to outsourcing. They currently allow for a free, no registration download at the link shown below.

They presumably created the book to drum up some business. Never the less, credit is due where credit is due.  It is a great resource. It covers 19 jurisdictions (countries) and therefor  has a broad based appeal.

If you like to learn a bit more about what the document entails please visit their designated page (Baker McKenzie) explaining the Ebook in a bit more detail

Can Inside Sales Be Outsourced ?

I was confronted with this question the other day. I usually do not entertain sales related outsourcing questions, mainly because it is a field I ordinarily do not deal with.

After contemplating the question though I wanted to provide my view on the subject.

There are quite a few things to consider when outsourcing sales.
Sales is first and foremost the first point of contact between a company and what might be the next customer. Clearly...first impressions count...and Sales is what makes the first impression.

Hence the question of outsourcing sales should not be taken up does require some hard thinking as to what the KPI's  (Key Performance Indicators) are which need to be hit.

The very first step in the process should be to conduct your needs and define the KPI's. In order to do so the following should be asked:

Why do you feel the need to outsource sales ?

Potential reasons can be:

  • You want to rapidly increase sales and/or  meet demand spikes
  • The company lacks the infrastructure to increase sales (either technically or resource wise). 
  • Company wants to focus your internal resources on operations and rid yourself of the sales process
  • Elimination or reduction in staff turnover 
  • Lack of Senior Sales management which can drive the sales process internally
  • Reduce costs associated with the sales process
  • There might be other factors to consider unique to your business, identify them here.

After a self examination which addresses all the weaknesses and objectives you want your external sales team to address and/or rectify you will need to find the right partner for your outsourced sales process.

 The sales partner is tasked to be your brand ambassador....he/she will be the very first contact any potential customer will have with your business. As such proper selection is key to make the venture successful.

In the analysis of whether or not your potential Sales Partner suits your needs use the afore mentioned Key Performance Indicators to conduct the review.

Questions which need to be answered are:

  • Does the Sales Partner have related industry experience ?
  • If so, what was their documented success, track record working for companies like yours?
  • Will there be a learning curve , and if yes, how steep will it be ?
  • Do the sales people posses the right skill sets to level with your customers ?
  • Can the Sales Organization be up-sized (or downsized) if and when needed?
  • Do they have experience with your target audience ? (B2B or B2C, industry experience?)
  • How does the Sales Partner structure its reporting to the company ?
  • Does the Reporting Structure suggest that there is a willingness to be accountable for failures ?
  • Consider the costs. Actual deployment costs as well as human capital costs within your organization.
  • Once again, there might be questions unique to your company, make sure you address them

If the above questions are answered to your satisfaction you might want to consider the idea of outsourcing Inside Sales. A good option to branch out into Outsourcing Sales is the deployment of a Hybrid Model.  A lot of organizations run such a hybrid model whereby some sales is  being outsourced and then bench-marked against the performance of the In House team.

A Hybrid approach is often times the best solution to start the process of outsourcing. If done right  it might foster competition and makes the entire sales team (Inside and Outside) more productive.

At the end of the day the decision is just not about dollars and cents. Sales is the driver of any business and having an organization that can be authentic in conveying a message is often times the most important part of the sales process.

Only if and when a business feels that it will not loose its authenticity vis a vis a customer the decision to outsource sales should be made.

Did McDonalds just exchange 70 In House Accounting Staff with H1-B workers ?

Outsourcing takes form in many different ways. Most often the task is outsourced to companies which have workers in their facilities which are located in India, Philippines or any  other outsourcing destination.

Sometimes though the outsourcing does happen within the country.

One  solution which is frequently employed (some people might say "abused") to cut salaries is to engage  an outsourcing company which takes over the business process and provides domestic personnel to perform the job requirements.

There is nothing wrong with that practice on the surface. What makes it problematic is that the main users of H1-B visas are companies which provide consulting services which are priced cheaper than what corporations pay their own workers.  Effectively the companies are building a workforce using H1-B workers to provide  the same service cheaper than what it would cost the US corporation to get the job done with In House staff.  

The H1-B program does not allow the loss of jobs (substitution) to a H1-B worker. Unfortunately though there  is no safeguard to prevent the contractor who takes over the process to use H1-B workers.

The above is apparently exactly what McDonalds did...they hired a company in an attempt to save on their accounting costs. The company who took the job staffed the position with H1-B workers.

Article can be found here

The graphic below shows the Top 19 users of H1-B visa users in the US.