In the previous post of our twelve-part blog series on the Top 10 Technology Trends for advisors and their partners, we explored the seventh trend: how moving data and software to the cloud provides many benefits for advisors and their partners. The eighth trend we will discuss in this post is outsourcing.
Outsourcing is no longer a negative term associated with shipping jobs overseas. It is not something only done to replace menial manual tasks. Rather, outsourcing has become a mainstream way of getting more done with less. The outsourcing trend, thus, is the continued evolution of outsourced solutions.
There is a lot to be said for the phrase “focus on what you’re good at, and outsource the rest.” If you’re a great financial advisor, that doesn’t mean you’re a great advertising copywriter. The key to effective outsourcing is figuring out what you’re good at and what you like to do, and outsourcing the rest to others who have a specific talent as it relates to the task that needs to be completed.
Your outsourcing could actually be “insourcing”: delegating the task to someone already on your team who has the skill, the will, the time and the passion to accomplish the desired task. Assuming, however, that your task cannot be done by someone internally, then outsourcing is locating a person or persons outside your firm who are better able to perform the desired function.
There are firms that specialize in financial advisor outsourcing, which means they are staffed with experienced financial services professionals with specific talents. For example, as discussed in the post on Workflow, trend No. 6, doing it yourself can be very expensive because you’ll most likely get it wrong. Instead, you can outsource that work to professionals who cumulatively spend thousands of hours each year mapping out workflow and processes for financial services firms. Yes, the outlay of cash to pay for outsourcing can be expensive. However, compared to doing it yourself, getting it wrong, and really causing problems within your firm, the cost of outsourcing can be an incredible deal with superb ROI.
Other ways to outsource include using online services such as Guru.com and Elance.com. These services allow you to identify and engage with experts, primarily in areas like marketing, sales, website development, etc. You can outsource event planning, making phone calls . . . just about anything. There are even services that provide a virtual assistant whose job can include everything from writing letters to answering your email.