|WHAT IS OUTSOURCING?
Outsourcing is the process of contracting an existing business process which an organization previously performed internally to an independent organization, where the process is purchased as a service. Though this practice of purchasing a business function--instead of providing it internally--is a common feature of any modern economy, the term outsourcing became popular in America near the turn of the 21st century. An outsourcing deal may also involve transfer of the employees involved to the outsourcing business partner.
Although the definition of outsourcing includes both foreign or domestic contracting,the term is sometimes used exclusively referring to the former. The more clear term for this is offshoring, which is described as "a company taking a function out of their business and relocating it to another country," whether the external country is physically offshore or not.
The opposite of outsourcing is called insourcing, and is sometimes accomplished via vertical integration.
Two organizations may enter into a contractual agreement involving an exchange of services and payments. Outsourcing is said to help firms to perform well in their core competencies and mitigate shortage of skill or expertise in the areas where they want to outsource.
In the early 21st century businesses increasingly outsourced to suppliers outside their own country, sometimes referred to as offshoring or offshore outsourcing. Several related terms have emerged to refer to various aspects of the complex relationship between economic organizations or networks, such as nearshoring, crowdsourcing, multisourcing and strategic outsourcing.
Outsourcing can offer greater budget flexibility and control. Outsourcing lets organizations pay for only the services they need, when they need them. It also reduces the need to hire and train specialized staff, brings in fresh engineering expertise, and reduces capital and operating expenses.
One of the biggest changes in the early 21st century came from the growth of groups of people using online technologies to use outsourcing as a way to build a viable service delivery business that can be run from virtually anywhere in the world. The preferential contract rates that can be obtained by temporarily employing experts in specific areas to deliver elements of a project purely online means that there is a growing number of small businesses that operate entirely online using offshore contractors to deliver the work before repackaging it to deliver to the end user. One common area where this business model thrives is in provided website creating, analysis and marketing services. All elements can be done remotely and delivered digitally and service providers can leverage the scale and economy of outsourcing to deliver high value services at reduced end-customer prices.
The most common reasons why companies decide to outsource include cost reduction and cost savings, the ability to focus its core business, access to more knowledge, talent and experience, and increased profits.
Many companies decide to outsource because it cut costs such as labor costs, regulatory costs, and training costs. Foreign countries tend to have workers who will complete the same amount of work as in the United States, but for less than half the salary that an American employee will make . This motivates companies to outsource overseas to find foreign workers who are willing to work for these lower wages. The company can spend up to half the usual cost to train these workers to become experts in a different country . Lower regulatory costs are an addition to companies saving money when outsourcing. Comparing the costs to employing a worker in the United States to a worker in China, it is noticed that an employer in the U.S. has to pay higher taxes (social security, Medicare, safety protection (OSHA regulations) and also FICA (taxes)).
Companies are able to focus their money and resources more towards improving the core aspects of its business when outsourced. For example an insurance company may outsource its landscaping functions to a service provider that specializes in landscaping since it is irrelevant to the core operations of insurance. The landscaping is performed by an expert outsourced organization and the insurance company can focus on doing what it specializes in. This allows the outsourcing company to build onto its core functions that keep the business running smoothly. Another example is that companies and public entities such as a public school district that outsources functions, such as their payroll offices to companies like ADP or Ceridian, which specialize in payroll functions.
In the case of outsourcing, firms may find that workers in other countries can provide better customer support than their domestic counterparts. For example, an online coffee shop owner who moved his calling center to the Philippines found that his customers received better customer support from workers in this country.
Revenue and profit plays a large role in the reason for a company outsourcing. Since the costs are cheaper in different countries for a corporation to run it, as well as to train the employees, this saves the company a large sum of money. More profit comes in when the vendors are able to purchase products at a less expensive rate and continue to sell them at a reasonable price for consumers. The prices are reduced for services as well as products when purchased at a cheaper price.