You cannot outsource a problem, not invest deeply in fixing the problem in conjunction with your outsourcer and then expect that the problem will just magically disappear. Successful outsourcing relationships require hard work and there is no shortcut to success.
your outsourcing relationship successful?
- Be clear on what outcome your are expecting. A good way to frame this is to define which level or levels in the hierarchy of needs you expect the outsourcing relationship to fulfill. Often this will be the bottom 2 levels of the hierarchy, systems reliability and cost effectiveness.
- Define success measures for the outsourcer that are relevant to that level of the hierarchy of needs and ensure that success measures are defined for all persistent needs represented in the balanced scorecard.
- Provide active management and leadership to the relationship just as you would for an internal direct report. Active management should include performance reviews and joint continuous improvement aimed at achieving the level of process maturity required to produce the outcomes wanted.
- If you have not currently achieved the level in the hierarchy that you expect your outsourcer to provide then allow a reasonable amount of time for your outsourcer to build to that goal and provide the resource and support they will need to aid them on the journey.
If you do these things you can build your way into a successful outsourcing relationship. Of course, if you do these things your could also get your own internal team fit. If you are prepared to do the hard work you have a real choice and it is always good to have a real choice.
Back to Atlanta, after training for about 4 months I successfully completed the Peachtree Road Race. I really enjoyed the run and got a massive sense of achievement as I crossed the finish line and received my much coveted finishers t-shirt. In fact I liked it so much my wife and I decided to continue training and take on the Atlanta half marathon but that’s another story.