Outsourcing Your Business
There will come a day in your business (if it hasn't already arrived) when you realise that you only have two hands and 24 hours in a day. What I mean is you can't do everything that your business needs yourself. If you try to do everything yourself your business will at best grind to a halt, and at worst, GO UNDER. Take a look RIGHT NOW at the successful marketers around you - the millionaires, the gurus and the market leaders.
Outsourcing elements of e-learning can provide a solution to a number of infrastructure issues. Busy IT departments might not be able to add servers across all regions fast enough to meet your implementation schedule. The infrastructure might be in the middle of an upgrade and the IT department not in a position to install and support your application. You might find a Learning Management Outsourcing doesn't make bandwidth issues go away. Even though your application and content reside on third-party servers outside your infrastructure, there is no separate, direct connection between the learner and content in the end, it all comes through the infrastructure and competes for bandwidth with data from other corporate applications. Only when learners logon remotely from home, a hotel, a client site does an ASP model deliver a bandwidth advantage. In most businesses, remote learners are the exception rather than the rule, so the overall reduction in traffic is small.
A list of the most significant information technology (IT) based services 12 includes professional services such as consulting 13 , systems engineering, systems integration 14 , support 15 , outsourcing, networks 16, 17 , e-business services 18 . Similarly with the explosion of the Internet, consumer services companies have emerged. They are mostly on-line information, electronic-transactions, and electronic-business services. Amazon, eBay, and Yahoo are among the most successful service companies to achieve both growth and profitability.
Getting ready to design a business blog Creating the right design for your business blog Making blog design choices Using HTML and photos in your blog Outsourcing Web design tasks One of the most important elements in any technical project is knowing your limitations. You can learn to do most of the technical details involved in running a blog on your own, but for the more complex tasks, you may find that hiring an expert just makes more sense than trying to acquire new skills yourself. You get information in this chapter on when outsourcing makes sense.
Only way to know for certain is to have a clear, shared understanding of everything you need before going shopping. Where is your business headed What is its geographic spread Is that likely to increase as a result of mergers and acquisitions Are staffing levels likely to rise significantly Is staff turnover too high Are product cycles getting shorter Is competition heating up Is there increasing emphasis on outsourcing Cost reduction Without real insights into these kinds of questions, you're just guessing about the kind of e-learning system you need.
To use your Web site as a profit center, encourage visitors to buy some sort of product or take some sort of financial action while visiting your site. If you do not have the information technology (IT) staff to manage this yourself, Web-hosting companies are available for outsourcing. These companies allow implementation of the shopping-cart service without any additional programming needs and sometimes for as little as a few hundred dollars. You can also set up a shopping service on sites such as http www.store.yahoo.com. Monthly fees range from as little as 10 a month to over 100 a month, depending on the site and services chosen.
Whether you're planning to build your own website or outsourcing it to another web developer, it's important to have a plan. A well thought-out plan allows you to think of all the opportunities and challenges you may face when building your website. Your website will come together much faster and with fewer problems.
Whether you're outsourcing a small portion of your website, or the entire project, you can save a lot of time and money by hiring an expert. If you lack the skills or experience to develop a professional website, or just need help with a particular task, it makes more sense to use a qualified professional than to try and figure it out on your own. If you are going to outsource any of your web-related projects, I suggest following these outsourcing tips below Take advantage of eLance's free project consultation. If you're new to outsourcing web projects recruit the help of an expert to help you get started.
Be part of the internal value chain of a company. Porter's original work considered both the internal value chain and the external value chain or network. Since the 1980s there has been a tremendous increase in outsourcing of both core value-chain activities and support activities. As companies outsource more and more activities, management of the links between the company and its partners becomes more important. Deise et al. (2000) describe value network management as Electronic communications have facilitated this shift to outsourcing, enabling the transfer of information necessary to create, manage and monitor partnerships. These links are not necessarily mediated directly through the company, but can take place through intermediaries known as value-chain integrators or directly between partners. In addition to changes in the efficiency of value-chain activities, electronic commerce also has implications for whether these activities are achieved under external control or internal...
European fast-fashion retailers have thus far expanded cautiously in the United States (Zara has only 32 stores stateside). But the threat has U.S. clothing retailers rethinking the models they have relied on for years. According to one analyst, the industry may soon experience a reversal from outsourcing to China to Made in the USA
A focus on the future Readers want to get a glimpse of the future, so give it to them. When you ask questions about the history of a specific process or practice (for example, outsourcing), also include questions about the respondent's plans for the future (you might ask whether the respondent plans to spend more, less, or the same funds on outsourcing next year).
Ideally, the help desk will be dedicated to e-learning, although in some circumstances it can make sense to share an existing help desk with IT, Human Resources, or Knowledge Management. Outsourcing the help desk has advantages there are no infrastructure issues to contend with and it might make it easier to provide full-time support. If you're delivering e-learning across time zones or have staff who work flexible hours, you need to think carefully about when support will be available. Global organizations need to decide whether to have a single help desk location operating 24 7 or whether to have a help desk located in each region, for example, one for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, one for the Americas, and one for Asia-Pacific. With a little planning, you can cover the globe with just three help desks and without subjecting help staff to particularly unsocial hours.
In 2003, Boeing beat Airbus and won a 4 billion contract with Air Tran Airways, to supply at least 60 jet planes. The same year, Airbus signed a 20 billion deal with NATO, its largest contract so far in Airbus history. In January 2003, IBM finalized a 5 billion 7-year outsourcing agreement with JP Morgan Chase, its largest-ever contract. In April HP signed a 3 billion outsourcing deal with Procter & Gamble. Here are some examples of recent mega-deals for high-tech products or services. The sheer size of those contracts underlines the importance of the capacity of some successful hightech firms to sell complex and strategic solutions to some very large customers.
Interviewee presented three very different websites, targeted to different market segments. In case of the fourth website - nakuptesi.cz, the interviewee supplies search engine marketing management and is paid on pay per sale basis. He does not use any intermediate page but rather places the ads on search engines to link directly to the merchant. This way, the content provider actually does not need any content to use an affiliate program and acts purely as a form of online promotion outsourcing. This form of affiliate marketing has not been addressed in literature yet.
When my mother, an educator in Kentucky, started talking about such things as the outsourcing of jobs overseas, corporate ethics, owning stocks ('Did you buy Google ') and sustainability, I knew 'business' was now considered part of everyday people's domain, no matter what their occupations.And it should be, given the impact of business mismanagement and criminality on people's personal finances. In August 2004 Charney was voted Person of the Year by apparel-industry publication Counselor. The choice of Charney suggests a growing level of respect for his business practices, which have been called everything from kooky to revolutionary, and a begrudging acceptance of the man. In just seven years, he has grown his company from 50 employees to nearly 2000 and has proved that you can manufacture quality apparel without outsourcing anything. His treatment of employees is nearly enlightened, with benefits ranging from salaries that are almost double the minimum wage to classes in English as...
Digital Business is the enterprise-wide group with responsibility for all digital systems, processes, the e-agenda and business process transformation. Through outsourcing, it provides and supports centralized infrastructure services across the group and specific application services to all business units. The outcome of the E-Business project team's efforts was WebLearn, an intranet portal for all e-learning about Digital Business across the group (see Figure 19.1). In 2000, it was only a concept in 2001, WebLearn offered 200 courses in five languages and had about 15 000 registered learners who between them took about 25 000 self-paced courses. Because the skills gap was with standard business applications, learning content was licensed from generic content publishers. With the portal in place and the E-Business project team winding down, the success of WebLearn driven by a strong marketing campaign, both face-to-face and through digital delivery made people consider the potential...
The fourth driver is educating the value chain. In an enterprise built around outsourcing, it's essential that vendors are as much members of the e-learning community as staff. For e-learning to realize its potential to transform a business, BP's customers will need to become e-learners too. In the Refining and Marketing business stream, staff of independent petrol station operators BP's customers have already taken the same e-learning courses as staff of BP-run petrol stations.
Until 2000, if you asked the average person what, if anything, he or she knew about a company called Electronic Data Systems (EDS), you would probably get a blank stare. Some might associate the company with Ross Perot, the company's founder and former presidential candidate, and know that he later sold EDS to General Motors, but it is unlikely they would know anything more. Perot founded EDS in Dallas, Texas, in 1962 with the somewhat radical notion that organizations would hire an outside company to handle all of their computer operations. At the time, the word outsourcing had not even entered the business lexicon. However, the idea caught on quickly and EDS came to rule the industry it created, which was evolving beyond just computers into information technology services (ITS). EDS grew exponentially after being acquired by General Motors in 1984 and became a 14 billion giant before splitting off from the automaker in 1996 and becoming an independent company. In many ways the...
Outsourcing If companies lack internal capacity they could decide to employ a third party to manage their online access, outsourcing some or all of their Internet operations (Abdel-Malek et al, 2005). From an operational perspective, fixed-location retailers might involve a third-party distribution company to bridge the gap between the customer order and delivery to the customer.
A virtual organisation uses information and communications technology to allow it to operate without clearly defined physical boundaries between different functions. It provides customised services by outsourcing production and other functions to third parties. Virtualisation is the process whereby a company develops more of the characteristics of a virtual organisation. What are the implications for a marketing strategist of this trend towards virtualisation Initially it may appear that outsourcing does not have direct relevance to market orientation. However, an example shows the relevance. Michael Dell relates (in Magretta, 1998) that Dell does not see outsourcing as getting rid of a process that does not add value, rather it sees it as a way of 'coordinating their activity to create the most value for customers'. Dell has improved customer service by changing the way it works with both its suppliers and its distributors to build a computer to the customer's specific order within...
Partnerships in logistics are expected to grow in importance in the years ahead. Furthermore, some companies are outsourcing more and more of their logistics functions to third-party logistics providers (e.g. FedEx Logistics, Emory Global Logistics) that they believe can do the jobs more efficiently, leaving them free to focus more intensely on their core business. Finally, managers argue that integrated logistics companies understand increasingly complex logistics environments. For example, companies distributing in Europe can gain a complete pan-European distribution system without incurring the costs, delays and risks associated with setting up their own system, given the bewildering array of environmental restrictions that affect logistics - from product packaging standards, truck size and weight limits to noise and pollution controls. The purpose of external logistics partnerships and outsourcing logistics must ultimately be to improve service delivery to customers and enhance...
A recent study carried out jointly by McKinsey, the management consultancy, and the Centre for European Logistics examined logistics alliances between 50 customer companies and 20 logistics specialists across five northern European countries. The study's main conclusion was that most of the companies' outsourcing of logistics activities was excessively driven by cost reduction with insufficient focus on improving service quality to customers.
The market-follower firms fall into one of three broad types. The doner closely copies the leader's products, distribution, advertising and other marketing moves. It originates nothing - it simply attempts to live off the market leader's investments. IBM's demise started after outsourcing (286 chips from Intel and the MS-DOS operating system from Microsoft) and open architecture allowed low-cost market entrants to copy its PCs.
The DTI's International benchmarking study (2004) also found size to have an effect on web site adoption, with almost 95 of large companies having active sites. It should be noted however, that in recent years, small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) have begun to take advantage of the falling costs of going online. In the UK, the rate of adoption of the Internet by SMEs is surpassing official targets and the UK government continues to invest in comprehensive programmes designed to get UK businesses online (Simpson and Docherty, 2004). Many SMEs are taking advantage of easier-to-use web applications and lower-cost outsourcing of web development and site hosting particularly to serve marketing communications objectives. Therefore, size may well continue to be a useful predictor of the level and extent of Internet adoption but as the Internet becomes more accessible a wider range of companies are looking to benefit from becoming involved with the online trading environment to serve an...
Putting together an internal team of people to help with your SEO requires you to select one or more individuals with varying proficiency in HTML writing, knowledge of CSS, data analysis, graphical design, server administration, copywriting, link building, and blogging. Although the scope of your project dictates how many people you need to fill out your team, you can always consider outsourcing one or more components of the job.
Not everyone is going to be an expert at every aspect of search-engine optimization. To take full advantage of what search-engine optimization has to offer your Web site, many skills are required. These skills include but are not limited to HTML writing, knowledge of CSS, data analysis, graphical design, server administration, copywriting, link building, blogging, and so on. Do not hesitate to put together a team of people skilled in these different areas to assist in the project. You do not need to hire a team of people to work at your side you can outsource some of the work to others through popular outsourcing Web sites such as Elance. You are sure to find that you excel at some search-engine-optimization tasks and lack the knowledge or motivation to excel in others. You may be an excellent Web designer and copywriter, but terrible at server
Consider outsourcing certain marketing endeavors such as developing, writing, and producing newsletters and Web sites. Trade services or collaborate with other consultants. For example, if you're a human resources expert and a consultant in another firm is an authority on the motion picture industry, join forces to author an article on how to motivate stressed-out creative people.
Outsourcing is now an option for virtually any activity, and survey design, development, and management are no exceptions. For a fee, you can commission a highly professional survey that requires little participation on your part. Some consultants use this option so they can focus on developing marketing programs to promote the survey, instead of dealing with the administrative details of survey preparation and analysis. Outsourcing can be costly it will depend on the scope of the survey you plan to conduct.
You can publish a zine with little cost and minimal resources. All you need to start is a computer, an e-mail program, and subscribers. At first, it will take time to build your zine, but as you progress, it will become easier. You always have the option of outsourcing some parts of the zine or the entire publication (more on this later).
Downsizing, especially in corporate media audiovisual (AV) departments, has led to much outsourcing, frequently to former employees at new one- or two-person media boutiques. Without in any way disparaging their creative abilities, their business know-how is frequently somewhat less. When working with such a boutique, make sure your working agreement states that you own all videotapes and audiotapes shot for your project, as well as everything converted to disks. After