Why It’s Important to Strategically Outsource Certain Parts of Your Online Business

When eCommerce company owners are asked why it is important to strategically outsource business processes elements of an online enterprise, they generally cite cost-efficiency and rapid scalability as the two priorities to the decision. Online outsourcing is fast becoming one of the most accessed segments of the business process outsourcing (BPO) market. The transition of the online economy to one of granular relationships illustrates the shift to consultancy and third-party providers of everything from professional assistant services, to IT administration.

The Benefits of BPO for Online Companies

The creation of a BPO segment about ten years ago amid the emergence of a wide variety of outsourcing options, has extended the notion of consulting to a more diversified milieu of pay-per-use and temporary contract services. Scalability has also convinced that more than one BPO provider relationship may be the solution to the cost of internal operations. If IT administration, payment gateway infrastructure and support, call center operations, data entry services, tech support, analytics reporting, and paycheck processing, are core operations within a single eCommerce, online outsourcing of some or all of these tasks to online BPO outsourcing firms is possible.

In the past decade, top outsourcing sites generated in USD $500m. In 2014, it is expected that one year of BPO performance will match this figure. The exponential growth of online outsourcing is partly attributed to the recovery from the global economic downturn of 2008. Since the crisis, eCommerce companies have progressively outsourced more of their total operations capacity. Of this productivity, a significant portion is assumed by BPO firms. There is strong indication that online companies will continue to be some of the most reliant on outsourcing, as well as the providers of such resources.

Online outsourcing has forged new channels of BPO opportunities as service contractor focus on niche markets to increase prices. International wage rates have something to do with this decision, as labor in some regions can cost upwards of 70 per cent of total revenues. Global expertise is the payoff for eCommerce companies looking to enter foreign markets. If a company contracts with a BPO firm in a foreign market to manage marketing or other localization elements of a entry, it will be far easier and cost effective than hiring internal talent.

Online Outsourcing Challenges

The challenge of online outsourcing is that control over operations is not 100 per cent. If operations tasks have been reduced, or at least streamlined in response to the integration of external BPO, the management of those relationships adds an extra layer to operations and contract oversight.

When an online business contracts with a BPO service provider, they automatically lose direct control over quality assurance. Quality control of processes post-delivery requires institution of an alternate system of audit, to ensure that documentation, record, products, and services are accounted for according to internal company policy, regulatory compliance and conditions of resale if applicable.

Ethical considerations on contract with outsourcing firms also influence the style and dynamic of a BPO workflow. In an effort to achieve greater transparency, many eCommerce companies are requesting information about staff qualifications, work samples and third party customer feedback about the service provider prior to agreement. With so much to offer the online business marketplace, the future of BPO outsourcing to eCommerce is nothing short of certain profits.