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As Professional Services Firms Struggle with Staffing, Is Outsourcing the Answer?

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As law and other professional services firms today struggle with staffing issues due to the ‘Great Resignation’ and deal with employees working from home and/or hybrid, it’s no wonder that outsourcing has been increasing almost exponentially over the last few years. Additionally, if prior trends are an indicator, outsourcing is likely to increase significantly if we enter a recession – and with good reason:

Outsourcing is a cost-effective solution that provides firms flexibility and the ability to tap into resources with experience and expertise when there are challenges finding candidates with the requisite experience, or when tight budgets prevent hiring full-time or part-time internal staff.

As an additional benefit, outsourced staffing often costs less than bringing on internal employees, when all expenses associated with hiring are considered.

But, some firms may still have questions about whether outsourcing is right for them. CLIENTSFirst Consulting has been providing outsourced CRM, eMarketing and Data Quality staff for law and other Professional Services firms for more than a decade, here are some questions we hear most often:

Question #1 – What types of positions are suitable for outsourcing?  

  • Outsourcing can be an excellent option for staffing key marketing technology roles including CRM management, eMarketing administration, data quality/data stewarding, experience management and website administration, among others.

Question #2 – Do outsourced staff perform as well as in-house staff?

  • Many outsourcing providers who focus on marketing technology have highly skilled staff who can provide singular focus on your CRM, eMarketing and data quality responsibilities, unlike in-house team members who are often busy balancing other tasks and juggling multiple responsibilities. Additionally, typical turnover rates among in-house staff can be high, leading to increased need to train – and retrain – new employees regularly, which takes time and can be expensive.

Question #3 – Is outsourcing more expensive that keeping functions in-house?

  • Research indicates many organizations actually realize cost advantages from the reduced expenses associated with staffing and hiring in-house employees when all costs are considered including salary, taxes, office space, parking, insurance and other benefits, not to mention (again) the time and effort spent hiring, onboarding managing and supervising the internal staff.

Question #4 – Can outsourced team members perform well without daily quality control and visibility? 

  • In the past, firms often had concerns about having individuals working outside the hallowed halls of the office. But no longer. Work from home is now the norm. And while supervision is critical to success of even remote teams, a good outsourcing provider should take the time to get to know your firm and business and learn about your roles and responsibilities so that they can assist your internal team with staff supervision, allowing management to have a sense of control, while freeing up your internal staff for more strategic priorities. In addition, your provider should define goals and metrics for success and ensure you receive regular reports on progress and productivity. Ultimately, the outsourced team should become a valuable extension of your in-house team, working together to produce superior results.

Question #5 – Are all outsourcing providers the same?

  • Absolutely not. Smart marketers understand that real benefit often comes from hiring the most knowledgeable, experienced teams of professionals because these organizations and individuals can add real value and share information, ideas and best practices for success, allowing the organization to reap real rewards in terms of efficiency and effectiveness.

With all these advantages, it’s no wonder that outsourcing is increasing. Now more than ever, smart marketers are turning to outsourcing to remedy staffing challenges with CRM, data quality, eMarketing and other marketing technology positions.

With some of the top questions answered, is your firm ready to consider outsourcing? Get in touch with the CLIENTSFirst Consulting team to see how we can help.

Still have some questions? Reach out to us and we’ll be happy to answer them and share information, ideas and best practices for success.

For more than 10 years, the team at CLIENTSFirst Consulting has been helping professional services firms and other organizations successfully select and implement CRM and eMarketing systems and improve Data Quality to maximize value, adoption and return on investment. If you need help achieving CRM Success, contact us at 404-249-9914 or info@clientsfirstconsulting.com.

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