Your major job as an owner, executive or manager is to decide how to delegate responsibility. You have more opportunity than ever to reach experienced contractors through the much expanded third party gig economy. Alternatively, you can more easily find and hire dedicated in house specialists using social media, temp agencies and the small word-of-mouth circles that you have as an international seller.
As you expand into a proper international retail presence, there will be many administrative and logistical aspects of your business that are best left to dedicated professionals. The challenges with Importer of Record (IOR) and getting your equipment into each country is unique. Aligning with a partner who works in these regions every day brings far greater scale.
Let's take a look at some of the best reasons to outsource your international retail IT project management.
1. Higher Specialization
Depending on the scale and speed of your expansion, you may need IT teams from different locations around the world. Why remain stuck with a general crew when you can hire specialized expertise for each and every move? There are very few, if any, in-house options that are as good as location specific, fully dedicated teams of specialists that focus on a specific type of IT project management. Use this expertise.
2. Better Cash Flow
Regardless of the size of your business, getting a better margin on your products will always win the day. As international retail becomes more competitive, budgets will be getting smaller while ROI will need to improve.
You may eventually find your company searching through the couches to pay full time IT retail specialists. When you outsource, you pay only for what you need when you need it. You can also earmark resources that would normally go to overhead, insurance and training into other, more profitable ventures. Consider a variable cost model, so you can expand costs with your growth.
3. Higher Level of Expertise
Project management is a knowledge area that is highly specialized by definition. International retail IT project management specialists are not retail project management specialists, nor are they IT project management specialists, nor are they international project management generalists. The entire string applies, and this focus on international retail IT project management helps to ensure your ROI when hiring them.
It’s always best to have a somewhat disinterested third party when it comes to tough decisions. Internal staff can quickly become yes men embroiled in internal office politics. You’ll have no such problem with an outsourced project management team. Instead of wondering whether your IT staff is brown-nosing, you can look directly to their projections and deliverables. They will also be much quicker to tell you if high ranking staff are overlooking an important business requirement or regulation.
5. Clear Focus
An outsourced project management team can more easily find new opportunities for business through a clear focus on a goal. For example, are you in the IT field services business, or the retail analytics business? As long as internal senior management can let go and trust the findings of the third party team, specialists with a singular vision will shorten the time frame between idea and execution for difficult ideas.
6. Internal Focus
If you partition the more difficult parts of international retail IT project management to your third party partners, you’ll give your full time staff the time they need to focus on their core competencies. Not only do you increase the ROI for your IT, but you also increase the ROI in other aspects of your business. Your staff gets a morale boost as well, because they know they will not be expected to stay late and research esoteric IT jargon because there is no one else to do the work.
These are just some of the reasons to outsource your international retail IT project management. Take some time to carefully consider whether it’s the right decision for your business.