02 Mar How to Get the Buy-In For Outsourcing
So, you have a huge IT project on your plate and you’ve determined that relying solely on your in-house resources to deliver high-quality results that are on-time and on-budget isn’t going to cut it. To get the job done right the first time, you’ve decided that outsourcing is the best solution to help you achieve your objectives. So now what?
The benefits of IT or software outsourcing are numerous with immediate advantages to be gained. Outsourcing can help you stay focused on your core business, free your internal sources, control IT costs, reduce labor costs, increase efficiency and competitiveness and reduce risk—to name a few.
While all of those benefits can help increase profitability and boost the bottom line, for whatever reason outsourcing is not always warmly welcomed in the C-Suite. In fact, it is often met with resistance. But fear not. The good news is it’s possible to clear the outsourcing resistance hurdle and get your executive team engaged and involved with some careful planning and smart strategizing on your end.
It Takes a Team
Without your top stakeholders on board, the chances for your plan’s failure from the get-go far outweigh those for success. Getting the buy-in from your executive team and their on-going support is imperative to accomplishing your goals.
So how do you go about that? Here are some key steps to consider to help get the IT or software outsourcing thumbs-up from your executive team and your project off to a solid start.
- Think Like a Visionary
This is your chance to think “big picture” and focus not only on how outsourcing can benefit you, your team and your project, but how it can benefit the company as a whole.
To get your executive team on your side, you need to think like them—with a focus on the future and not just on the here and now. Before presenting your goals and the results you expect from outsourcing, you need to firmly plant your plan in their minds. How you go about that is with a value proposition—a brief and concise plan overview that captures their attention and creates an emotional response.
Think of your outsourcing plan as a brand that you’re trying to make stronger—covering why your executive team needs to consider outsourcing, how much they need outsourcing and the consequences of not outsourcing.
- Results, Results, Results
You’ve sold your executive team on your value proposition and now it’s time to get down to business. And once again, you need to get your brain in executive mindset—meaning, it’s all about the results.
Increasing profit with minimum expense is the overall goal of your executive team and showing how your outsourcing plan can achieve that is your end goal as well. Make the measurable results of your plan crystal clear and present them with total confidence.
- Back It Up
A detective needs solid evidence to prove a case and getting your executive team to buy-into your outsourcing plan is no different. Without it, your plan will undoubtedly fail.
To that end, have facts, figures, stats and case studies to back up your plan and the calculations to show the potential gains from its implementation. Proofs and numbers are hard to ignore, as is pointing out a competitor that has leveraged outsourcing and reaped its benefits.
- Do Your Homework
If you want to build confidence in your plan with your executive team, you need to show exactly how it will work, including which tasks you plan to outsource and whom you plan to outsource to. Prove that as soon as you get the go-ahead, you have the logistics and the specifics of your solution worked out and that your plan is ready to be put into action.
- Don’t Give Up: Follow-Up
If things don’t go exactly as you had hoped—getting a nay instead of a yay—all is not lost. Thank your executive team for their time and consideration and ask how you might be able to get them on board for another support or software outsourcing project. Ask what concerns they had with your plan and how you can address those for future projects.
To “get their feet in the water,” suggest a software outsourcing trial run to help them get over their fear of a long-term outsourcing commitment—one where you’ll analyze the results and provide them with ongoing insight to prove the advantages of your plan. Get them on board with this “experiment”, do it well and chances are favorable that they might jump right into the outsourcing pool.
Read more about how to plan for your development team and potentially allot for outsourcing.