Business Process Outsourcing Most Startups Should Consider

Sometimes hiring full time employees can actually slow you down and prevent your business from growing. That’s why so many startups are looking to business process outsourcing for help. Instead of bogging employees down with clerical work, outsourcing could enable your organization to grow faster by focusing it’s talent more on the core of the business.

What is business process outsourcing?

Business process outsourcing (BPO) involves contracting out certain operations and responsibilities that either take place in the back or the front office to a third party.

Responsibilities such as billing, human resources, and finance usually make up the back office or internal business functions of a company. Back office contracted work encompasses the following: purchasing, payment processing, insurance, retirement, hiring and recruiting, accounting, payroll, and general bookkeeping.

Marketing, administrative duties, as well as tech and customer support, are operations usually performed by the front office. These are more external, customer and client related business functions. Any social media, telemarketing, app testing, help desk support, customer interaction via phone or email, scheduling, and data entry that needs to be done would entail front office outsourcing.

Companies can outsource to a variety of locations.

Offshore outsourcing occurs outside a company’s country, nearshore outsourcing is in a neighboring country, and onshore outsourcing happens within one’s own country but out of the state. There are pros and cons depending on the location of the contractor. For example, a dollar can go further in other countries, but time zones and language barriers may prove problematic. 

BPO is a popular startup growth hack in that it saves valuable time and money.

Outsourcing to skilled and flexible personnel allows a burgeoning business to build a team as they need to. This is ideal when compared to time spent searching for and interviewing the right candidates. Contractors are also flexible in regards to workload.  Additionally, they are an affordable solution in terms of benefits and the costs of training as well. Obtaining remote workers through an agency means they are already qualified and require less of a financial investment. 

Both back and front office functions are integral to keeping any company running smoothly. By outsourcing business processing, tasks can be completed with the utmost speed and efficiency. 

At Number8, we help fast growing companies find quality remote workers that creatively contribute to your business’s success. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

7 Ways Chief Officers in IT Can Improve Employee Engagement

An employee can either be an IT company’s best or worst asset. For example, chief officers who do not prioritize employee engagement often find their employees lack energy and have a pattern of absenteeism. As a result, the company can suffer from high and costly turnover rates.

However, it has been shown that employees who are actively involved within their company are not only more committed to their work but more productive as well. Properly engaged employees can move a company forward by solving problems as well as growing the customer base and increasing profitability.

Here are 7 ways a chief officer in IT can help encourage their employees to feel emotionally connected to their work as well as have a stake in the well being of the company itself.

1. Provide Adequate Tools 

It’s important that employees not only have what they need to do the job, but the resources to go the extra mile as well. Too often tools and equipment are overlooked; impeding an employee’s path to success and preventing innovation within an organization. A simple and streamlined infrastructure ensures everyone is working in an environment that is efficient rather than bureaucratic.

2. Understand Their “Why”

Get to know why your employees do what they do. What motivates them to come to work everyday? Showing a genuine interest in their lives not only demonstrates respect on behalf of the organization, but it also provides valuable insight into how they will thrive most at work. For example, do they like public recognition, autonomy, responsibility, direct feedback, etc. Once you have a better understanding of your employees as people, you will find it easier to engage them in their work.

3. Cultivate the Right Atmosphere

Consider what kind of atmosphere best suits your organization’s culture, as the right one can increase performance. Don’t be afraid to reinvent the wheel by creating group work spaces or keep with traditional offices. Provide the option to have standing desks over sitting ones, background music, and flexible office hours. Catering to your employees personalities could go a long way in boosting their drive. 

4. Listen

Give employees with the opportunity to be heard. As a company, address their problems and take their ideas into consideration; even implementing them when possible. Giving employees a voice means the company can benefit from new ideas and solutions.

5. Foster Relationships

Chances are team projects will be more successful if employees enjoy working together. Encourage communication and host events where colleagues can socialize with one another, whether it be during a service project, mixer, lunch, or holiday party.

6. Continued Education 

Providing training or coaching to employees is the best way to prevent them from job hopping and even attracts new talent. Investing in your employees makes them feel valued and an important part of the team. Additional education also means the company gains more knowledge and skilled workers. 

7. Provide Incentives

Reward engagement with gifts, bonuses, and promotions. As chief officer, be clear about the company’s goals and incentivize specific behaviors that fall in line with the overall mission. If employees receive honest and open transparency about what is expected of them, they’ll have a better connection to their job and role within the organization. 

At Number8, we help CEOs and CIOs connect with IT teams that use agile development to help businesses grow. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

Atlanta is Heating Up Again Thanks to a Surge in IT Opportunities

Georgia’s capital and premier city is gaining traction after the 2008 financial recession that left the city struggling to catch up in terms of growth. Their recovery in large part is due to their increasing presence within the technology industry. Microsoft, Worldpay, and Cardlytics among other big tech companies have set up their headquarters in the area. These corporations are reaping the benefits of low operation costs, tax breaks, and investment funding. 

The Fintech Explosion

Fintech is the focus of many of Atlanta based companies, both big and small. Fintech firms support online financial services and transactions. Alternative monetary systems like Bitcoin, Apple Pay, and Square are becoming more and more popular with consumers and businesses alike. Atlanta is at the forefront of such exchange currencies and payment processing, having even been dubbed “Transaction Alley.”

Business Incubators

Top notch tech-focused research facilities like Georgia Tech and Emory University can also be credited with the tech boom. Georgia Tech’s Venture Lab for example, helps students launch their own startups and has been an instrumental support program within the tech community. As a result, young talent is growing Atlanta’s population in groves. The U.S. Census Bureau recently credited them with the third most population spike out of all the other major cities, with about 5.8 million people now residing in the sprawling city.

Tech City

Those looking to compete for software developing, programming, and computer support roles will find plenty of employment opportunities. Atlanta has always gleamed the spotlight as a business mecca and powerhouse city. However, now it’s specifically shaping up to be its own brand of Silicon Valley. What sets it apart from other successful tech based cities is an affordable housing market, historic character, and southern charm; making it an ideal landscape for encouraging tech focused innovation. 

No matter which city your company calls home, Number8 can help your business connect to top tech talent. If you want to learn more about our consulting process and why we are the perfect offshore software development company to help you reach your company’s goals, then give us a call at (502) 890-7665 today!

Distracted at Work? 3 Simple Tricks to Get You Focused

tips for focusingIn the world of technology, distractions are everywhere. Pinging notifications have a way of popping up on our phones and computers, and then an hour later, we find ourselves trying to remember what it was we were doing in the first place. However, when it comes to staying focused at work, it’s just a matter of building good habits that will stand the test of time (or at least get you to the end of the work day). Here are a few tips for focusing amidst the mountain of emails and instant messages that are sure to come your way. 

3 Tips for Focusing At Work:

  1. Set specific goals.

Part of the reason we get distracted at all at work is that we are bored or overwhelmed by the task at hand. However, knowing your priorities and setting goals can help minimize any attempt at procrastination. One of the best tips for focusing is proper goal setting. Proper goal setting works best when you break down each goal into reasonable time blocked tasks. Outlining all the steps it will take to accomplish what you want and then giving yourself a time limit for each one will help motivate you to meet your potential and fulfill your deadlines. 

Make sure the goals you set are SMART; meaning they are specific, measurable, assignable, relevant, and timely. This will ensure that you aren’t overwhelming yourself or wasting time on unattainable projects. Also try tackling the hardest tasks at the beginning of the day when you’re most energized and have loads of time ahead of you, and save the more routine things on your to do list for the end of the day when you’re brain and attention span is winding down. This way you won’t be as stressed or pushed for time on an important project.

  1. Take breaks.

It’s important to step back every once in a while, and if you do so regularly, you’ll find yourself less prone to give into the little distractions that present themselves throughout the day because you’ve already taken a break. For example, after spending a period of time hard at work, try rewarding yourself by getting up and walking around, grabbing a cup of coffee, filling up your water bottle, or even eating a mid afternoon treat. You can control the temptation to constantly check emails, social media, and text messages by setting aside a specific about of time in your workday for it. Catch up with your peers during lunch, so you don’t find yourself chitchatting at your desk instead of working. It also helps if your work space is somewhat enjoyable. So if you can, listen to background music to pump you up or keep your brain relaxed.

  1. Regulate technology.

When you’re in the office, why not make your devices work for you? Take advantage of the many apps out there that can track your time spent on certain sites, and even block those that you are prone to linger on for too long like YouTube or Facebook. Additionally, consider disabling your phone by turning it on silent, or having calls go directly to voicemail so you’re not interrupted unnecessarily during work hours. Keeping any handheld devices in your bag, or face down on your desk so you can’t see if the screen lights up, will also help prevent you from being pulled off track.

At Number8, we believe one of the keys to achieving your business’s goals is great IT that supports your company. We help businesses access great IT by connecting them with remote workers that utilize best-practice tools and processes. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!