Passing your spreadsheet and database needs to an external company is all too appealing when looking for quick results at low cost. But, is this economically viable or is outsourcing slowing bringing Britain to its knees? Can the US President’s passion for insourcing make Britain Great again?
Insourcing is the process of bringing operations back from an external company / country and integrating them into your company. Put simply, for anyone that knows outsourcing – it’s the opposite.
Britain spends untold billions of pounds to overseas outsourcing companies every year, with the main loser being the home-grown workforce.
UK unemployment levels remain at 7.7% according to figures released early in 2013. Many jobs that have been taken away from the British workforce include manufacturing, customer service, tech, marketing and more. Perhaps even more worrying is that over 1 million young people aged 18-24 are without employment, not to mention, in ever increasing debt from university courses.
Although the experts claim that we as a nation are moving towards the end of the recession, this does little to instill confidence in the millions of unemployed. But could this be avoided to some part by bringing jobs back home? Tasks the UK market knows how to do; maintaining a database in Access or building financial models in Excel.
The lure of outsourcing sits firmly in the corner of saving money for business. Cheaper labour costs in overseas countries means that wage bills can be cut and profits can increase.
Obama’s Big Idea
There’s a lot to be said about our friends from across the pond, and whilst Obama may not have realised it, his recent initiative could have just saved a large number of businesses here in the UK.
Early in 2012, Obama sought to tackle the issue of unemployment head on, by setting to reward businesses that opted to bring operations back home. Insourcing was born (or at least publicised) and the world was beginning to listen.
In fact, he even attempted to pass a bill which would see tax breaks for companies that adopted the insourcing initiative. Although this was ultimately unsuccessful in parliament and the bill was narrowly rejected, the idea is still going strong.
A case study: General Motors re-hires 10,000 IT professionals
While GM was one of the early adopters of outsourcing, news late in 2012 seems to be suggesting of a U-turn. Whilst manufacturing looks set to remain offshore, the company plans to bring home 10,000 IT jobs for the benefit of the US workforce. And with the help of a little training, these employees are set to flourish.
Part of GM’s insourcing plan is to open what they call innovation centres. These centres will be based across the US in areas that reflect a substantial amount of industry knowledge. That’s a no brainer right? One such centre will employ 500 people in Austin, TX, matching their skills to the relevant IT roles. Just as the best businesses match their employees skills and knowledge base to the tasks that need to be performed.
Is there a bright future for General Motors? Only time will tell if it’s the best decision for them, but it’s definitely a great move for the US unemployed.
So, what are the benefits of insourcing?
- Lower Cost. It’s true what they say. Teach a man to fish and he’ll be able to feed himself for life. Investing money into training in house can ensure that your current workforce is both upskilled and kept motivated. Both invaluable assets.
- Increased Control. Many outsourcing companies will have their own methods of working and may not be able to accommodate your ever changing needs at the drop of a hat. Keeping operations together often helps the smooth running of a company.
- Higher skilled workforce. If the General Motors case study is anything to go by, there’s a knowledgeable group of skilled unemployed people out there – just waiting for this opportunity.
- Ethics. Huge in modern day business. Customers are ever increasingly concerned with things being home grown, the supporting of relevant charities and the like. Promoting the best of British only stands to benefit early adopters to the insourcing buzz.
- Simplicity. Reinstating your IT skills within your company is logistically easier than bringing back manufacturing operations.
How could insourcing your Microsoft Office operations benefit business?
Whether you are a huge multi-national or a small to medium sized business, IT is one area that is easy to keep control of in-house. So, rather than outsource your inventory management or data analysis, why not keep complete control and look after things within your business.
Enjoy the rewards that a skilled and motivated workforce brings, all whilst keeping the home economy ticking over. University graduates are potentially a great fit for your company: bursting with knowledge, enthusiasm and willing to get stuck in, you can sleep tight knowing that you’re keeping propelling the economy along.
Financially, upskilling your entire workforce soon pays for itself. A quick brush up on Excel, Word or Access could save you thousands of pounds in the long run. Enhancing your presentation skills could be the difference between winning that tender or not. The unique pricing model of Training courses at Best STL means training can cost less than you think. And, just like your trusty Word document, we won’t let you down – with the promise of never cancelling a training course and a 98%+ satisfaction rating.
Would you consider insourcing your operations, or do the benefits of outsourcing outweigh the costs?
Obama photo courtest of The Big Story