What is Outsourcing?

In the past when you asked someone what outsourcing was, they would probably tell you something regarding sending work to be done overseas to an individual or company that would do that work dirt cheap. We can all picture calling a North American company for support and end up speaking to someone half way around the world that doesn’t speak English well enough to help us with our problem. Although that is a form of outsourcing and can be extremely frustrating, that’s not what I mean when I talk about small/home business and outsourcing.

Outsourcing for a small business owner is handing over some of your business tasks to someone who has the competence and experience to handle them for you. This gives you more time to focus on other, more important (marketing/planning) and/or enjoyable parts of your business. But, that’s not all.

Here’s part of the definition of outsourcing from Wikipedia:

“Outsourcing involves the transfer of the management and/or day-to-day execution of an entire business function to an external service provider.”

Outsourcing is generally done with an independent contractor (usually another business owner specializing in the tasks you need completed) versus hiring an employee. By hiring a contractor (IC) you, as a business owner, save tons of time and money. You don’t have to worry about paying costs such as taxes, insurance, sick time or vacation time. You also don’t have to dish out money for office space, equipment, energy costs, software, training, etc. You pay the person you are outsourcing the work to for the work they do. That’s it!

Most of these contractors run their own business which means the items they need in order to complete the job are most likely already a part of their business. Whether that’s software, equipment, training, or something else, you are sure to find someone who knows what they are doing and can complete your tasks very efficiently and to your standards. Online you’ll find many of these contractors go by the term virtual assistant or VA. A virtual assistant is just what its name implies, an individual who assists others from a virtual location.

Look for more topics on getting serious with outsourcing in the coming weeks. We’ll talk about why outsourcing can be a small business owner’s most important business builder, what kind of tasks can be outsourced and tips for making your outsourcing experience a positive one.

Alice Seba

Alice Seba earns a full-time online income as an entrepreneur and loves to help others achieve the same. With a focus onusing content to create relationships, loyalty and results from the written word, she co-owns both a ghostwriting service and a private label content business. To get more tips for your content marketing, visit Contentrix.com - your free resource with plenty of tips and strategies.


  1. For a great read on outsourcing both globally and domestically, I recommend Thomas Friedman’s “The World is Flat.” It gives an excellent overview on the impact of innovation in the realm of outsourcing.

  2. Gee, thanks! This is very informative, straight forward talk about outsourcing. I wonder if you have list of company that pay well on their outsourcing. I’m very interested in working on outsourcing because you can work at home.

  3. Yes outsourcing has changes drastically with time, and I agree with you that outsourcing can save the small business owners lot of money with hardware, software and workspace.

  4. Mike Collins says

    Outsourcing is still a dirty word to a lot of people who’ve lost their jobs because their employers sent their jobs overseas. But for small businesses I think outsourcing is essential. Many internet marketers are one-man shows who do everything themselves. But its a lot easier if you can leverage the skills of others. Why spend hours struggling to create an ebook cover or header image that still looks amateurish when you can outsource the job to a pro and have it done quickly and cheaply?

  5. In today’s economy one of the things I am seeing is the contract workers that a lot of big companies have been using are the first ones to go.

  6. outsourcing is a great tool to have and use, as it can be used for both online and offline businesses

  7. I think it is all about getting the best outcome. I often get caught up in the challenge of learning a new skill but cost effectiveness wise i am much better outsourcing. I have been using Get A Freelancer for a few years now and find it great value and a great source of talent from all over the world, sometimes even just around the corner.