Kate Lester, CEO of Diamond Logistics, has grown a small courier business into a multi-million-pound delivery and fulfilment network. In this blog, she shares her thoughts on how outsourcing can help you grow your business.
- Get the experts in
At home, I don’t service my boiler or car. And whilst of course I could pop open the bonnet and have a go – it’s far, far more effective to call in the specialists! Why is it any different in business?
I’ve always looked at outsourcing elements of my business – and we continue even now. We want to ensure we have the highest calibre of person working with us, whether that’s financial, IT or legal.
We look at any area of our business we’re not specifically excellent and consider how we can build the best team around us.
With our ambitious development and launch of despatchlab, we needed the very best to enhance our in-house team. The result is that we have a revolutionary platform, and we have been able to concentrate on our area of expertise: making sure our clients’ goods get delivered.
- Free up time to do the things you do well
You can’t grow if you wear all of the hats all of the time. Take a prospective client I was speaking to this week. They have ambitious plans for the fast growth of their online store; plans that require their time, energy and no doubt, late nights to execute. But they’re getting bogged down in the logistics.
This business considered streamlining their own logistics. Moving to new premises, recruiting an operations manager and recruiting a warehouse team. A hefty investment of time not to mention the financial costs of systems, utilities and moving. Plus keeping up with customer services on deliveries, particularly if their systems are fraying at the seams. Logistics is a time vampire that keeps them from focusing on the growth of their business.
You can only do so much with your time. Money can be made. Your time cannot.
We’re small business owners at heart. I get that it’s a ‘gulp’ moment when you hand over responsibility and outsource a part of your business. But where would I be if I delivered every parcel that came through our network.
You know the adage indecision is still a decision? Inaction can cost you more. And it would for this company I met. The opportunity cost – and the actual fiscal cost – will cost them hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of pounds in terms of their future growth strategy.
- Save money
We’ve found this time and time again in our business: outsourcing doesn’t mean more expensive! Let’s go back to this prospective client. We worked out with them that outsourcing their fulfilment and delivery would cost them 30 – 50% LESS than doing it themselves. (That’s without factoring in the hidden costs they no longer have to deal with such as employing all those people and managing despatching and customer services on the premises.)
So, I encourage you: if there is anything in your business that you’re not 100% brilliant at or is causing you hassle, and will limit your future plans, consider what you can outsource.
Free up your days, weeks, months and years to concentrate on doing what you love and what you are best at – and outsource the rest.