So you’ve decided to you’re ready to outsource but how do you set up your business for outsourcing so that you can avoid giving up and just deciding it’s easier to do it yourself? Great question!
You might think that you need to have everything set up and schmick, but you really don’t.
Start small and simple.
You don’t have to overcomplicate it. The basics will get you by so that you can hand over the task for completion. Aim to improve your processes in the backend as you go and grow. It really doesn’t have to be the full package before you start outsourcing (especially if taking time out to get all of your processes set up isn’t going to happen any time soon).
I’m just going take a quick detour about finding your VA. Don’t forget to identify the skills that they need for the tasks you need them to do, source the best ones in your budget, and interview them, so that you’re confident they understand what you need.
You can also give them a sample task, so that you’re confident they’re capable of doing the job.
If you’re not sure what kind of tasks to outsource, then I recommend that you start with a small operational and repetitive task that you know really well.
Make sure it has a clear start and finish, and that it’s procedural (ie not a strategic task, or one that can only be done by you).
Again – remember to start with one. Don’t get stuck by feeling like you have to do it all – or that it has to be perfect.
I’ve said it before – no system is ever perfect the first time. It evolved, requires testing and tweaking, so just start!
How to set up your business for outsourcing
There are 2 key elements you need to set up your business for outsourcing.
#1 Document the process
The first element is the WHAT of the task.
If you’re starting small, (and listening!) you can document the process by creating some dot points of the steps to take.
I usually add a supporting ‘how-to’ video that talks through the process as well. (I like Zoom or Loom for this)
If you’re doing the process on your own anyway, you may as well record yourself doing it!
It can be handy to have a checklist, but for small tasks it may not be necessary.
You can also compile a list of resources/ programs/ logins or passwords, brand guidelines etc required to complete the task.
Set up a Google Folder of processes and videos that you can add to as you start to build your systems, and hand over more – so that you have more time to spend as the CEO!
#2 Manage the Task
The second element is the structure. This provides the framework for you to set up the task, track it and manage it.
I prefer Asana for this.
It’s the perfect tool for service providers to get everything out of your head and put it in one place. You can manage your business operations and your clients using Asana.
In Asana, in the project you keep your VA tasks, you can
- Create the task
- Assign it to your VA
- provide a link to the GoogleDoc
- Provide a link to the how-to video
- Set the due date
- Set it to recur each week/month
- Provide any additional instructions
- Provide clear instructions for your VA to let you know when it’s complete.
- Give your VA clear feedback about what you loved, and what they might need to look out for next time
(Your VA is learning, and so are you, so there will always be opportunities for them to improve with good feedback, and for you to improve with clear instructions)
Once you have this structure set up, you can see that this template will be really simple to build on, and add more tasks.
Creating this structure for managing the tasks, and your VA is SO important, and one that I see missed, or not used effectively.
Done well, it can really make a difference with when you’re working out how to set up your business for outsourcing.
Your next steps:
- Select a task, and document the process (with video too)
- Set up Asana with a VA project, create the task with the steps above
- Communicate clearly with your VA
If you want to get more information on how to get started with outsourcing, so that you can spend more time working as the CEO with freedom and flexibility, download the Ready To Scale Checklist here. There’s a whole section on outsourcing!