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Why businesses should outsource their admin tasks

Written by Sarra Bejaoui on Thursday, 10 September 2020. Posted in HR, People

Cutting out distractions and prioritising has never been more important as businesses focus on the tasks that will help them survive.

Why businesses should outsource their admin tasks

Cutting out distractions and prioritising has never been more important as businesses focus on the tasks that will help them survive. As identified in Sage’s report, small to medium sized businesses in the UK spend on average 71 days per year on administrative tasks, making it one of the most time-consuming business tasks.

There are different types of administrative tasks, some are more time-consuming than others and some are more important to businesses than others - which often depends on the business, their size and their industry. Of the most common admin tasks, accounting has been identified as the most time-consuming, responsible for 20% of all time spent on admin, followed by generating invoices and taxation. 

Whilst you might recognise that you or your team are drowning in admin, considering the spend or putting forward a business case often holds you back from tackling the issue and making a change. 

To justify admin support to any leadership structure, big or small, you need to present in a business case. How is this going to help the team, the business and the bottom line? C suites are made up of creative, practical and financial thinkers, so you need justifications for all of them to achieve mutual agreements.

How much does admin cost businesses?

In their report, Sage identified that yearly accounting costs can be as high as £35,000 in the UK. This is a considerable amount for an SME to pay and businesses must consider other options on how to save money on their admin. SME businesses function on very tight budgets, even more so during these difficult times, so focusing on cost-saving solutions is essential.

As well as a monetary cost, time is a considerable factor for making this change. A staggering 50% of managers say that they don’t have time for more strategic innovations. When looking at the impact of admin, this is something that should not be ignored. 

As the Founder of SmartPA, I have spent years educating businesses on the positive impacts that outsourcing their admin has on every aspect of business. To help support your case or to understand the benefits, here are some of the top reasons why businesses should adopt an outsourcing model for their administration tasks. 

1. Save Money

Unsurprisingly, the first area that should be considered is the financial side of things; is this viable and what, if any, return can be expected from any investment?

When it comes to admin support, you need to run the numbers of how much the support will cost vs the money it might save. So, one calculation might be salary vs outsourcing costs. What is the average salary for the position you’re looking to fill and how much would a virtual PA cost for similar hours and functionality.

2. Gain Time Back

Particularly applicable to sales teams. If you are spending lots of time on sales admin, document production, meeting bookings and travel, then you need to demonstrate to your leaders that saving this time means it can be ploughed into making more sales; who can object to that?

The calculations to do here are simple: keep track of time spent on sales calls vs sales admin. Then, work out how much time you would save if the admin was outsourced and from that, how many sales could be made if you won that time back.

All you need is for more revenue to be gained from the extra time than the spend on your admin support and it’s a no brainer.

3. Increase Business Productivity

Another benefit of outsourcing your admin support is that you only pay for productive time spent. Giving you the freedom to focus on becoming a more productive business with greater output. 

Hiring a full time employee means holiday pay, coffee breaks, half days, chats in the office and so on and so forth. Don’t get me wrong, a positive work culture is so important, but if you, like so many companies, are struggling at the moment, every penny you spend on business survival and growth needs to give you maximum return. 

Outsourcing gives you access to a highly trained team, who will be experts in their sector. This support is often flexible, allowing you to fit it to suit your business needs.

With a virtual PA, you only pay for the time they are actually working, which ensures maximum productivity. If you choose the right supplier, they will feel like an extension of your team anyway, so those all-important office relationships will be maintained. 

4. Allows for more investment

A reduction in labour costs is not the only economical reason to outsource. By engaging with outsourced services, fixed costs such as utilities will become variable costs. This creates a release of capital that can be invested in other areas of your business. The ability to relocate funds in this way will make your business more attractive to investors and promote growth.

5. Competitive advantages

Businesses that do not outsource will find themselves passing on expenses, such as R&D and marketing costs, to their customers. By outsourcing, your business will have access to your suppliers’ cost structure, helping to create economies of scale. This will ultimately lead to a competitive advantage.

6. Better focus

All businesses experience strain on their resources. Most managers will feel overloaded with tasks. Outsourcing services will allow your company to focus on work that serves your customer’s needs.

If you consider the impacts of all of the above, it should be a no brainer that your team deserves and needs admin support. We at SmartPA have supported thousands of businesses across the world to do so, which has allowed them to focus on working on the business, not in it! 

About the Author

Sarra Bejaoui

Sarra Bejaoui

Sarra Bejaoui, is the Founder and Managing Director of SmartPA. As a global business leader, Sarra drives SmartPA in its quest to challenge the perception and experience of the PA and business support sector, transforming the lives of individual SmartPAs and their clients.

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