Retail in Asia

In Markets

Why outsourcing may be better for your business in the long run

Expanding store and franchise operations into new markets, or even expanding into known markets, can present a number of challenges for the Brand Owner.

Almost without exception, these challenges and risks can be overcome by careful planning and control of the design, procurement and construction elements – whilst balancing time, cost and quality constraints.  Without an in-house team to focus on these tasks, projects may not be given the attention they deserve, often resulting in delays and increased costs.

Professional outsourcing complements your existing skill sets. Project management consultancies are engaged to supplement or integrate with an in-house team, providing essential expertise for a set period. 

Take a moment to consider some of the benefits that outsourcing can bring:

Outsourcing can add value and profitability

  • Helps reduce capital expenditure and staff costs through greater flexibility and elimination of employment and tax administration, particularly in China.
  • Enables faster mobilization to accommodate speed to market and projects demanding fast-track schedules.
  • Raises profit levels through increased productivity and identification of cost savings in the design, procurement and delivery stages of a project, whilst also leveraging the buying power of multiple sites.
  • Open competition for project work ensures Project Managers are incentivized to deliver high quality and meet your budget expectations.
  • Experienced Project Managers with wider, more diverse experience can control budgets, schedules and planning to meet your objectives.
  • A Project Manager dedicated to  proactive project planning will realize time and cost savings and achieve your set KPIs.
  • More predictable budgeting and better knowledge on the project costs as a good project manager will be able to provide budgeting based on historic cost information gathered from hundreds of similar projects.
  • Increased innovation and reduced risk mitigation – leverage the Project Manager’s experience and knowledge of the market to eliminate risks and maximise results.
  • Access latest technologies and practices, such as web based reporting and large file ‘movers’.

Providing timely expertise – don’t think your team can do it all

  • Outsourcing is ideal for a specific task for a business that does not have the time or the expertise to do it alone.
  • Outsourcing allows for flexible staffing – a consultancy can even out peaks and troughs in resource demand, which is especially beneficial in challenging economic times.
  • Outsourcing can often assist a team where the programme is already underway and not meeting targets.

Outsourcing allows you to focus on your core business

  • Removes distraction from other important business functions.
  • Increases quality service – as the Project Manager has specific goals, objectives and KPIs to meet.
  • Centralized communications provides more control and reduces errors.
  • The right Project Manager or Consultant allows you to focus on the TWO main objectives: making decisions, and making payments, let the project team manage the rest.

Outsourcing helps you to meet project and programme deadlines

  • Consultants can provide consistent technical and procedural support, saving you time and money.
  • Proactively monitoring and tracking deliverables and timelines are high priority – the project manager can provide comprehensive on-line reporting and decision making tools to expedite your project.

Meet brand guidelines and quality standards by outsourcing

  • Implementation of auditing procedures locally and regionally by your project manager will maintain brand integrity and quality standards throughout your business.
  • Outsourced Project Managers have diverse experience, understand different market culture in various countries and can advise on how this may impact your branding and retail environment.
  • A good Project Management consultancy operating across multiple markets can provide valuable insights into localizing your brand and its design guidelines to suit the different markets.

Quick tips

1.    Don’t choose a vendor based solely on price:

  • Though it might be tempting, never select a vendor based solely on price. You need to find the best fit for your company based on multiple performance indicators.
  • Overall, your Consultant or Project Manager should offer a balance of good value and quality results.
  • You may find that if you do choose the lowest bidder, your project will end up costing more as they haven’t been able to help you hit the deadlines.

2.    Outsource with specific experience:

  • Select someone with specific experience with the type of project that you’re undertaking.
  • For opening a retail store, you’ll get best results if the consultant you select has verifiable experience in the retail sector.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask them for case studies on other types of work they have done similar to your project.
  • You wouldn’t ask a plumber to fix your lights, so make sure your don’t ask one of your other consultants to do project management if they don’t have experience in it, as it will only cost you in the long run.

3.    Manage and schedule your cashflow:

  • Define a project schedule with clearly defined milestones.
  • Tie payments to the milestones and forecast your cashflow.
  • Forecast anticipated expenditure, including potentially unforeseen events based on the Project Manager’s experience.
  • Maintain visibility of your project exit cost at all times.

Outsourcing isn’t just bringing a team in to your company; it can also include having a specialized consultant work with your in-house team or staff already fulfilling the role. Outsourcing is especially good when you have an increase in workload that may not be long-term, or your brand is an entrant in a new market.  The positives your business can gain from the enthusiasm, commitment and expertise of an outsourced Project Manager far out weights the costs and negative impact on your business – should there be delays to the projects. 

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