26 mins read time

Offshore Staffing And The Future Of A Globalized Workforce, With Derek Gallimore

EPISODE SUMMARY

On this episode of the Virtual Frontier, we have Derek Gallimore. Derek is the Founder of the Outsource Accelerator, the world’s leading independent platform of information and advisory for stuff outsourcing to the Philippines. We talked about what defines outsourcing in the 21st century and how small and medium-sized companies can adapt for a future of a globalized workforce without boundaries.

EPISODE NOTES

Manuel and Derek had a  discussion about the future of a globalized workforce, and how the perspective on outsourcing is shifting over the last years, due to the constant technology advancements. Outsourcing staff and working with distributed teams is nothing new at all. Big enterprises are using this way to get work done since decades.

  • Why most small and medium-sized businesses are still struggling to recognize the big advantages that a globalized teams can bring to table?
  • What are the key factors to have productive outsourcing?
  • What you should definitively avoid when outsourcing or working with distributed virtual teams?

Listen to this new episode and find out.

Links and hints:

If you want see how outsourcing works at excellence, please visit the site of Derek’s company Outsource Accelerator.

One important aspect of successful outsourcing and distribute teams is clarity about processes. See the extensive documentation Derek and his team have brought together.

You can learn more about Flash Hub and Virtual Teams as a service at Flashhub.io

Follow us on facebook and engage on our daily discussions.

Connect with us on LinkedIN

Give us your feedback and ask us anything related to our shows or guests. Just drop us a message on events@brightsolutions.de.

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Listen to the rest of the episodes of the Virtual Frontier on our blog.


Chris Reeves

Hello and welcome to the virtual frontier, the podcast about virtual teams created by  a virtual team. I’m Chris and I’m part of the team here at flash Hub. On today’s episode, we have Derek Gallimore. Derek is the founder and CEO of the outsource accelerator. Derek and Manuel talked about offshore staffing and the future of a globalized workforce. So here is Episode 19 of the Virtual Frontier, featuring our guests, Derek Gallimore.

Manuel Pistner

Hello and welcome to our podcast Virtual Frontier. Today we have the episode offshore staffing and the future of a globalized workforce. We have Derek Gallimore  in our episode and Derek is the founder and CEO of the Outsource Accelerator. Derek, your business is described as the world’s leading independent source of information and advisory for stuff outsourcing to the Philippines. So let’s start to get the basics right. Let’s tell us something about you and specifically about what is outsourcing?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, absolutely. First of all, thank you so much for having me on your show. And as always, I’m certainly excited to to speak about this topic. So, yeah, do you want me to dominate, define sort of outsourcing as as as I see it?

Manuel Pistner

yeah, because basically people think about outsourcing, okay, I have some amount of work, I hand it over to somebody, they do it and hand it over to me and I don’t care about this outsourcing company or people and they usually think it’s very, yeah, it’s not the way we work. Its intransparent  people we don’t know. So but what does it mean to you?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, absolutely. And I think outsourcing for better or worse is a is a big broad umbrella term, and it covers a huge array of different options, different types of working, and different structures. And I say for better or worse because I think that outsourcing the term itself has a lot of negative connotation with it. And, you know, I think, obviously, you share the same industry as me, I think we have a lot of work ahead of us to to sort of really open people’s minds and hearts to the potential of of outsourcing or offshoring. So I suppose the the part of outsourcing  that I focus on is really more staff augmentation. And it is about offshoring those staff. So for all intents and purposes, these are still your staff. They’re your team. They’re a part of your company and buy into your values and your processes. And  you as the business owner or the manager, manage the people manage their operations and manage their outputs. The only really significant difference is that instead of them sitting beside you in your office, they are aggregated in an office in the Philippines. And you know, the outsourcing supplier or ourselves, provides the facilities a great facilities also employs them so they’re, they’re legally employed. They have all the government contributions, all of the health care, but for all intents and purposes, then, they are your staff working towards your mission.

Manuel Pistner

I see. Okay, that’s a huge difference from what I described. Because what you said is that you, you build a system where you can access people that live in the Philippines, but make them part of your company. You can manage them by yourself, they will be part of your culture, instead of having like an account manager that has people behind and then yes, some  intransparent things happen without you being able to control them. So that you can’t really influence the result and you just have to trust this single person, the single point of failure. Instead, what you do is give people access to, yeah,  another part of the world. In your case, it’s the Philippines, where you have really great talent and then make these people an integrated part of your organization, right.

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, absolutely. You know, we represent the entire outside sourcing industry in the Philippines. And it’s been going 25 years. And of course, there’s a lot of different business models within the industry. The original outsourcing was that full service BPO as I think that you’ve alluded to, but now that is, you know, the enterprise businesses, big international conglomerates are still using those full service options. But Germany for the small and medium sized businesses in the world, they are leaning more towards the staff augmentation staff leasing model that we generally promote as well.

Manuel Pistner

Because this also supports the Agile transformation that almost every business is heading to, right. If you don’t have access to your people, and you can’t work directly with them, then you can’t use agile methods to like improve your business continuously with those smart people.

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, absolutely. And that is I don’t want to be, you know, I’m relatively agnostic. I believe that this form of offshore staffing works well. But also, you know, it’s like a tool kit. If you need some project work done, then artwork might be a really good option. And of course, you know, most small and medium sized businesses, they will typically go to an accountant, go to a law firm that has all different types of project based work, you know, and of course IT, getting websites built. All of this is just a part of the different optionalities for hiring people in different set of senses and getting work done ultimately.

Manuel Pistner

Okay. And let me know how did all this start? I mean, how or what was the moment when you first thought about building an organization that helps others to outsource?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, so my, my previous business was, I’ve always been entrepreneurial, and my Previous business was in hotels and hospitality. We had a service department company in central London. And because of hospitality, there was a need for 24/7  customer support because of course,  people are in your hotel 24 seven, and I realized that wasn’t financially viable in central London. So someone suggested that I went to the Philippines in 2011, I got my first employee in the Philippines, and I very quickly found that they were incredibly effective at a great price and then built that office up to about 70 staff. We started with customer service, but then very quickly, we went up the value  ladder, and you know, we were having the entire organization effectively built and managed from the Philippines. So once I moved on from that business. You know, I had been spent considerable amount of time in the Philippines I was very aware of the outsourcing industry and saw the value the incredible value of this offshore staffing model can bring to businesses in the West. Now, there’s a lot of outsourcing suppliers in the world, but there’s no aggregator platform and there’s no marketplace that helps small and medium sized businesses navigate this industry. So you know, I created Outsource Accelerator, which is that marketplace. We list about 700 outsourcing suppliers. We have about 5000 articles on the website. And it’s all about educating people about what offshore staffing is how they do it, the pricing structures and then also how they find a match up with suitable suppliers

Manuel Pistner

In the past, I mean I’m in in the IT business. I started there since 2006, basically and even before that I studied computer science. And during this time I always heard about offshoring, nearshoring outsourcing and there were movements towards outsourcing, then there were movements back to insourcing. Why do you think there is always a cycle in this like, it’s like a trend, you know, then people start doing that then they have some experience they stop anything insourcing is better than they have this huge war of talent, don’t find people locally, they outsource again. Do you think it’s just a trend? or How will the future of work look like?

Derek Gallimore

In terms of a sort of macro view, I believe everything like pendulum swings, you know, you have centralization of services, then you have decentralization of services who in the in America,  you know, go Republican, and then you go Democrats. And,  I think that generally, you know, sort of something catches on. And then over a decade it swings to the extreme and then it goes back the other way. I think there are pros and cons to everything. You know, there is this sort of strictly defined outsourcing, which is effectively I think, you know, when you get someone else to manage that business, that aspect of your business for you, There are pros and cons to that, but I think has been debated for, you know, decades or centuries now, in that you can get a specialist to do it, they might be specialized at it, but then you don’t have the skills, internal, you know, and you’re reliant them on an external partner which carries its risks. So I see the the pros and cons of that. What I do see though, is a general trend towards globalization. Now 50 years ago, there was no globalization certainly at the level that we have Now, because quite simply, there wasn’t  the internet, the communications, the low cost of all of the internet and communications and the sort of technological interfaces that now allow that. So, you know, there’s always this movement between outsourcing and insourcing. But something that is progressive is this globalization. And what that brings is the opportunity. You know, previously, we were isolated to the geographic location that we were based, whether it was us or our business or our clients. And you know, you might be in a city of 1 million people. Now, you have a marketplace of about seven or 8 billion people in the world. And my sort of message and thesis is that the global  community should be sourcing from the globe, and that’s 8 billion people that can potentially do the job better than the options that you have locally. So it’s super exciting opportunity. And you know, that just leads to more opportunities as the technology and communications improved.

Manuel Pistner

While you were describing this, I had a huge smile on my face, because that’s exactly the vision that I follow. And that’s what I experienced when I had my local workforce, like two and a half years ago. And we had always too many projects or too many people and we couldn’t source new projects to earn enough money. But then one project crashed and I had the chance to either let it crash or save it. And I started with a virtual team where I got 23 people, 23 people in a single day. That saved my projects over four days. So that was the moment for me when I experienced, wow, there are more than enough people all over the world that have the time and the skills to help me with my with my situation right now. I just need to understand how I can access them how I can find them. And then, most importantly, how to manage them properly, how to delegate properly, which tools and workflows I need. So that outsourcing is not happening by accident, but follows a structure and a system. So which advice would you give to organizations that are new to outsourcing, if they want to start in the right way and avoid the most common problems?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I mean, it’s very broad. It really depends on their requirements, it depends on their firm. But generally, you know, what I would suggest is just be open minded to what opportunities and resources are out there that aren’t necessarily local to you. And just sort of be open minded that people don’t necessarily have to sit in the same office as you to be highly, you know, competent, capable, and to contribute to your business as anyone just sitting locally would do. And I think once you realize that, then you go holy hell, you know, I’ve been hiring from a pool of only 1 million people or 100,000 people, and there are 7-8 billion people out there. And there’s a lot of opportunities out there. Now, whether you choose to go down a sort of an agency route, or on Upwork, you know, gig economy kind of Route, some sort of project work or offshore staffing, staff augmentation, there’s so many different options, and we can certainly help you navigate those, but really, it’s just opening up the sort of the opportunity to explore those.

Manuel Pistner

Yeah, be be open minded. I mean, that sounds easier as it is. But if there is Such a big opportunity in the pressure increases every year. I mean pressure to redefine local talent. So what holds people back from just giving it a try?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I think, you know, culture moves slowly. And certainly people if, you know, they’re not used to working with remote teams, then, you know, there’s a sort of cultural shift needed, you instead of just sort of leaning over and telling someone how to do something, you actually have to maybe have a few more systems, you have to rely on software, you have to rely on sort of, technological interfaces a little bit more. So I think these are the kind of hurdles and then also, you know, when you talk about offshore staffing, typically, you’re going to an emerging market something like the Philippines. So on top of that, there’s all the concerns about, you know, these are these are slightly different people these this is an emerging economy is Is it safe? Is the trust there? And then how do we work with different time zones. So I think there’s just sort of, you know, gray areas, there’s uncertainty, there’s maybe a lack of, you know, clarity as to how to proceed. And it’s just really believing that it is all doable, it’s achievable. And people have been doing this now for 25 years, you’d be surprised who is doing it. And it’s really a lot easier than then you think.

Manuel Pistner

Yeah, basically, it comes to comes to the way that organizations are used to work from the past, right? Because most organizations are used to work with their stuff in a local office, and then what happens they value they value these kitchen talks and they value the personal conversations that you have In a daily basis, when you meet in the office almost accidentally, they value this more than clarity structure and a systematic approach to get work done. And from my experience, that’s why they think work has to be like this and work can’t be different. And if you tell them, okay, you can outsource your work to like the Philippines or to a virtual team spread all over the globe, then they think, Okay, this can’t work because here in our company, we work like this and this and that. And this is the only way it can work. So changing these habits, changing these belief sets and changing this culture is most likely the biggest thing. But on the other side, companies understood they need to change they have to change. And if there was a company that really wants to change, what do you think, is the first step to get a positive experience with outsourcing?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, look. You’re absolutely right. You know, I think companies are compelled to stay competitive. And you know, companies cannot stay static, they have to keep up with the competitors and they have to keep up with global and technological trends. And I think just offshore staffing is one of those things. If you want to dip your toe in, you know, I, it’s, it’s easier than you think it’s really, you know, it depends, again, depending on on the size of your firm, but just identify one role in your business that is not necessarily mission critical to your business. It’s not necessarily to technical. And also, potentially, it’s not necessarily that to client facing, okay. So, choose something that basically cannot fail is what I’m suggesting. Choose something that you are commonly doing, and you have an established process for it. Now, once you’ve identified. that  functional role very commonly, it could be a little bit of bookkeeping could be basic business administration, potentially customer service, but I would tend not to focus on that too much because that’s customer facing. Once you’ve identified that role, then you can just dip your toe in by employing someone and giving that a go, you know, you can actually even start on Upwork or something so that it’s a part time project. But effectively, it’s just familiarizing yourself with identifying the role or the function, then mapping out the process required to complete that. Then finding the resources conveying that information to the resources, getting them to do it. And then there is an iterative process of assessing what they’ve done critiquing it, and you know, just sort of generally improving the process from there. It’s super simple, I think where people sometimes fall down, or they, you know,  they basically expect too much at the beginning. Very commonly when you talk about outsourcing people choose when you say, you know, choose a role to outsource people will think of the role that they hate doing the very difficult roles and the roles that they have never managed to do before. And then they go, Okay, we’ll do this for me, because I can’t do it. And I really don’t like doing it myself. And those roles are commonly destined to fail. Because outsourcing isn’t about solving your problems. It’s not about outsourcing the problems, it’s actually about getting well established processes done more efficiently. So you know, it’s just sort of, do something easy do something that can’t fail, get experienced with that and then you can move up the value ladder and complexity ladder of different roles and process.

Manuel Pistner

That’s a very valuable advice. Yeah, really to focus on those things that can’t fail. And the things that you are really familiar with like established processes. That is a good start to get a positive experience and then grow further and further with more positive experience. I’m wondering now if you if you say, technology is a driver of outsourcing, because 50 years ago, there was simply not such an opportunity to collaborate with people from all over the world. Which tools I mean, not a specific tool, but types of tools do organizations need to implement so that a seamless cooperation and collaboration between the one local office and the outsourcing staff in the Philippines can work successfully?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I’m I’m fairly agnostic, I would suggest going as simple as you can, especially if you’re not already using a lot of different software’s and tools, then don’t introduce too many, because then it’s just going to add another layer of complexity and confusion and, stress for you, or the boss or whoever it is.< Use the most simple tools, you know, we’ve got Skype, most everyone has Skype, you’ve got Google documents that people can, you know, just write out a process. And that’s it, you know, maybe have a to do list. And just start with that, that the the key aspect is to just get the information out of out of your head into some sort of process, some sort of mapped process, which can then be transferred into the head of the other person, you know. And tools are great, but just sort of try and minimize them at the start and then you can layer on more more tools, you know, as you go sort of project management tools and different communication tools, and of course, you’ve got slack and things like that. Now, that’s not to say that this technology sort of kind of ramp up that we’ve had over the last 50 years is incredible. You know, it’s only sort of 20 years ago that, that international calls were prohibitively expensive, and then came along Skype, and you know, so it’s just really taking advantage of these incredible things. And it’s really about reducing the friction of working alongside someone, okay? That’s all it is. It’s reducing the friction. If it’s a pain, to work with someone, if it’s a pain to do something, then it won’t work. So it’s just about how do you reduce that friction, establish the roles and processes as well as establish a bit of rapport with, you know, the people working together and then That’s all you need your way.

Chris Reeves

Everyone, Chris here again, we’ll get back to our conversation with Derek Gallimore. In just a minute. I want to give a quick thank you and shout out to K-Plan for the review of our show and Apple podcast. They said, If you work in or with a remote team, or interested in using virtual teams, this podcast is a must hear smiley face emoji. So thanks again, for that review K-Plan. We really really appreciate it. reviews like that really help people find our show. So if you like what you’re hearing, please head over to your favorite podcast app and leave us a You, you just might be featured right here in this spot on a future episode. Now back to our conversation with Derek Gallimore.

Manuel Pistner

Yeah, that’s absolutely reasonable. From your, from your explanations and from your experience. How can organizations avoid the following scenario that has definitely nothing to do with the right or wrong tools. But what when I started with, like opening our organization, to distributed stuff all around the globe, basically, we use freelancers from everywhere. We experience that our local people saw while there are other people that can help me immediately whenever I need a DevOps engineer or software developer, whatever, I have this person like in a week instead of six months, then they started working with these people. But what they lack is a clear understanding of which skill this person has and which kind of work we can really delegate to this person. What happened then is that, let’s say a software developer, somebody hired a software developer to extend their capacity in the team. And then they saw while the software developer is really good, and then they started handing over other kind of work. And today, we call this role pollution. Because the person was hired as a software developer, then he was supposed to also manage his own work, then he needs to understand like user interface a little bit, and he needs to do the quality assurance of his own work instead of having a separate QA person. So his role and his skills got polluted. And this led to poor results because this person is an expert in software development, but not in management. And we had to shift this around and really got clear about the roles, the skills and our own expectations of the work that we want to get done and map this together. And then this led to a real clear picture of which kind of people we need to get, which kind of work done. How can organizations avoid this mistake?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I mean, and I think that’s a common example. And it’s one that we see too often. But sort of taking out the offshoring aspect to this, I think that is a fundamental management question that people have been sort of experiencing for decades, if not hundreds of years, you know. Some, like part of the issue there is that that when people are effective, they get more jobs given to them. So you know, if you do a really good job, then we’ll give you two jobs tomorrow. And if you do those really well then we’ll give you four jobs tomorrow. So it’s just really putting in management processes and operational processes in place so that that doesn’t happen too much. You know, and again, I think you call it sort of role pollution. But I think that very commonly distributed workforces, or remote or offshore teams can often be, can often what can often fail. And they’re wrongly sort of accused of failing, because they’re offshore or their remote. And actually, it’s potentially just the management structure in place that is causing those to fail. You know, and, and that is as much the case as businesses are tough. Running a smooth operation is tough. Managing people is tough. And then when you add another layer that those people are in a different location, it’s a little bit tougher again. So there’s a lot of factors in creating a very complex environment. And then when something goes wrong, then people can just naturally jump to conclusions, saying well, you know, This is a remote team. So that must be the problem. I think fundamentally, if you have good processes in place good systems in place, then  the fact that they’re remote or distributed doesn’t really change that much. But I Yeah, I agree with you. I absolutely see it so commonly that I call it roll creep. You know, as soon as someone gets good at something, they’re given five more tasks. And yeah, it’s, something that needs to be sort of managed within the operation.

Manuel Pistner

That requires a huge amount of self reflection of the person that delegates work right? Because whenever they start something new, and then things fail, they used to blame the new system or what they simply tried and what was new instead of reflecting on themselves and understand Okay, I, I had an excellent person, but I delegate it either in the wrong way or I delegated the wrong type of work to this person. And If they do this, then they can improve. Otherwise they would shut the door to outsourcing and never be able to access this opportunity again. So, when we look at typical organizations, I’m not just referring to Germany but to Europe or even cross the world. How many organizations do you think are really ready to outsource properly? And how to identify if my organization is really ready to outsource?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, good question. Great question. Look, I generally say that 99% of businesses can and should outsource. Even if you have a business that is very physically located like a plumber, for example, or an electrician, you know, there are still a huge amount of activities within that business, that can and should be done remotely, you know, whether it’s marketing or accounting, invoicing, bookkeeping, general administration, client follow ups, you know,  anything. All of that stuff can be done remotely and it is more efficient to do that remotely. Now, there is one aspect with you being in Germany and this is, you know, the big elephant in the room, there is a language barrier there, and, you know, and I don’t know to what degree, but this is a point of friction, okay? And,  I sort of commonly come back to the point of friction, if the friction is too high, then regardless of how much you save or the other benefits, then it’s not worth it. So people just have to sort of assess the alignment in terms of the sort of the language but beyond that, pretty much every business should look at what they can outsource what they can offshore. You know, and that that is regardless of the sector, but also regardless of the the stage of the life cycle that they’re in. So, you know, should you start offshoring when you’re a startup or a 50 year old company with 1000 people. And my answer to that is just do it now. Because if you’re if you’re hiring your first person, then it’s a great start to hire that person remotely. And set the foundations if you have 1000 staff, then start with two or three staff doing one function offshore, and then that can maybe spread to other parts of the organization. So it’s a it’s a very flexible application and model.

Manuel Pistner

Absolutely seen in the same way if you start to build your organization, based on a culture that fosters flexibility and that leverage outsourcing already, then it’s easy to scale that with the same system with outsourcing and virtual teams and the distributed workforce. If you grow a company to like 40- 50, 100 even 1000 people, and then you need to change this culture to accept outsourcing or make even outsourcing your DNA. That’s a heavy mission. That’s heavy mission for for sure.

Derek Gallimore

It is hard again, and it’s difficult to you know, even if you have 1000 people, it’s really difficult to implement a different software system and or an ERP or, you know, sort of clocking system for the staff. Everything gets very difficult to sort of change in big businesses. And you know, and this is potentially the downfall of big businesses. But certainly there’s so many upsides that it’s hard to refute.

Manuel Pistner

Yeah, so Changing. Change is always hard changing systems or tools is hard, but changing the culture I think is the hardest thing.

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, yeah, absolutely.

Manuel Pistner

Let’s let’s dive into a discussion of local workforce. I mean, you also you connect to local workforces, right you have a local organization. And then you have the team in the Philippines and somehow they are connected.

Manuel Pistner

While we have a completely virtual organization distributed all over the globe. We  even want to get rid of our office so there is no physical limitation or restriction, no office so just virtually, globally, digital. Where do you see the differences?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, look, I it’s horses for courses, I think there’s there’s different options. I think there are pros and cons to  every model out there. You know, there is of course, Automatic, which is Matt Mullenweg company that runs WordPress, that is sort of I think most famously the probably the most prominent distributed company with about 1000 staff, I believe. They have never had an office. You know,  and it works for them. And of course, they’re building a very successful company. So, I think the assumption is that people that have, you know, multi international offices, they’re generally a huge conglomerate. And then people sort of say, well, we don’t have the sophistication to work with people in different locations. But you know, you only need to look at a small coffee shop, you know. And if if they have two branches of coffee shops, then they are fundamentally, you know, working as a distributed team. And they have two coffee shops in the same town, but different parts of the town, they then have to figure out processes, procedures for aligning the culture of those two staff teams. And this is all that you have to do within a business, you know. How do we keep people aligned? How do we tell them what they need to do? How do they feel a part of one culture, one business? You know, and how do we how do we sort of execute this efficiently and effectively, so it’s not as complicated as people sort of tend to,  lean towards.

Manuel Pistner

Okay, yeah, that sounds really, that sounds to me like or let me rephrase it. If you have a local team, is it required to have this local team because leads to better work results or is it Just a social benefit for people that like to work with other people around.

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, a little bit of everything, isn’t it? I mean, look, personally, I think that there is a certain higher level of efficiency if people connect together. You know, and  that’s why we sort of suggest to have the model of you have your local team, and then you have another team sitting in the Philippines and they all go to the office, they all turn up at the same time. They have the huddles, and the meetings and things like that. And I see an advantage to that. But equally, you know, I see the arguments for fully distributed teams, fully independent location, independent teams. So yeah, there’s there’s a lot of different options here. And I don’t think any one of them is right, any one of them is wrong, but certainly that the sort of optionality is expanding.

Manuel Pistner

Do you clients usually meet their offshore stuff? personally? I mean,

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I mean, you know, it depends. Some of them might just have one or two people and you know, then they might visit sort of two or three years later. But some of them are pretty proactive. They might even come before they build a team. And some of them come every six months, every three months. You know, it depends on how engaged they are. But generally, it adds incredible sort of fidelity to the experience when you’re talking to people over Skype or Zoom and, you know, you sort of get to know them, you chat with them, you’re texting them and blah, blah, blah, you’re emailing them, you get to know people. But it’s not until you actually visit the site, see them all hanging together, see them doing the work, see them going for their lunch break, see them chatting to each other, see them turn up, see them tired. See them happy. That is Really, you know, sort of gives you the full picture in high fidelity. And then you realize that, you know, these aren’t just an offshore team. This isn’t just outsource people, but they’re actually people. And, you know, they’ve all got their own families, they’ve got got their own career aspirations. They’re excited, they’re sad, and it sort of adds this extra level of depth to the business relationship. And then people are like, you know, wow, this is this is incredible. And generally, once people have visited, it’s, it’s it’s a completely different beast. It’s, it’s, it’s a different experience. And generally wants people have visited, you know, they might have two staff, five staff, 10 staff,  they want to 10 x by the time that they leave, because they’re so convinced  by the model.

Manuel Pistner

Absolutely agree. This is exactly my experience. So what I realized it’s not. It’s not that you have to sit in the same office to get work done. But you have to meet in person, so that you really see and connect on a human level on an emotional level. And this connection lasts over even, yeah, 2,3,6, 8, 12 months. So we repeat our team meetings where we invite our virtual staff to one local physical point, wherever it is in the world, so that we can connect on an emotional basis on a human basis, and simply share some experience with each other. So from  my perspective, it’s not required to sit in an office to get work done. But it is required to keep people connected to the mission to the vision to the values of the company to connect physically, at least once a year. So this is how, how we do it. And from my understanding is what you described, right?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, I absolutely agree.

Manuel Pistner

Now if you if your business continues to grow over the next, let’s say five years. Which vision Do you follow,  and how will this impact the economy or businesses that do not do outsourcing today?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, so look, we have written a white paper on this. We did some research and there’s about 50 million small and medium sized businesses in the in the high cost English speaking world. And if you look at the big international conglomerates, the enterprise, the fortune 500. Nintyfive percent of those businesses outsource. If you compare it to the 50 million small and medium sized businesses in the world, around about 0.5% of those business Businesses outsource. Okay, so you’ve got this, this skewed distribution, where basically every big business outsources, and no small businesses outsource. And the reason for that is 20 years ago, it was available to big business, it was not available to small business because of the cost of the technology, the communications, the scale that you needed to do it to make it cost efficient. Now, it is cost efficient, but people aren’t quite aware of it. They’re not quite comfortable with it. But I believe over the next 10 to 20 years, it will become ubiquitous.  Everyone will offshore or have a remote team in some respect. So I suggest that over the next sort of 10 to 20 years, there will be another 50 million jobs, at least that will be offshored or outsource. It’s a huge shift that’s about to happen. And it’s moving more towards that globalized, single globalized marketplace, whether it’s in terms of consumption or whether it’s in terms of production. And  it’s, it’s a good thing for the world. There’s a lot of fear about this, that it might take jobs, but basically is moving further towards one completely globalized networked marketplace. And that means more prosperity, more opportunities for all of the people within that globalized marketplace.

Manuel Pistner

I really love this vision of globalized marketplace where you can hire people, wherever they are, whenever you need them. You can scale on demand. Yeah, that’s that’s also the vision I am working and living for every day. I think there is a long way to go especially when I see how companies think work and Yeah especially think about offshoring, nearshoring, outsourcing virtual teams, etc. Because they always fear that they lose control that I think it’s a far away. But as pressure is increasing every month to find really talented local people and the war of talent is increasing dramatically, especially if you want to hire locally, then there’s simply no other way then yeah, open your borders and being open minded and try to access this knowledge that you can access that is available all around the globe. So now we come already to the end of this show. Is there some, some three points that you want to give to our audience so that they can start outsourcing and benefit from that by today?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, absolutely. Look, point one. Just open your mind. To this opportunity and explore it, you owe it to your company to stay competitive and cost efficient. So, just basically explore outsourcing or offshoring. Number two would be just find a low risk, low cost way of dipping your toe in and trying this, okay for your company, you’ve got to commit to it. Otherwise, if you’re not committed, then you know just nothing will happen. But just try a small project. Try one role and, and explore it because what you learn through doing is significantly greater than then sort of listening to a podcast or reading a book. And then the third one is, you know, don’t expect too much too quickly. Really just treat it like employment. And, you know, for the first month, it’ll be a little bit rocky for the second month. Things will start  to get on track, but there will be disappointments. But then the third month, things will start to settle down just like any normal employment, sort of relationship or environment. And once you harness, you know, offshoring or or global sourcing, then it is an incredible opportunity and competitive advantage for your company.

Manuel Pistner

And I think it’s worth always keeping in mind, if you’re offshore, if you outsource, if you leverage freelancers for virtual teams, always keep in mind these are also human beings, not machines. They are not god they make mistakes, and they heavily depend on what you delegate to them. So I think this is also one important thing, at least from my learnings, and which aligns with what you said. Don’t expect too much too fast. You’re still hiring people. Yeah, yeah, and thanks a lot. for being on the show and for all your valuable insights, where can people reach out to you?

Derek Gallimore

Yeah, thank you so much. Just go to the website, which is outsourceaccelerator.com. There’s a huge amount of information there. We have toolkits and that you can download or reach out to me direct, which is Derek@outsourceaccelerator.com

Manuel Pistner

Okay, thank you very much, then I wish you a happy scaling. And thanks for being on our show.

Derek Gallimore

Thank you so much.

Chris Reeves

I’d like to thank our guest  Derek Gallimore, for joining us today. You can find out more about Derek and the outsource accelerator at outsource accelerator.com. You can subscribe to the Virtual Frontiers here on Apple podcast, Google Play, Stitcher or anywhere else podcasts are found. And while you’re there, please leave us a review. The views help people find our podcast. And don’t forget, your review could be featured on a future episode, just like K-Plan was earlier. If you want to learn more about virtual teams as a service, visit flashhub.io. On behalf of the team here at Flash Hub, I’d like to thank you for listening. So until next episode, keep exploring new frontiers.

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