With so many businesses exploring offshore Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) programs, it’s more important than ever to ensure that the knowledge and information that you provide is shared in an optimal way…
Knowledge sharing is the process by which you communicate information, learnings, process and practice with your employees, both in-house and remote, enabling them to integrate fully and successfully into your business. It is an absolutely critical component to allowing your personnel to realise their fullest potential, mitigating teething issues, confusion and a general lack of productivity.
Allocating and dispersing the appropriate information through to your workforce is a specialty of our hammerjack team, especially within this post-pandemic environment that finds 67% of surveyed workers operating sometimes, or always, from home – as compared to 42% prior. Our hybrid, tailored, staff management model has been designed specifically to address a number of these common knowledge-sharing mistakes. It involves seamless coordination between our expert team of onshore staff, collaborating and managing the flow of information and knowledge through to our offshore specialist professionals in the Philippines.
It is the kind of synergy between off and on-shore team members that so many outsource service providers simply do not offer or consider, to the absolute detriment of their clients and workers alike. Without careful collaboration and coordination, you simply cannot extract the maximum amount of productivity and value from your business process outsourcing program. So, let’s discuss a few common mistakes to avoid when knowledge sharing with offshore personnel.
Mistake #1: Trying to Absorb The Knowledge Sharing Load In-House
We’ve seen a number of Australian businesses try to incorporate the management, on-boarding and knowledge sharing processes for new or offshore staff into their existing team operations to reduce overheads. It makes sense in theory, it’s just a matter of execution. They’re enthusiastic about trying to assist their new offshore team members, they perhaps just underestimate the resources required to pull off the job. In such a scenario there is often a shortfall of input, guidance or assistance from the outsourcing service provider who locates the offshore staff for you. They simply put them in touch with your business and walk away – a set and forget style of service.
In our considerable experience of offshore outsourcing, whilst you might feel as though you’re creating bottom-line cost savings through keeping everything in-house, the lack of clarity and productivity that this method creates can cause some painful headaches in the long run. It’s slightly like paying lip-service to the problem. It is a serious juggle for existing onshore staff, already coping with their own significant workloads, clients and KPI’s, to also dedicate the appropriate time towards sharing all of the appropriate skills, knowledge and information with any offshore team members. It likely isn’t going to happen the right way – even with the best intentions in the world.
When team members aren’t receiving the appropriate feed of updated and collated information and knowledge, then you won’t be able to get the very best out of them. It’s not their fault – all they might need is the right information, organised in the appropriate manner, to create a sense of confidence and belonging within your business. Without this transfer of knowledge, an imagined saving can transform into a budgetary black hole of unproductivity and confusion. This is the telling difference that engaging with an expert offshore staffing provider, such as hammerjack, allows – we maintain that flow of knowledge on behalf of our clients, creating space for the existing team to focus and for the new team members to thrive. Whilst other outsourcing solutions businesses might simply put a backside in a chair, we want to ensure that they create real value for your operations.
Mistake #2 – Missing The Opportunity to Be Proactive
For many new owners it’s understandably a large ask to consider the knowledge sharing process to any extent at all when on-boarding and managing new team members – a variation of the “she’ll be right” mentality. The regular operations need to keep ticking, and it slips through the back-office cracks as a perceived matter of non-urgency. As mentioned above, without the appropriate time and effort invested in these team members, they’ll never live up to any rigorous expectations. However, you might not even have considered some of the other associated costs that accompany this lack of proactivity and forward thinking.
It’s crucial to remember that knowledge flows in both directions. It is not only an outflow of information from your small business, as you might imagine it to be. When you open up these essential pathways between your core team and offshore experts, in collaboration with an offshore staff management provider such as hammerjack, you not only share your inside knowledge with them – you stand to learn from any and all of their professional experiences as well. New team members bring all assortment of skills and experiences to your operation, and giving them the oxygen to be able to share such knowledge might transform the way that you do business.
Getting on the front foot with regards to your knowledge sharing is imperative to engaging in knowledge sharing the right way, creating that two-way flow of information and skills. Ideally, as mentioned above, you should also recognise that without an outsourced team management service such as hammerjack, you’re equally unable to fully realise the benefits of that process, even with the intention of being proactive. It’s about matching the mentality – a desire to bring staff into your business in the most effective way possible – with the appropriate tools for the job, namely our experienced and expert onshore hammerjack staff management team members.
Mistake #3 – A Lack of Cohesive Knowledge Sharing Strategy
What we want to avoid is the haphazard and the disorganised. There is little value in dumping huge reams of hoarded infodocs and procedural guidelines on someone’s desk to read when they can eke out a minute of spare time. That’s not a strategy, and certainly no way to ensure that the process will turn out successfully. Whilst you might feel as though you’re providing team members with the information that they need, it’s not helpful unless it’s collated in a way designed to help them understand. The chances of them not engaging in the process, therefore, skyrocket. If there’s an absence of structure and strategy to the flow of information, how can you be sure that any of it is actually going to sink in?
The easiest way to mitigate this significant issue is to defer to your offshore staff management partner – a team such as ours at hammerjack. Our experience in enacting knowledge sharing between different teams gives us the inside track on how to gather, collate and disseminate the appropriate knowledge for each particular role within your business seamlessly. It prevents the need for our partner businesses to create knowledge-sharing strategies and logistics on the fly – a pathway that often ends in hazard and disappointment.
There are a few key points to consider as you’re gathering the relevant information to disperse amongst particular offshore services personnel. Any shared knowledge ought to be collaborative, easy to find, and updatable or adaptable as new learnings and pieces of information make their way through the pipeline. Ideally it should all be centrally, permanently, locatable on a business server or cloud storage, meaning that any applicable team members have instantaneous access as they need it. Creating easily accessible resources allows such staff to potentially answer their own questions before they bring them to you and the rest of the core business team.
Consider all of the applicable documents, guidelines, style guides, API documents and other such material that need to be dispersed through to various staff members during particular phases of the business. There can sometimes be an almost overwhelming amount of information to sort through, also often out of date and rambling. Creating a strategy encompasses not only how things are stored, but which documents, and what procedures are in place to keep them relevant, clean, well-written and easy to understand. Without such a framework, how can a business possibly hope to get every piece of crucial information across to its talent pool?
Mistake #4 – Not Leveraging the Expertise of Partners
The fact of it all is: our hybrid operating model, that provides knowledge sharing, on-boarding, and staff management services, is specifically designed to assist client businesses extract the most value possible from any offshore BPO program they engage in. Our staff management capabilities speak directly to addressing all of the problems outlined above. We have the knowledge, tools, and procedures to make any such endeavour a fruitful one, all you need to do is leverage our expertise. As experts in offshore outsourcing in Australia, let us manage the flow of information for you, so that you can still keep your eyes on the high-priority prizes for your business.
Whilst so many low-cost offshore staffing providers might be satisfied to set and forget, there is endless upside if you establish a relationship with a specialist offshore provision and management team, such as ours. The ability for Australian firms to continually and seamlessly facilitate knowledge sharing and on-boarding procedures for any offshore team members, within another time-zone, instantly heightens your chances of success in an immediate, impactful and recognisable way.
Knowledge sharing has the potential to rapidly transform the staff capabilities, sustainability and efficiency within your business operations, to the benefit of all involved. So long as you engage in the exercise with genuine enthusiasm, in combination with a desire to listen to the expert advisors guiding you, then the potential for your staff to excel has never been greater.
Speak to our expert staff today, and unlock the value of your team.