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If you are going contract outsourcing services, there are a few things to consider when it comes to language barriers and how that might impact your budget. When looking for the right outsourcing partner for your company and projects, you will come across options that have teams that are fluent in English, and those that are not fluent in English. There are unique advantages and disadvantages for each outsourcing solution.
Using a Fluent English Speaking Contractor or Company
If you are looking for outsourcing management that can offer you a fluent English speaker is in your country or time zone, you have to be prepared that your outsourcing cost savings won’t be as much. Hiring an individual or team that has to fit into language and location requirements is going to reduce your selection and drive up prices.
Things to Consider:
- Do you need to work with someone that can have a live, two-way conversation with you or your team? If so, the extra cost will be worth it since you’ll be able to determine when to talk based on when it is convenient for you.
- Do you or anyone on your team speak a language that is native to the outsourcing partner that you are considering? If not, and if you still feel like English is going to be the best form of communicating, you’ll be better off spending the extra money.
- Even if you find an English speaking contact, you will also want to confirm their working hours. Try to work with someone that can overlap their hours with your office hours.
Using a Non-Fluent English Speaking Contractor or Company
If you don’t have a language or time zone preference, you can keep your outsourcing price as low as possible by working with non-fluent English companies or contractors. Most of the time, you’ll still be able to find someone that can handle basic English communication, such as understanding enough to know what you are asking for and being able to write simple responses.
Things to Consider:
- Do you or anyone on your team speak a language that is native to the outsourcing partner that you are considering? If so, can that person(s) take on a project management role to help facilitate communications?
- While you might save on costs by outsourcing someone that isn’t fluent in English, you have to remember that managing them will take more of your time. You’ll have to be very careful and efficient when you do communication to minimize miscommunications.
- Not all outsourced projects are the same, or have the same scope. You might consider using a higher cost option for outsourcing development or design projects, and save the lower cost option for outsourcing things like data mining.
These two options aren’t your only options, though! Most companies that are considering an outsourcing contract actually find that they are more successful when they use a combination of both of these options. Our recommendation is that your outsourcing costs include using a company that can provide a project manager that is fluent in English, even if the rest of team is not. That was, the project manager can easily and clearly communicate with you and your team and can also deliver your requirements to their team using the team’s native language.
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