How Do You Know When It’s Time for Your Funeral Home to Outsource?
Posted August 12, 2020
6 min read
Outsourcing allows you to focus on what you, and your business, does best. When done right, outsourcing specialized functions should give you more efficiency as a business.
Let’s take a closer look at what to know about outsourcing, including when it’s time to make the decision to outsource.
How to Know When It’s Time to Outsource
If you’re considering outsourcing some facet of your business, here are 4 questions that can help guide you to make an informed, strategic decision:
1. Is it specialized work you’re looking to outsource?
Certain functions of a business lend themselves to being a fit for outsourcing. Take for example payroll processing: it’s a highly specialized function of the business that requires a keen attention to detail as well as ongoing knowledge of changing legal requirements and compliance. Currently, it also requires the ability to stay on top of changing and evolving technology such as pay cards, direct deposit, time tracking tools, and more.
It’s also very critical to your business, which may seem counter-intuitive at first to outsource. But let’s take a closer look at the benefits of outsourcing payroll in particular to see why something so essential—and so specialized—can in fact be outsourced successfully.
Your firm could hire one person to do this work, but that can bring risks to your business. When outsourcing to a company that specializes in payroll processing, you no longer have to rely on just one person for your payroll. That means you’ll have business continuity (no worrying about that one person on staff taking a vacation impacting your payroll); scalable growth if and when you bring on new staff; and the ongoing ability to easily stay on top of new technology and new regulations that impact your firm. In addition, this specialized expertise often can be hired more affordably than doing payroll in-house.
As a common—yet critical—function of the business, outsourcing payroll processing is a great example of how outsourcing can free up your time, free up your resources to focus on your business’ core competence, and it can help you plan for the future growth of your business.
2. Does the bandwidth, skillset, or resources you need fit within your core competence?
Think about the areas of expertise you require, but you don’t currently have. What would it take for you to cultivate those skills in your current staff?
Or, what would it look like to hire that talent from the outside? If that’s the direction you go, what will it take to continue to foster and develop that function and expertise within your business as you grow?
If those tasks aren’t in your funeral home’s area of expertise—or your desired area of expertise—it might be a great fit for outsourcing.
And that’s the additional benefit of outsourcing: it can give your funeral home greater access to reliable expertise that your current staff does not have, and that you don’t want to develop in them, or specifically hire for. For some firms, that kind of expertise and/or business function may include HR, aftercare, preneed marketing, website development, and content marketing, as a few examples.
3. Would outsourcing the work give you more efficiency in the coming years?
Another factor to consider is the pay-off for your outsourcing decision. Does it give you immediate relief, but it may not be so strategically sound in the coming years? Or is it something that would give you longer-term gains, even if it takes a bit of research now to select the right partner?
Take for example hiring a firm to ensure your phone is always answered. At first, you might feel the “friction” of getting your new process set up, but in the long-run, the benefits to having your phones answered at all times, and not losing any business, is key for your business.
4. How will outsourcing this type of work impact your funeral home’s culture?
What would be the outcome for your team members if you took the work outside your firm? Would they be relieved? Would they likely be more productive and successful in focusing on their strengths?
Here’s a few signs the culture may be improved if you outsourced the work:
- The outsourced company has shown evidence they are deeply committed to adding to and benefiting your team’s existing culture. If they don’t recognize their work impacts your work (and culture), proceed with caution!
- The outsourced company would provide access to technology that would make your staff’s work more efficient, streamlined, or simpler. In the example of an outsourced funeral home answering service, your team may have access to tools that can help them better serve families, or at least have back-up when needed.
- The outsourced company can provide ways to make people more collaborative or productive in their work.
Outsourcing Can Help Your Funeral Home Be As Efficient As Possible
Even though you may outsource in many areas in your personal life, when it comes to business, many owners have a difficult time making the decision about outsourcing.
That’s because often there is a false belief that outsourcing is about “losing control” on parts of the business.
To make sure you don’t “lose control” or lose visibility into what’s being done, choose a vendor that has a variety of industry references. Ask them to be open about their methodology, if and when applicable. Make sure they are open to regular meetings with you to keep you knowledgeable about their work and what they are doing on your behalf. Determine if they are going to have a dedicated account manager (or similar) who you’ll be able to have a strong, long-term relationship with.
In terms of quality control, be sure you take time to research and choose vendors carefully. Again, this is where strong references from past and current clients will be worth the effort as you research partners to work with. Make sure any agreements with vendors include standards or norms they will adhere by. Ask other funeral homes for examples of similar agreements when in doubt.
Use Outsourcing to Focus on Serving Your Families
All in all, when outsourcing is done right, there can be many benefits to your business and to your culture: it can allow you to have more focus on serving families, it can save you money (and time), and it can have better results and outcomes for your business, too.
Learn More About the Most Efficient Way to Manage Your Funeral Home
With CRäKN, you can stay on top of each and every detail associated with every arrangement—no matter where you are located. Using your digital, real-time Whiteboard, you can see all cases at once, or drill down to get details on a particular case. And better yet, cases are flagged when details are pending, so you never miss a beat.
Plus, we don’t lock you into a contract, we have no seat fees, no hosting fees, and no maintenance fees. We also want the entire staff to use CRäKN every day, so we won’t charge you for individual users.
We help funeral professionals save time, prevent duplicate work & reduce errors. Focus on the family, let us focus on helping you. Request a demo today!