Solicitor and co-founder of transcription services provider DictateNow, Maxine Park, recently discussed the growing popularity of co-sourcing in Practice Management magazine.

Practice Management is the leading source of information for the primary care practice manager – helping industry professionals run general practices effectively.

It features the latest news and innovations, management issues, legal advice and practical support dedicated to the practice manager.

Maxine’s article highlights how within modern business companies are turning to co-sourcing as a cost-effective way of completing important business functions, and the benefits this can bring compared to traditional outsourcing.

The article can be found in the March edition of Practice Management.

Alternatively, read the article here:

Co-Sourcing: A cost-effective solution?

Maxine Park explains how the emergence of co-sourcing, where a business function is performed by both internal staff and external resources, is revolutionising business.

As modern business evolves, organisations are having to find ways to drive down costs without affecting the quality of their work. While outsourcing back-office functions has been a widely adopted solution, there has been a recent shift in attitudes with co-sourcing beginning to grow in popularity.

With a new year ahead, the challenge in 2018 is to find cost-effective solutions that still inspire innovation and creativity. Offering less risk than traditional outsourcing or multi-sourcing, many companies are turning to co-sourcing as a way of giving their clients the best value for money, while allowing better control over specific roles and functions.

Combining internal and external resources in this manner delivers services more efficiently and larger service providers will have almost limitless resources available to meet the changing demands of their clients, saving them recruitment and training costs.

Not only does this benefit the organisation in terms of availability of resources, but it also helps them save money as they do not have to recruit additional staff to meet growing demands. Employing this hybrid approach allows businesses to boost efficiency so provision is seamless, co-ordinated and available around the clock.

While there may be data security and confidentiality considerations when outsourcing; with co-sourcing, experienced UK-based secretaries are granted secure, remote access to an organisation’s system to undertake remote typing and other support services, ensuring the client’s data never leaves their servers.

Developing a premium co-sourcing solution for an organisation will involve typists employed by the service provider spending time at a client’s offices to ensure each member of the team is familiar with the system and is trained in the unique working methods of the organisation and its business ethos. Organisations using a co-sourcing approach can benefit from services which include the transcription of digital dictation files, copy typing, file opening, data input and document production.

An important advantage of co-sourcing is companies pay only for the working time of staff and not their National Insurance contributions, holiday pay or sick days. Evaluations of cost versus output show co-sourced secretaries outperform their in-house counterparts by a wide margin.

Co-sourcing also makes evening and weekend working possible, with all the necessary security and confidentiality compliance measures in place and without having to pay people overtime for working late.

Organisations considering co-sourcing should seek partners that have the new ISO 27001:2013 certification, which proves they operate an effective Information Security Management System and are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Outsourcing still plays an important role, but the emergence of co-sourcing as a more cost-effective solution means organisations can reduce their in-house secretarial and support staff and boost efficiency and profitability.

Implementing co-sourcing selectively allows clients to benefit from crucial administrative and management efficiencies. Internal teams can focus on their own jobs.

It also means clients have control over the staff, technology and workflows which are developed and integrated into their firm. Co-sourcing enables the organisation to retain knowledge and intricacies about the company.

Co-sourcing will reward forward-thinking enterprises with sustained competitive advantages because it is concerned with business performance. This means activities which are engaged as part of its process become a controlled and integrated part of the organisation.

Additionally, one of the principle benefits of co-sourcing is helping to create a more motivated workforce.  It also allows companies to concentrate efforts on the more strategic of its initiatives while maintaining full management control and high service levels.

Co-sourcing can be particularly helpful when there has been recent changes in your organisation, or when you need more flexibility with audits, or when new issues have arisen and the current staff are unable to meet those demands quickly.

Often, co-sourcing is an important resource when new needs arise and there are no funds in the current budget to hire new staff. By co-sourcing the help your organisation needs, when you need it, you save the costs associated with a new starter. You can engage your co-sourced team for specific work when it is needed.

While outsourcing still has a role to play, the emergence and evidence of co-sourcing as a more cost effective way of saving money means organisations can, in the future, be assured sustaining an efficient and profitable business, one which is better prepared to deal with the challenges it is likely to face.”