By: 4 April 2018
Improving business profitability with co-sourcing

Maxine Park explains how co-sourcing is increasing in popularity

With post-Brexit uncertainty continuing to cause instability to the economy, one of the main challenges for businesses is being able to find solutions which can save money, while preserving existing high standards. Offering less risk than outsourcing or multi-sourcing, co-sourcing is leading the way as a cost-effective alternative that provides customers with value for money.

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, offering them substantial savings on recruitment and training costs.

Co-sourcing not only ensures businesses have the necessary resources available to cope with increased workloads, but does it without affecting the rest of the firm or adding to the payroll. Employing this hybrid approach allows businesses to boost efficiency so provision is seamless, coordinated 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, which enables them to undertake remote typing and other support services, while ensuring the client’s data never leaves their servers.


Maxine Park is a solicitor and co-founder of co-sourcing and outsourcing services provider DictateNow

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 out of hours.

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 that organisations can reduce their in-house secretarial and support staff and boost both efficiency and profitability.

Implementing co-sourcing selectively allows clients to benefit from crucial administrative and management efficiencies. Internal teams can then spend their time focusing on their own jobs. It also means that clients have control over the staff, technology and workflows that 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 that 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.

This article originally appeared in issue 150 of Leeds & Yorkshire Lawyer