7 Tips for Smarter Real Estate Outsourcing
Outsourcing, particularly in the real estate industry, has become something of the norm. Of course, outsourcing key functions for real estate agents, investors and companies isn’t without its challenges. So how can property professionals and businesses hire and manage remote staff for effectively? How can real estate outsourcing bring your business to the next level?
Outsourced team members, freelancers, remote workers, and independent contractors can bring far less risk, more efficiency, higher productivity, speed, and a superior ROI on labor. However, the ability to realize these benefits relies on smart hiring and managing. Done poorly, any type of hiring can deliver horrible results. So what smart practices and strategies can real estate firms and executives apply to ensure premium results?
- Understand Them
Take a moment to think about who these freelance workers are, just like you do with customers. The same thought should be put into job postings as marketing materials for buyers and sellers.
Great freelancers know their worth. They have the choice of working with hundreds of different real estate companies and professionals every day. They want to work with those that they can bring value to, but also which will be reliable in payment, and that they can be proud to be associated with. They also work differently. They have to apply for multiple gigs each day to keep their pipeline of income full, and don’t have time to deal with what may appear to be difficult people.
- Seek Out Industry Experience
You took the time to investigate and learn the real estate business. You know that while it can be one of the easiest and fastest ways to make money and build wealth, it can also be complicated, and requires experience to master. So instead of skimping a few dollars and having to spend more in training someone on the nuances of the industry and how to connect with your prime prospects, why not hire someone who is already an industry pro? They might even catapult your learning and expertise.
- Understand the Differences
Get to know more of the differences, and similarities between old school, in-house employees and outsourced ones. If you don’t, you are sure to get frustrated. Outsourced team members can bring incredible efficiency and cost effectiveness through the way they work, and only paying for what you need. However, remember they are likely juggling a dozen clients and gigs at any one moment. They have to keep their schedules fully booked a week or two in advance to keep their income steady and maximized. This is just like the way you try to load your pipeline of deals to always have real estate closings happening. This means hiring ahead of your needs, and allowing for these timelines is critical for success and the best work.
- Understand Their Process
It is wise to get a handle on their process. Depending on how you are hiring or are engaging them, they may have this displayed in some format (if you have time to look). It’s always wise to ask. What are the steps in getting the output you need? What’s the timeline? What will you need to do to get what you want from them? What does their process say about them? Do they offer a money back guarantee on their work? Will they make tweaks and corrections as part of the quote? What is the best way to communicate with them efficiently? Does their working process suggest they will be strong on quality and creativity?
- Build Loyalty
Just as building loyalty is a critical stepping stone to higher margins and long term success in real estate sales, investment, and property management, and with consumers and industry vendors, the same goes for your team. The fact they are outsourced is irrelevant. Perhaps it is even more important. As these team members are already doing what they want to be and are working on their terms, they have the potential to be around a lot longer than local ones, even if it is a start and stop deal. Taking steps to build loyalty, trust, and likeability can make a world of difference in speed of production in crunches later, the effort they put into your projects, and how they talk about you. They will. So will they tell people you are an awesome professional and company to work and do business with in any capacity, or will they say they have their reservations? The most savvy and successful real estate investors, agents and CEOs understand that all their interactions, even with what some might consider the lowest ranks, and even when they slip up makes all the difference in reputation and success. Remember these are free referral sources that can bring you a ton of business, or not.
Outsourced can be better than in-house because of efficiency from already being masters of their craft, but only if you are clear about what you are looking for and expect. It might sound tedious, but freelancers are not mind readers. Streamline to the results you want by providing samples of what you like and clear instructions. Save these instructions for your system, and save time while scaling in the future.
- Look for Bonuses
What else can they do for you? Just as permitting investors in your operation means looking for more than just the money, so does hiring and choosing vendors. So how else could some freelancers bring value to your real estate operation? Perhaps they can provide expert insight into what is working (and not), maybe they are respected industry names and influencers which can bring referrals in the future, and add to your credibility.