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Guiding Your Outsource Provider Through Proper Use of Online Tools

When I hire an outsource provider, they are taught to use Basecamp. This is on a daily basis for how we communicate with them. I use Basecamp as a centralized communication method. We used to use our Gmail and send our emails backwards and forwards but the issue we were finding was one project manager might know exactly what’s going on.

If becomes a member of our website SEO company or another team member started to work with an assistant because someone else was away, then they wouldn’t know where things were up to. So we use Basecamp as a centralized place to check in and see where the assistants are up to and do the day by day communication.

For those of you who don’t know Basecamp, do a little bit of research but there are whole lot of different ways that you can use it. We’ve tried doing things where we set up individual tasks and individual processes that are related with SEO services. Under this area, it used to be based on tasks so article writing used to get their own section and then everything to do with article writing went under that section, so that way more assistants were working on that.

It ended up becoming a little bit of a nightmare. The best way that we’ve found to use it is to have a thread for each outsource provider. So each person gets their own thread.

We have something that we call start of the day calls. This is the job of the project manager. In here, the project manager chats with the assistants. Everything that they will be able to talk about will be documented in the Basecamp. In a start of day call he chats with them to get them up to speed and then those bullet points are logged in. This gives me or others who jump in, an overview of what has been talked about or what’s been communicated. So usually it goes supervisor, person, supervisor, person, supervisor, assistant.

An end of day email helps you get on top of the assistant’s task or website SEO training. It also helps you avoid one of the cons of outsourcing – miscommunication. She’ll document what it is that she does for the day, what’s left to do and any questions. We just use Basecamp as a centralized place for communication with each assistant, so that a supervisor can jump in and see exactly where the process is up to.

What then are the details of an end of day email? This email shows exactly what a specific assistant has done for the whole day. They are listed in bullet form. Along with them are the number of hours and minutes spent in accomplishing each of the tasks. We document this for each outsource provider as we have an expected time of accomplishment for each of the tasks. This is some sort of an average time that we set. At times, an assistant may use up longer time in finishing a task. I do not say that she is taking advantage of my time right away. I give her the benefit of the doubt and teach her techniques to finish tasks quicker.

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