How To Accurately Estimate Sales Enablement Outsourcing Costs
Every cent must be accounted for and justified when you’re trying to make a successful sales enablement business case. Going over budget means borrowing from other business ventures and departments. Or, worse yet, digging into your profit margin to ensure your employees get the resources they require. How do you know which expenses to include in your outsourcing budget if it’s your first time hiring an eLearning content provider? Even if you have experience with vendors, there’s still the risk of overspending and putting your bottom line in jeopardy. So, here are 7 top tips to develop a realistic sales enablement outsourcing budget and stretch available resources.
1. Take Stock Of Internal Assets
The key to cost-cutting is reducing waste and maximizing existing assets. Take a closer look at your current resource library to avoid redundancies and identify reusable content. For example, you can repurpose that COI compliance course by breaking it into JIT modules, therefore, reducing cognitive overload. Granted, you may need to invest in a rapid eLearning authoring tool to give it a good polish and incorporate new online training materials. Taking stock of internal assets also allows you to stretch your sales enablement outsourcing budget by narrowing the scope. You may not have to enlist their services for as many activities as you thought thanks to in-house upcycling.
2. Reevaluate Your Online Training Needs And Objectives
Another way to reduce outsourcing costs is to clarify your online training objectives. This allows you to determine if they still align with your online training needs or you need to adjust your definition of success. The vendor needs targeted objective statements to work with, not vague outcomes and sales enablement expectations. You may even be able to cross online training objectives off the list because you’ve already filled those performance and skill gaps, thereby, stretching your outsourcing budget even further.
3. Compile A List Of Essential Solutions
Identify your sales enablement budget must-haves and then differentiate between in-house tasks and outsourced solutions. For example, you need JIT product knowledge demos and customer persona simulations to facilitate real-world experience. Does your team have the necessary skills and tools to pull it off? Or do you need to outsource these tasks to your eLearning content provider for the sake of time and resource allocation? Compiling a list of essential solutions also allows you to find the best outsourcing partner for the job based on their services menu.
4. Develop An Implementation Timeline
Time is money. Thus, you need to create an implementation timeline to figure out how much time you need and calculate the payroll total for your L&D team. The timeline also enables you to break the process into manageable tasks, tools, and risks to develop a realistic budget. For instance, it will take a week to set up the LMS and endure the learning curve. What are the potential problems that may arise? How can you mitigate them? How much extra should you allocate for troubleshooting and resolution?
5. Evaluate Price Points In An Online Directory
A reliable online directory features the top outsourcing partners in your industry. But you can also evaluate their price points and value for money courtesy of user reviews. What is the overall satisfaction score and are they likely to recommend this company? What are their areas of specialization and do these align with your sales enablement needs? Of course, this is just a starting point since you must delve deeper into their pricing options, payment terms, etc. However, the directory offers you the opportunity to cross candidates who are out of your price range or don’t offer the right solutions off the list.
6. Request Personalized Quotes
You don’t know how much you’re going to spend until you reach out to vendors for a personalized quote. Include as much information as possible to get an accurate estimate. Then use the info to recalculate your budget and rethink your outsourcing scope. For example, it may be more cost-effective to develop certain resources in-house versus hiring an outsourcing partner. Likewise, you may discover that outsourcing is more budget-friendly because of tool costs, content curation, and so on. Now is also a good time to evaluate their portfolio to see what your money can buy.
7. Set Up A Meeting To Identify Hidden Fees
Schedule a meeting with the eLearning content provider to discuss your sales enablement training requirements and expectations. The primary goal is to ensure that they’re a good fit for your organization. That they have the necessary expertise and sales operations experience. However, it also gives you the chance to disclose hidden fees and fine-tune your sales training budget. Do they cover revisions or is that an extra charge? Does the estimate include eLearning authoring tools? Who’s going to host the content? Ask for an itemized list of everything that’s part of the package. Then go back to your original budget and compare. Is there anything you overlooked that pushes you over your spending limit? Can you negotiate a better price with the vendor by contracting multiple solutions?
Unless you’re fortunate enough to have endless L&D resources, you need an accurate sales enablement outsourcing budget to identify your spending limits, as well as make the most of existing assets and achieve your online training objectives without going into the red. One of the most crucial accounting elements is vendor clarification and open communication, disclosing hidden fees or tool costs you may have overlooked. So, it’s always worthwhile to meet one-on-one with the vendor to discuss the finer points of your agreement before making any long-term commitments.
If you want to learn more about implementing successful sales operations training, download our eBook Skills, Support, And Self-Confidence: Launch A Successful Sales Enablement Training Strategy Today. You will find all the information you need to train your sales team so that they gain the expertise and confidence they need to skyrocket their performance and offer unparalleled Customer Experience.