Strategic Insourcing: 13 Core Business Functions To Keep In-House

Forbes Business Council

Outsourcing has become a go-to strategy for many businesses seeking cost reduction and process optimization. In some cases, turning to external talent can help save money and free up valuable time for the internal team. However, certain core functions are often best managed internally for the long-term health of the organization.

Below, 13 Forbes Business Council members discuss the key business operations that should remain in-house, and why outsourcing these particular tasks can prove counterproductive to a company’s growth.

1. Marketing

While I believe in partnering with talented marketing consultants, I believe there should always be an in-house marketing team member. Also, this person has their pulse on business needs and the offerings that need to be better publicized. I’ve found that relying solely on external marketing talent takes the focus away from core business needs. – Annu KhotRely Services Inc.

2. Quality Control

Anything related to quality control of your product or service must never be outsourced. Your offerings define you and people come to you because they like what you make or serve. After you provide an offering, the rest can be outsourced, so long as there is accountability in place. – Johnny PineyroSurgent Capital

3. Leadership

In a business world where you can outsource almost anything, no company can grow without stable leadership. Accordingly, companies can’t flourish without a dedicated CEO who genuinely cares about the organization and the well-being of its employees. – Anna StellaBBSA

4. Sales

From personal experience, I would never outsource the sales and revenue-generating functions. Branding that mirrors the storied actions of a company can be communicated during the sales process. The touchpoints driven by teams, the reasons for properly conveying what is expected and the delivery are all vital to ensuring the end user is presented through the cycle to impact. Intangibles are lost outsourcing this. – Paul L. Gunn, Jr.KUOG Corporation

5. Customer Support And Relationship Management

I believe that maintaining customer support and relationship management in-house is crucial. Also, direct interaction with customers allows for a deeper understanding of their needs, concerns and preferences. In-house teams can provide personalized, timely and empathetic responses, fostering strong customer relationships and loyalty. – Adam RamseySuboxonet Inc.

6. Accounting And Bookkeeping

If you can afford it, avoid outsourcing accounting and bookkeeping. The reason is that those functions are essential because they deal with the company’s money. You would want a team that focuses on your bookkeeping and accounting solely so that the opportunity for mistakes is less likely. – Joseph KimbroughApex Real Estate Investments

7. Strategic Decision Making

Strategic decision making should remain in-house, as it’s integral to maintaining the core vision and direction of the company. Also, outsourcing can dilute the company’s focus and lead to misalignment with its mission and values. While in-house leaders with a deep understanding of the company’s culture, goals and nuances are best positioned to make decisions that will impact the business’s long-term success. – Jeff PedowitzThe Pedowitz Group

8. Reviews

Ideally, you can outsource every function in your company. The key is to lay the right foundations, including the company vision and core values. At this point, if you can afford C-level executives, a business can become hands-off and remain successful. However, a smart business owner should carry out timely reviews. Accountability matters, so this would be the one thing you should not outsource. – Anat (Anne Moss) El HashaharMoss Digital Publishing

9. Expense Reporting

Expense reporting should be kept in-house. I know a lot of people hire bookkeepers to input their expenses, but the function of reviewing your company’s finances, analyzing expenses and verifying you get your return on investment for all expenditures is something you can never get too big to do yourself. It provides you with unique insight into problems formulating before they bubble into catastrophes. – Maurice HararyThe Bid Lab

10. Human Resources

You must keep human resources in-house because this department supports all functions of an organization, and access for all is critical. – Geoffrey RocheCore Education PBC

11. Cybersecurity

One function that should be kept in-house is cybersecurity. While protecting sensitive data and ensuring the security of a company’s systems is a critical responsibility. Also, in-house teams have a deeper understanding of the organization’s specific needs, can respond quickly to evolving threats and maintain better control over sensitive information, reducing the risk of breaches and data loss. – Trey FerroSpot Pet Insurance

12. Finance

Finance is the function that must definitely be kept in-house, as keeping a pulse on finance is paramount to the business. Accordingly, this helps to maintain confidentiality and to maneuver the future course of action. A lot of other functions are generic, and tangible benchmarks can be made, which is paramount for outsourcing. – Kartik JobanputraSmartt.Studio

13. Your ‘Secret Sauce’

Practically speaking, anything can be outsourced, but those elements that make up your “secret sauce” should be held more closely and carefully. However, these may be as diverse as your manufacturing process and how you service customers to how you conduct research. If you do engage external help, make sure you are taking steps to protect your intellectual property and thereby the value of your company. – Katherine BradyCatchafire

Forbes Business Council Article Link:  Strategic Insourcing: 13 Core Business Functions To Keep In-House