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  • Nitya Kirat

Should You Outsource Your Sales Team or Keep It In-House? (UPDATED for COVID)

We posted an article last year that was quite popular on whether a company should consider outsourcing their sales team (or part of) or keep it in-house. Given what’s happened this year, it seems like a relevant topic to share some updated thoughts on.

For example, location was a key criteria to consider – however, based on what we’ve seen it’s possible to have success with people working from anywhere. Similarly, tools and technology improvements have made more options possible than ever. Three ideas to consider:

1) (Recent) Past Performance

While we can’t guarantee future results based on past performance, it’s been interesting to hear the different response to the question – “how has your team adapted to working from home this year?” If they’ve struggled, this is obviously a high priority for you to resolve. If they’ve thrived, that’s awesome and kudos to your team, leadership, and company culture! In EITHER case, it’s important to dive deeper into what’s happened.

2) Attribution

A familiar term for those in financial services, it’s important to understand the “why”?

Whether productivity and results are improved, level, or down, figuring out the causes can give clarity around the future path. What’s the impact of the following on what you’re seeing:

- The market you’re in?

- Your products or services?

- Leadership at the top providing vision and clarity?

- Leadership in the middle driving performance from their teams?

- The caliber of your sales people?

- The effectiveness of your training programs?

3) Hedging

It doesn’t even have to be an all or nothing scenario. Building an internal team takes effort, expertise, and time, but can have a bigger impact on long term company culture. Outsourcing provides flexibility, requires less resources, and is easier to shut if it doesn’t meet expectations. For teams large enough, it can make sense to do both.

One thing this year has forced us to do is re-assess everything and it has also provided the opportunity to make improvements that we weren’t planning on making.


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