5 Tasks You Should Outsource to Non-Professionals (to Save Money)

I dun rite gud cuz I in Primary Two, but Ryan pay me $50 and he say: Sam, you rite my artykel and dun tell my boss. So I…”Ryan, get back here and fix this!” Sorry, I thought I was saving us time and money. Hey, we’d still get an article right? “But it’s full of random numbers and guesses!” I know, just as good as any investment banker. Meh, we’ll outsource these other things then:

 

Looking in  a phone book

Well he’s next to a dentist, I’ll just see if he wants to do my filling for cheaper.

 

Outsourcing to Professionals vs. Non-Professionals

Okay, so we can’t have brain surgeons and airline pilots outsourcing their jobs. But there are some tasks that, even in the hands of non-professionals, can be done well. And for a lot cheaper too.

These are:

  • Basic Administration
  • Basic Visual Design
  • Fact Checking
  • Certain Types of Tech Stuff
  • Small Deliveries

 

1. Basic Administration

 

Person sits in front of blank post-its

Explain how you’ve organized my life this week again?

 

Basic administration (aka pencil pushing) is like a bad girlfriend. It just nags at you, and you’re never sure if you want to fix it or find some way to get rid of it. It includes:

  • Answering e-mail queries
  • Sorting files into the right drives and folders
  • Inventorying office supplies
  • Downloading updates on all the terminals

For the most part, you don’t need a professional to do these. And if you only do it every few weeks, it’s hardly worth hiring a secretary. The best method?

Try online portals, like TaskAmigo. For the low price of $30 – $120 (depends on the amount of work involved), you can get everything straightened out at one go. Perfect for a side-business.

 

2. Basic Visual Design

 

People drawing

Relax, I’ve got this. I read a book about art once.

 

Need to spruce up your power point slides? Re-design the report covers? Or maybe you just need a logo for your new side-business.

Well, you don’t exactly need Picasso here. I spoke to Hendrick Vaughn, who makes a good income selling his drawings (he’s actually a sales manager):

Just last month, I did a brochure for a company selling river tours. I had this retro-style steamship I drew two years ago, and I offered it to them for $150.

They accepted it on the spot. They got the brochure to the printers two hours after e-mailing me. If they’d gone to a professional, it would have have cost way more, and probably taken a few days.”

Hendrick mentions that he’s never charged more than $400 for drawing anything. But it’s typical for local design firms to charge anywhere from $600 to a few thousand dollars per image. He suggests you:

Don’t look for a design firm first; browse the net and save images you like. Then contact those artists and outsource the work to them. They may be totally surprised, because no one’s approached them before. They usually won’t charge much.”

 

3. Fact Checking

 

Stack of library books

And for an extra $50, I’ll get facts that are actually real.

 

So you need to find the price of housing in 1937. Or you need to verify when the great fire of London was (history student, eh?)

Well, outsource. Anyone can walk into a library and look it up for you. Marcel Tay, who used to lecture at a private University, says this is an underused resource:

I know some students pay $70 for a cheat essay, or pay ridiculous sums like $200 for a complete bibliography and quotes. First of all it’s cheating, and secondly it’s a waste of money.

You can pay $50 to get someone to read your paper, and research your facts online or in the library. They don’t have to be professors or professionals. They just need to be literate, and know how to use a search engine.

Get their feedback, and make revisions. Your grades will be just as good.”

 

4. Certain Types of Tech Stuff

 

Hard Drive

Got it. I’ll just pry this sucker loose and “transfer” this data.

 

Backing up and reformatting a hard drive takes forever. And if you don’t do it yourself, you get charged anywhere from $50 to $150 by shops or private repairmen.

But many non-professionals are savvy enough to handle it, and won’t charge you that much. Yes, there’s the argument that they could mess up. But the odds are about equal to that of a spade malfunctioning. Some simple processes include:

  • Re-installing Windows
  • Reformatting
  • Transferring between Hard Drives
  • File conversions

My IT repair guy, Jason, says:

I’m surprised that people still pay me to do these.

I suggest that, instead of paying me, they ask some students or whoever. No need to be a professional IT guy. Then pay that guy $20 to sit there while he does it. It’s not even work; it’s just sitting there and clicking something every 15 minutes.

If you must pay for it, pay the cheapest. You don’t need an expert for this.”

 

5. Small Deliveries

 

Parcel

I know you’re not a professional, but just remember to pack the item in the box next time.

 

When you’re making small deliveries (e.g. a single letter, or low value parcel), it’s best to avoid major couriers. It’s about cost as well as speed.

I spoke to a courier company manager, who declined to be named:

Actually, professional couriers are not good for small deliveries. We have a long list of clients, and we charge more because of liability.

For example, if we damage something, we are liable up to a certain amount. Then there’s security screening for packages. All this is factored into the cost.

If you are sending a single low value-item, what’s the use of all this? Just pay a runner. We would charge you at least $30 per kilo. An errand runner might charge you half that. And we would probably be slower.”

 

Image Credits:
Nomadic Lass, , VFS Digital Design, walknboston, Nils Geylen

What do you outsource? Comment and let us know!

Get more Personal Finance tips and tricks on www.MoneySmart.sg

Click to Compare Singapore Home Loans, Car Insurance and Credit Cards on our other sites.



More From MoneySmart

--

Get stories like this on the Yahoo app and discover more every day.
Download it now.
Loading...
  • Markit reports 3Q loss Associated Press - 5 minutes ago

    On a per-share basis, the London-based company said it had a loss of 9 cents. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, came to 45 cents per share. The results surpassed Wall Street expectations. ... … More »

  • Saudis, Iran dash hopes for OPEC oil deal in Algeria
    Saudis, Iran dash hopes for OPEC oil deal in Algeria Reuters - 9 minutes ago

    Saudi Arabia and Iran on Tuesday dashed hopes that OPEC oil producers could clinch an output-limiting deal in Algeria this week as sources within the exporter group said the differences between the kingdom and Tehran remained too wide. "This is a … More »

  • Deutsche Bahn manager to become CEO of Vossloh - industry sources Reuters - 11 minutes ago

    Andreas Busemann, a senior manager with German rail operator Deutsche Bahn AG [DBN.UL] is expected to become chief executive of rail technology group Vossloh AG (VOSG.DE), industry sources said on Tuesday. The management change is on the agenda at … More »

  • Britain says economy needs an infrastructure upgrade after political drama Reuters - 26 minutes ago

    LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's economy needs an infrastructure and vocational education upgrade to deliver stability to businesses after months of political drama including the vote to leave the European ... … More »

  • SE Asia Stocks-Indonesia hits over 4-wk high on rupiah surge Reuters - 27 minutes ago

    By Anusha Ravindranath Sept 27 (Reuters) - Indonesian stocks recouped early losses to hit their highest in more than four weeks on Tuesday after the rupiah surged to a 17-month peak on likely inflows from ... … More »

  • Chinese hunger for Australia food leaves A$1 billion tax hole Reuters - 38 minutes ago

    Australia might be missing out on up to A$1 billion (588 million pounds) in uncollected taxes annually from Chinese agents who ship food back home to meet insatiable demand from a booming middle class. There are 40,000 so-called Chinese 'daigou' in … More »

  • France unlikely to achieve 2017 deficit target - fiscal watchdog Reuters - 45 minutes ago

    France is unlikely to meet its 2017 budget deficit target, the country's independent fiscal watchdog said on Tuesday, casting doubt on the government's plan to cut the shortfall to less than 3 percent of output. The government's deficit reduction … More »

  • Credit Suisse's Thiam guides for third quarter outflows in Swiss business Reuters - 46 minutes ago

    Credit Suisse Chief Executive Tidjane Thiam on Tuesday guided investors for some outflows in its domestic business in the third quarter as it looks to cut down on risk exposure. "We are going through our relationships with external asset managers … More »

  • Close Brothers shrugs off Brexit worries as FY profit rises Reuters - 53 minutes ago

    The Brexit vote had little direct impact on demand at the company's retail, commercial, and property lending operations, Chief Executive Preben Prebensen told Reuters. Unlike companies such as IG Group and CMC Markets, Close Brothers said its … More »

  • AccorHotels joins buoyant youth hostels market
    AccorHotels joins buoyant youth hostels market Reuters - 54 minutes ago

    AccorHotels is launching a youth hostel brand called Joe&Joe to tap the spending power of young adults, part of its response to the challenges posed by Airbnb and an entry into a high-growth sector. Europe's largest hotel group said on Tuesday it … More »

  • Oil prices slip as hopes for a deal in Algiers fade
    Oil prices slip as hopes for a deal in Algiers fade Reuters - 1 hour 2 minutes ago

    Saudi Arabia on Tuesday dashed hopes that OPEC oil producers could clinch a deal in Algeria this week as sources within the exporter group said the differences between the kingdom and rival Iran remained too wide. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) … More »

  • Global stocks, Mexico peso bounce as markets score one for Clinton
    Global stocks, Mexico peso bounce as markets score one for Clinton Reuters - 1 hour 3 minutes ago

    World shares swung higher and the Mexican peso surged more than two percent on Tuesday, as investors awarded the first U.S. presidential debate to Democrat Hillary Clinton over Republican Donald Trump. Markets have tended to see Clinton as the … More »

  • World stocks, Mexico peso bounce as markets score one for Clinton
    World stocks, Mexico peso bounce as markets score one for Clinton Reuters - 1 hour 3 minutes ago

    World shares swung higher and the Mexican peso surged more than two percent on Tuesday, as investors awarded the first U.S. presidential debate to Democrat Hillary Clinton over Republican Donald Trump. Markets have tended to see Clinton as the … More »

  • WTO cuts 2016 world trade growth forecast to 1.7 percent
    WTO cuts 2016 world trade growth forecast to 1.7 percent Reuters - 1 hour 14 minutes ago

    The World trade Organization cut its forecast for global trade growth this year by more than a third on Tuesday, reflecting a slowdown in China and falling levels of imports into the United States. The new figure of 1.7 percent, down from the WTO's … More »

  • China industrial profits rise most in 3 years as economy shows signs of stabilising
    China industrial profits rise most in 3 years as economy shows signs of stabilising Reuters - 1 hour 19 minutes ago

    Profits in China's industrial sector rose at the fastest pace in three years as the world's second-biggest economy showed more signs of stabilising, though some private forecasters say the improvement may be more fleeting than real. Profits of … More »

  • Air France 'shirt-ripping' trial opens AFP - 1 hour 23 minutes ago

    Fifteen people went on trial Tuesday over rowdy scenes a year ago in which an Air France executive had his shirt ripped as he fled a mob of workers angry over planned job cuts. Images of the incident near ... … More »

  • Asian Stocks Rise for First Time in Three Days After U.S. Debate Bloomberg - 1 hour 34 minutes ago

    The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.7 percent to 141.85 as of 4:30 p.m. in Hong Kong after sliding as much as 0.9 percent earlier, as S&P 500 Index futures climbed 0.4 percent. In a little more than 90 minute face-off, Trump and Clinton sparred on … More »

  • FTSE hovers near one-week lows as Wolseley slides Reuters - 1 hour 36 minutes ago

    Britain's top shares index hovered near one-week lows on Tuesday, weighed down by a drop in construction stocks such as Wolseley and weaker energy company stock prices. The blue-chip FTSE 100 index was flat at 6,819.59 points, near its lowest level … More »

  • Markets cheer Clinton in US presidential debate
    Markets cheer Clinton in US presidential debate AFP News - 1 hour 38 minutes ago

    Financial markets Tuesday cheered Hillary Clinton's performance in the first US presidential debate, with stocks and high-risk currencies staging a "relief rally" as investors saw her as victor over Republican rival Donald Trump. Key Asian bourses … More »

  • London still top finance centre, but Brexit may change that - survey
    London still top finance centre, but Brexit may change that - survey Reuters - 1 hour 40 minutes ago

    London's role as the world's top financial centre could be under threat as the implications of Britain leaving the European Union start to sink in, a survey showed on Monday. The Z/Yen 20th global financial centres index (GFCI), which looks at 87 … More »

  • WHY IT MATTERS: Social Security
    WHY IT MATTERS: Social Security Associated Press - 1 hour 43 minutes ago

    THE ISSUE: More than 60 million retirees, disabled workers, spouses and children rely on monthly Social Security benefits. That's nearly one in five Americans. The trustees who oversee Social Security ... … More »

  • China’s Shibor Climbs to Seven-Week High as PBOC Withdraws Funds Bloomberg - 1 hour 49 minutes ago

    (Bloomberg) -- Yuan borrowing costs in Shanghai rose to a seven-week high as China’s central bank pulled funds from the financial system for the second day in a row. … More »

  • Asian Hunger for Yield Tested by Junk-Rated Casino Bond Plan (2) Bloomberg - 1 hour 54 minutes ago

    Imperial Pacific International Holdings Ltd. plans to sell dollar bonds for the first time to fund its casino resort in Saipan Island, a U.S. territory in the Pacific Ocean, according to a bond document. The bond is rated B1, four steps below … More »

  • Euro zone lending stable in August, M3 beats expectations Reuters - 2 hours 12 minutes ago

    Lending growth to euro zone companies and households held steady last month while a broader measure of money circulating, often an indicator of future activity, rose past expectations, data from the European Central Bank showed on Tuesday. The … More »

  • Global money laundering group urges Singapore to step up its efforts Reuters - 2 hours 13 minutes ago

    An international group that monitors money laundering said on Tuesday that Singapore should pursue more offenders involved in international cases and take more action to confiscate suspicious funds moving through the city-state. "Singapore … More »

 
Recent Quotes
Symbol Price Change % Chg 
Your most recently viewed tickers will automatically show up here if you type a ticker in the "Enter symbol/company" at the bottom of this module.
You need to enable your browser cookies to view your most recent quotes.
 
Sign-in to view quotes in your portfolios.

MARKET MOVERS

  • Most Actives
    Most Actives
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.141+0.003+2.17%
    N21.SI
    3.99+0.03+0.76%
    Z74.SI
    0.155+0.003+1.97%
    AFC.SI
    0.740.000.00%
    BS6.SI
    0.275+0.010+3.77%
    5ME.SI
  • % Gainers
    % Gainers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.133+0.020+17.70%
    5PF.SI
    0.19+0.03+15.85%
    AWI.SI
    1.48+0.16+12.12%
    S91.SI
    0.198+0.020+11.24%
    M14.SI
    0.60+0.05+9.09%
    AZA.SI
  • % Losers
    % Losers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.255-0.110-30.14%
    AZT.SI
    0.56-0.18-24.32%
    5VJ.SI
    0.395-0.070-15.05%
    K1Q.SI
    0.162-0.028-14.74%
    BGO.SI
    0.122-0.020-14.08%
    569.SI

Market Data

  • Currencies
    Currencies
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    1.3592-0.001-0.07%
    USDSGD=X
    1.5278-0.0025-0.16%
    EURSGD=X
    1.7596-0.0032-0.18%
    GBPSGD=X
    73.8650+0.141+0.19%
    SGDJPY=X
    5.7037+0.0044+0.08%
    SGDHKD=X
    3.0338-0.0004-0.01%
    SGDMYR=X
    9,530.4688-48.3535-0.50%
    SGDIDR=X
    4.9060+0.0042+0.09%
    SGDCNY=X
    1.0416+0.003+0.29%
    AUDSGD=X
  • Commodities
    Commodities
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    1,340.80-3.30-0.25%
    GCZ16.CMX
    19.51-0.09-0.44%
    SIZ16.CMX
    94.45-1.31-1.37%
    ^XAU
    2.18-0.02-0.71%
    HGZ16.CMX
    43.85+0.41+0.94%
    CLV16.NYM
  • Bonds
    Bonds
    TreasuryYield (%)Yield Change
    1.13-0.03
    ^FVX
    1.59-0.03
    ^TNX
    2.33-0.01
    ^TYX