How to get outsourcing right

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By Maria Lazarte
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With new companies like Uber and AirBnb changing the rules of the game for those with more established “traditional” business models, many are turning to outsourcing as one way to diversify, specialize, cut costs and become more competitive in a modern business environment. Getting this move right can be challenging, but on this video interview Peter Bannink, Project Editor of ISO 37500, shares with us how a new ISO standard on outsourcing can help organizations do just that.

Outsourcing, the transfer of work to an external company, is nothing new. But recent years have seen an exponential increase in this practice and this is expected to continue.

Behind this pattern are companies choosing to focus on their core business areas and reduce costs. Although the premise of outsourcing can be beneficial, the introduction of an external third party can also backfire and result in lower quality, more complicated interactions, slower turnaround times and unhappy customers and employees. But new guidance can help organizations reap the benefits and avoid common pitfalls.

According to Bannink, ISO 37500, which focuses on business relations, especially business-to-business transactions, will help organizations put in place an adaptive business model to enable successful outsourcing interactions.


Peter Bannink, Project Editor, ISO 37500, explains why a standard was needed and how it can make outsourcing a lot easier for everyone involved.

Why an International Standard?

Outsourcing exchanges often take place across national borders, which gives more flexibility and choice to companies, but also creates barriers when it comes to terminology, best practices and understanding. ISO 37500 puts everyone on the same page by offering a common language and framework, saving time and improving business relations.

What is ISO 37500 about?

“The standard is about joint decision making, joint delivery of services, and joint governance on outsourcing. It’s ultimately about collaboration,” explains Bannink in this interview. ISO 37500 is intended to be used by all parties in an outsourcing relationship but, according to Bannink, senior management will find it particularly useful. They can use the standard to identify risks related to outsourcing so they can be better prepared and put in place practices to ensure successful outsourcing transactions.

What’s next?

ISO 37500 is an overarching standard that can be used in all fields. For Bannink, the next step would be to focus on the particular needs of different industries.

Maria Lazarte
Maria Lazarte

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