What is Out-tasking and Why Should B2B Sales Leaders Care?

Customer buying habits have advanced from procuring sophisticated data systems, being charged an annual subscription, and allocating scarce resources to train their teams to run reports. They want suppliers to solve their data procurement problems, such as helping them maintain their output when faced with information overload, budgetary cuts and a lack of resources.

Out-tasking is an outsourcing business model that refers to a supplier performing tactical or project-oriented tasks. In certain sectors, such as the Government and National Security community, it is changing how customers interact with their business intelligence suppliers. Customers are asking for concierge-type pricing agreements, rather than end-user licenses, and that includes the supplier farming their proprietary data on behalf of the client, when the need arises.

For example, consider a potential threat posed by a terrorist group in a specific country. National Security organisations need to allocate scarce resources to deliver a detailed analysis of the situation. Rather than use high-value in-house personnel to sift information sources, they out-task the analysis function to a data vendor, who is well-equipped to navigate their proprietary technology to solve their customers’ problems. The complex or secret work is completed in-house, and the non-specialist data aggregation is performed by the trusted supplier.

The out-tasking model allows the government agency to leverage the search and analytical expertise of their suppliers, freeing resources to focus on the wider issue.

For National Defence data suppliers, out-tasking offers the following distinct benefits:

Guaranteed use of their data assets as their expert teams utilise their proprietary content to answer questions.

Maintaining a premium price for the out-tasking function. In exchange for absorbing the bulk of the work, the price for the deliverable is optimised.

Overcoming budgetary issues in an economic downturn. Budgetary cuts have a lesser impact on the data supplier in an out-tasking model, as the transactional nature of task-specific billing can be attributed to a contingency or operational budget that is allocated when a crisis occurs. In this regard, the vendor is able to leverage different budgetary resources.

Deepened customer relationships. The vendor becomes more than a data supplier, but a trusted advisor with industry specific knowledge. In some instances, the vendor will embed staff within a government organisation, with their sole function being to respond to transactional projects when the need arises.

The out-tasking model allows customers to optimise scarce human resources, focus on their strengths, and maintain fixed costs. It's a win:win scenario and B2B sales leaders must understand what role, if any, this pricing strategy and depth of service might play in their specific industry.

Do you offer an out-tasking pricing-model as a way of differentiating yourself in 2017? (Tweet)

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