Are SMBs Outsourcing Their Way to Average?

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Vappingo Provides Four Reasons Why Businesses May Wish to Avoid the Wisdom of Crowds.

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Crowdsourcing can often constitute a '1000 monkeys working on 1000 typewriters' syndrome, where project outputs aren’t gradually refined and perfected, but are instead individually re-invented.

Tough times lie ahead in 2012, and businesses throughout the world are being forced to do more with less. Traditional brick and mortar service providers are simply too costly for SMBs that are trying to survive on a shoestring and, according to Fox Small Business Center, many small business owners have turned to crowdsourcing models to gain access to more talent at a lower price. But are companies that rely on the potential of collective intelligence in danger of outsourcing their way to average?

One business that is standing firmly apart from the crowd—as opposed to within it—is Vappingo, an online editing and proofreading service that provides a quick and easy English checking service at rates that are typically much lower than those available via crowdsourcing applications.

“It’s important for me to emphasize that Vappingo is not a crowdsourcing site,” asserts Vappingo’s founder Sarah Moore. “If there’s any term that more accurately describes what we do, then it’s ‘uncrowded sourcing’ — it’s our job to ensure that our customers quickly and easily get access to the expert help they need. This is what saves everybody time, hassle, headaches and—most importantly—it’s what allows us to guarantee professional results at affordable prices.”

Sarah provides four reasons as to why the illusionary wisdom of crowds is not always the brainpower your business needs:

  • Depending upon the way in which it is deployed, crowdsourcing can often constitute a “1000 monkeys working on 1000 typewriters” syndrome, where project outputs aren’t gradually refined and perfected, but are instead individually re-invented as each member of the crowd adds their own opinion and style. This ultimately leaves the customer with the time-consuming task of sorting through the outputs and separating the good from the bad.
  • There are serious privacy and data protection issues associated with crowdsourcing and this should be of major concern to people who are interested in these services, especially those who are using crowdsourcing models to deal with important business documentation. If something does go wrong and your information is compromised, what recourse do you have? The more people that have access to your business documentation and marketing strategy, the more risky the crowdsourcing model becomes.
  • Many crowdsouricng models operate “free” limited services or ask 100s of providers to bid on one piece of work. This can only ever be successful on a short-term basis. Time is valuable, no matter what realm you’re operating in, and service providers that have genuine experience and qualifications will demand a return for their time and effort. If they feel they aren’t being paid enough for their services, they will go elsewhere and the quality of the resulting “crowd” will gradually diminish.
  • Many proponents of crowdsourcing argue that it’s a more effective method of getting bigger jobs completed quicker. While this may be true for some projects, it isn’t necessarily true of them all. Many tasks, such as proofreading and editing for example, need continuity and consistency; if a large number of editors are working on one document at any one time, this is impossible to achieve.

“Depending upon how it is used, crowdsourcing can constitute a step backwards, not the sourcing breakthrough that everyone seems to be shouting about,” argues Sarah. “Many businesses have invested thousands of dollars finding and training the best talent for their customers. It just doesn’t make sense for small business owners to ignore the expertise of these companies and take on this task themselves, especially when the resulting deliverable is seldom the panacea that was promised.

“When it comes to editing and proofreading, I see it like this: if business owners really want assurance that their written communications are professionally edited and they want their brand to succeed, then they’ll turn to the professionals and use their own time more wisely.”

About Vappingo

Vappingo is a new kind of editorial service that combines the professionalism and expertise of traditional editing and proofreading agencies with the accessibility of the Internet—creating a simple 24/7 English checking service that can be used by anyone, at any time, from just $0.020 USD per word. With the unique Vappingo console, you can always track the progress of your order and their full money-back guarantee and confidentiality policy means that the entire process is risk free.

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Sarah Moore
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