Outsourced Copywriting is Good for Business Continuity

Yeah, I'm gonna state that title as a fact. If you're looking at your disaster recovery/business continuity plans for the winter, consider outsourcing your copywriting.

Why? Well, it takes a lot of the pressure off of you, for a start. Hire a freelancer, and it's their responsibility to make sure you get your content, by hook or by crook.

Freelance copywriters don't have the safety net of a permanent contract, and generally don't have an IT team to fall back on if something goes wrong. For that reason, I'm something of an expert at rooting out viruses if they ever make it through my computer's robust defences.

But it's not just about being a one-man army - freelance copywriters also probably have a backup plan, because they can't afford negative word-of-mouth. We thrive on reputation and recommendation, so if one computer goes down, we'll find an alternative.

It could be heading to the local coffee shop with a netbook, to use their broadband hotspot.

It might mean a quick dash to an internet cafe, or the local library, if something stops all of our computer equipment from working.

Whatever happens, a good freelancer will do whatever it takes to get back online and get your content to you - and if it's our fault, we absorb the costs, too.

Preparing For a Rainy Day

It's not just about that level of commitment; there are also good reasons why a freelancer can keep working when an in-house team can't, and many of them are related to the weather.

When flooding or heavy snow hits, perhaps you have plans for your in-house team to work from home. But do you have the IT infrastructure to support that? Do they have all of the information they'd need, readily available?

Or would they be floundering without the necessary passwords and documents and all the other accessories that contribute towards a productive day at (or away from) the office?

On Thin Ice

My office is my lounge. Unless the weather's bad enough that I can't walk ten yards inside my own flat, I'm gonna make it to work.

If it's windy, rainy or icy outside, there's a pretty good chance that I'll get more done than on a 'normal' day.

If my broadband connection goes down, there are 15 neighbouring flats. Some are with BT, others Virgin Media, some are probably with Sky. Some have dongles, or smartphones that can connect your laptop to the internet through witchcraft.

The point is, whatever happens outside, there's a pretty good chance I'll find a way of emailing your content to you, or uploading it to your website or blog.

Why is that? Well, apart from everything I've said above, when you outsource, you avoid the rigid structure of in-house operations.

Your Flexible Friend

Freelancers are champions of flexibility; many of us chose to work this way because of the freedom it allows us to work when we want, where we want, how we want.

Sure, we keep any personal information private - and I wouldn't go piggybacking on a neighbour's internet connection unless absolutely necessary (and obviously I wouldn't connect without their permission!) - but when we need to find a way, we will.

There have been over 70 weather warnings from the Met Office in October so far. Some were amber alerts - the second-highest caution the forecasting service can issue. Most were for heavy rain, although some were for strong winds. November is likely to bring the first warnings of ice, and maybe snow.

So, rather than look at disaster recovery as a way of getting your business back on its feet, why not look at ways to keep things ticking over, whatever happens?

Even if the weather shuts down your company for a week - or you all decide to take a full Christmas holiday - a freelancer can be your lone champion, keeping your site updated and your blog fresh until you're all back and ready to pick up where you left off.

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