Do you outsource any functions of your business? Do you hire a remote team to help you offload some of the tasks that make your business run?
Are you looking to scale your business beyond the walls of your current office without adding additional real estate overhead?
Here at Time Doctor, we’ve become obsessed with discovering who our customers are.
We want to know what they do, how they spend their time at work, and what challenges they face on a day to day basis. We want to compile the lessons our customers teach us about scaling their business, so we can show you how to do the exact same thing.
But before we get into all of that, first, we need to get a firm grasp on who our users are.
In order to do that, we searched for the apps and websites that our customers used during a 24 hour period. We were then able to use this data to gain insight into the job functions and how our customers spent their day completing business tasks.
One of the first things that we needed to track was the location of our users.
At Time Doctor, we track the amount of hours a person uses our service during work hours. We don’t necessarily track where a company is headquartered.
Keep that in mind as you look at this map:
Here, we are displaying the average number of hours a person works in a particular country. The darker the color, the higher the average number of hours worked.
And as you can see, Time Doctor users reside on almost all continents spanning across all time zones. (Don’t think we forgot about you, Antarctica.)
After deeper observation, you can see that the highest average number of hours worked happen to be in Southeast Asia.
These are places like China, India, Pakistan, Philippines, and Singapore. To be honest, this isn’t a complete surprise.
It shows that TimeDoctor users are a part of the global trend of western companies that outsource various business functions.
After South East Asia, the greatest number of average hours tracked is in South America. Lead by Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador and Venezuala, these emerging markets are continuing their upward trend toward contributing toward the global marketplace.
Now that we know where our users are located, it’s time to find out what they do.
Once we discovered where our users are, we wanted to find out what jobs they were doing.
Because we don’t ask for that information when a user signs up for TimeDoctor, there isn’t a way to directly answer this query.
So, we had to find out what they did by analyzing the apps they were using and the websites that they visited.
After doing some analysis, we discovered that a large portion of our users fall into one of four occupation categories: Software Developers, Web Designers, Customer Service Specialists, and Sales and Marketing.
As far as we can tell, the number one occupation of TimeDoctor users is software developers. They use a wide arrange of apps for coding purposes.
These apps don’t count the project management tools like Basecamp, Trello, or Github that help developers manage their projects.
After software developers, designers were another top occupation among TimeDoctor users. Designers use apps like Microsoft Visual Studio, Dreamweaver, and Adobe Illustrator in order to complete their tasks.
Once again, these tools do not account for the amount of time spent in various project management apps that assist in collaborating with other team members to complete projects.
Zendesk is by far the single most popular customer service tool among TimeDoctor users. Outsourcing customer service to overseas, especially to the Philippines has become increasingly popular.
A significant proportion of the world’s biggest banks outsource to the Philippines, including JPMorgan Chase, HSBC, Wells Fargo and Citibank. They choose to outsource to the Philippines because of the low cost, the large number of people who can speak English with little or no accent, and culture’s work ethic.
Other tools that TimeDoctor users use for customer service are HelpScout, Desk.com, and Supportly.
Finally, our data indicates that a large majority of TimeDoctor users are sales and marketing professionals.
They use tools to manage their company’s social media accounts, talk to their customers, hunt for prospects, and manage the sales pipeline with a variety of CRM’s.
Once again, we observe the apps and websites our customers are visiting to find out how they spend their days outside of the apps used to complete their primary jobs.
What comes as no surprise is that our users spend a large time communicating with their team members using skype.
In the graph below, you can see that nearly 11,000 hours have been attributed to communications. Every single one of those hours is from Skype. This is by far the platform of choice when it comes to internal communications.
It’s free. It’s a relatively high quality tool. And you can easily share files, links, and other documentation during the chat.
It is also no surprise that many of TimeDoctor’s users are on Social Media. Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube are becoming more and more integrated in the lives of the labor force.
These tools are used for both business reasons and personal reasons. We all know the stories of employees spending hours looking at friends photos, but our users also use these tools for ads, to search and message prospective customers, and how to accomplish business tasks.
When it comes to Office Work, Google Docs is the primary tool. Like Skype, it’s free, and it allows for easy collaboration among teams spread across multiple continents and time zones.
I intentionally chose not to include project management applications in the “Occupation” section of this post because I knew that I was going to include it here.
And finally, we have found that a large portion of time is spent communicating to prospective customers using apps like Olark.
These are apps that are found on a website that allow our users to directly communicate to visitors who may have questions about the product or service.
By getting a much deeper understanding of who our customers are and where they are located, we are able to determine the challenges they must overcome when scaling and growing their businesses.
Once we are able to understand these challenges, we are able to translate them so that the entire outsourcing community can learn and grow together.