To keep things in-house, or not to keep things in-house?
That’s the question every business owner who needs to hire a developer has asked.
While in-house dev teams can be great, they’re also not your only option. In fact, outsourcing to a third-party dev team may be a better solution not only for your time and energy, but also for the quality of your projects.
But do you really need to hire out? And will it really solve all your problems?
Well, here’s what you should know…
Do I Need to Outsource?
Maybe “outsource” isn’t the right word, because we’re not necessarily talking about packing up your operations and shipping them overseas. What we’re really suggesting is using a third-party service to help lighten the load (though that team could be from any country… like somewhere in North America… hint hint).
Maybe you don’t feel quite ready for that, though. You might be thinking that your team isn’t that stressed, or that you’re not sure you can afford outside help quite yet.
But there are many, many benefits to hiring a dev team outside of your company. To name a few:
- You’re building a new application and your current dev team just doesn’t have the expertise
- You want to build something new and you already have a great dev team, but they’re swamped with other projects
- You need to get things done faster and your deadlines aren’t being met
- You’re trying to hire an in-house team but it’s taking longer than you thought
- You have big problems that need solutions, and those solutions are outside your wheelhouse
- You have concerns about the quality of your developer’s work, and you need an outside eye
Or maybe your current team is bugging you and you want to get back at them by threatening to hire out (no judgments). Either way, if any of the above situations sound familiar, you may want to consider looking into a third-party development team.
No But Really, Do I Need This?
Look, we’re not wizards who can predict the future. We can’t say with 100% certainty that third-party will help you accomplish all your goals. But we do know there are things third-party services can do for you that in-house teams simply can’t.
You’re Hiring for Experience
You may be thinking, “Well everyone who’s anyone has their own in-house team!” But that’s not entirely true. In fact, there are several big companies out there that were built using third party dev teams, including Slack, Skype, and GitHub. Even Basecamp outsourced their dev team, and their whole company is built on being a third-party resource.
While each company has its own reasons for outsourcing, one of the biggest benefits that they have in common is the idea is that you’re hiring a ready-made team of experts who know what they’re doing.
You don’t have to spend days, weeks, months, or even years sorting through resumes trying to find the perfect team to build one project. Besides, what will you do with your specialized task force of developers when a new, totally unrelated project comes along?
Third-party teams often specialize in certain areas, so even if you don’t want to hire out every single project, you can still find teams with the experience you need to build the project you want.
Even if you’ve had a bad experience in the past with incompetent third-party teams, know that not every team is that way, and you can always keep looking to find the right fit.
You’re Hiring for Time
Some dev teams run really efficiently, but others not so much. If your team falls into that latter category and you find yourself constantly running against the clock, then you should be at least considering hiring out to some degree.
Remember, third-party teams are designed to handle the projects you will throw at them. That’s why they exist. If you haven’t found one you love, keep looking. They’re out there.
You’re Hiring for Consistency
At some point you will probably have to deal with turnover. It’s an inevitable part of any traditional business. What happens when your best developer accepts another job offer in the middle of the project? What happens if someone falls ill during a tight deadline?
What happens if your whole team quits because someone keeps bringing the wrong type of bagels to the meeting?
If you’re not prepared to handle any of these situations as is, hiring out is a great solution.
But Am I Ready?
Boy, you ask a lot of questions, but that’s okay.
Trust us, if you’ve resonated with anything we’ve said so far, you’re probably ready to outsource. But we know that sometimes finding the right team can be difficult, or maybe you want to avoid negative outcomes so you feel a little cautious.
Here are a few things you can do to successfully find the right third-party team:
If you think you can’t afford it… Take a good look at the projected cost of having an in-house team versus the value you’re receiving for keeping them around. A lot of people will turn their nose up at hiring out-of-house, but you can actually save quite a bit of money by outsourcing. The average in-house developer’s salary hovers around $100k per year, whereas by outsourcing you can find a team of people to work for you at much lower costs.
If you’re worried about consistency… By hiring a team of people as opposed to a freelancer or two, you’ll have a full skill set at your disposal without having to constantly search for new talent. You get one team, and they stick with you. Over time, they become familiar with your product and your workflow, and you get all the same benefits of an in-house team with half the hassle.
If you’re worried about your timeline… Sometimes creative types dance to their own rhythm, and your definition of when the project is “done” may differ from an outsider’s perspective. But you can easily overcome this by setting clear expectations both before and during the project, and by remembering that you have all the power here. If they’re not meeting your needs, you can walk. It’s also important to look for teams that have a track record of getting things done on time, so if you’re unsure, ask around.
We’re not saying that outsourcing is right for everyone, but speaking from experience (we are a third-party dev team, after all), there are a great many benefits to resourcing outside of your current pool of talent.
Maybe you have a great dev team but they’re overloaded, or you want them to focus on some specific projects. Hiring out lets you keep the burden off your team so you can build cool things without sacrificing your current talent.
Or maybe you don’t have a dev team at all and you were going to do everything yourself. To that we say, “Don’t do it!” Third-party dev teams are designed to help you, and if you find yourself needing a helping hand, don’t hesitate to ask.
And if you’re in need of a great WooCommerce site, our team of experts here at Saucal can help. Our team has been doing this for years, and we do it well, so don’t be shy about contacting us here. You won’t regret it.