When a company decides to outsource their software development, they face a difficult choice. With a multitude of options on the market, ranging from onshore software development firms to offshore and nearshore to individually contracted freelancers, leaders need to look at all the facts before committing to one alternative over another.
A while back, an acquaintance of ours came to us with a burning question. She was trying to decide whether it was better to hire a software team using an on-demand freelance website, or if she should opt for a team abroad contracted through a proper company. Both options were very attractive to her, especially the savings they represented in contrast to an onshore outsourcing firm in the US, but she needed to determine how to weigh either alternative to choose the right one.
Considerations Beyond Price ?
Choosing a Global Software Development Partner to Accelerate Your Digital Strategy
To be successful and outpace the competition, you need a software development partner that excels in exactly the type of digital projects you are now faced with accelerating, and in the most cost effective and optimized way possible.
There’s no cookie-cutter answer to our acquaintance’s question. There are lots of factors to consider when it comes to making the right decision.So, we decided to analyze the pros and cons of going with a freelance team and contrast them to the pros and cons of using a software development outsourcing model.
This is what we found:
The Case for Hiring Freelancers Online
Sites that gather freelance developers can offer cheaper rates than established firms thanks to light overhead (no location costs, rent costs, insurance fees, training expenses, etc.)
Fast Hiring Process
|Disjointed Team Dynamics
When you need to hire more than one resource, and then have them work together, a freelance team that doesn’t share a company culture is more likely to drop the ball, assign blame, and end up causing delays due to miscommunication. You also run the risk of losing knowledge if one or more of your freelance resources leaves the project.
The Case for Hiring a Software Development Outsourcing Company
with a firm from another country means overhead costs are lower (you save 40-100%
versus hiring with a local firm.) There’re also
the added advantages of hiring a consolidated company that include:
Similar time zones
If your firm is in a time zone with over 3 hours difference, the benefit of “time zone compatibility” may lose its edge; you can experience some lag in communication and projects can slow down.
More Expensive than Freelance
Longer hiring times
The right solution for your outsourcing needs is going to come down to your business’ specific traits. From this specific situation we see that:
- Hiring freelancers works best on small, short-term projects. Longer, larger projects benefit more from hiring a software outsourcing firm that can manage accountability, churn, knowledge-perpetuation and team challenges.
- Onshore freelancers do, in fact, result in 30-50% savings in comparison to onshore firms, but a nearshore software development firm in a developing country can also be as—if not more—cost-effective.
- Hiring onshore freelancers can produce highly capable specialists quickly, but the freelancing model isn’t built for the long-term. It doesn’t provide a cohesive culture, team monitoring and accountability that a corporate environment can; so, developing a line of business with freelancers may not be the wisest choice.
Ultimately, your project will benefit from a committed team in the long run but bringing in help when there are very specific requirements that can be completed quickly can be handled by freelancers. However, counting on a long-term partner will ensure your project benefits of the attention to detail and drive to continuously improve that goes beyond doing what’s expected.
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