So you’ve moved your development off-shore, hows that working out for you?

Human resources are essential for any successful business. It takes time, effort and no small amount of money to seek out the best talent for your company. However, when it comes to building an IT team, things get a lot  more complicated for smaller businesses with their relatively limited resources. On the other hand, many businesses need a tailor-made computing environment complete with customised software designed to meet a very specific set of goals.

Easily one of the toughest decisions when it comes to software development work and systems maintenance is choosing between outsourcing the work offshore or keeping it on-premise. Determining the right solution often presents a major headache for business leaders and executives, not least because both options present their pros and cons. Here at Wakefield-Smith, we do both so, to start with, let’s take a look at which solution is best for you.

In-House Development Teams

By far the most significant advantage of hiring an in-house development team is that you’re far less likely to run into communication issues. Instead, you have a much higher degree of control over how your development projects are handled, and the rest of your team will be in a better position to retain some of the knowledge acquired during the process. In-house development ultimately translates into a long-term investment with the most consistent results.

In-house developers are much more likely to understand the direction of your business to the extent that they’ll better understand your goals and priorities. If you decide it’s time for a change in direction, an in-house team will also be better positioned to accommodate you. By contrast, outsourcing your development team offshore means you might have to start over if you decide to take a completely different course.

Unfortunately, hiring an in-house development team does come with some major drawbacks, especially in the case of smaller businesses that simply cannot afford to hire full-time employees to see to their IT and development needs. Sometimes, you might not have enough work available to warrant one or more full-time positions, complete with health insurance and other benefits. One way around this is to hire self-employed contractors on a short-term basis.

Outsourced Development Teams

Thanks to online collaboration platforms and widespread internet access, outsourcing has become a far more affordable alternative to hiring the in-house talent that you need to keep up with the bigger competitors. Outsourcing development work offshore can dramatically cut your overheads even further, since it’s often possible to find talented developers in other countries that charge a mere fraction of the price of local developers.

Outsourcing to remote development teams is also much more flexible than hiring people on a contract basis, short-term or otherwise. As such, you can easily increase or decrease workloads as your projects require. In other words, you will only need to pay for the talent when you need it. There’s also the major advantage of being able to make use of talent all over the world, rather than being restricted by geographical boundaries.

One of the biggest drawbacks of offshoring is logistics. The internet might make everything easier, but you still need a secure and reliable way to exchange information and review projects as they’re in progress. Modern technology can help overcome many of these limitations, but you’ll ultimately have less control over production quality. Additionally, if you’re the one responsible for managing an outsourced development team, you’ll also have to think about long-term IT support.

So Which Solution Is Best for Me?

As you can see, both options have their pros and cons. Your decision will be based partly on your budgetary limitations and on the nature of the project itself. An in-house development teams tends to present the better choice when you need to implement a solid foundation with ongoing support for years to come. If, however, you don’t mind an approach that involves rapid prototyping and a significantly reduced upfront expense, then outsourcing offshore might be just what you need.

Here at Wakefield-Smith, we understand that every software development  project comes with its own set of goals and requirements. That’s why we offer both in-house development and support as well as outsourced solutions working with some of the top talent from around the world.