You may have heard the two terms ‘outsourcing’ and ‘outstaffing’ before with regards to your business. However, there is a difference and far too often, these terms get confused or intertwined, but these actually mean completely different things.
To make things more complicated, the phrase ‘remote work’ usually finds it’s way into the conversation, too. Therefore, to help eliminate this confusion, and to see whether your company could benefit from outsourcing or outstaffing, we’ve written this article to explain these two concepts in more detail.
Outsourcing is the main method businesses adopt when seeking outside support or help. For example, suppose you’re looking for a software developer to create an intuitive app or platform for your business. Outsourcing means finding an individual or team to do the job.
These can both be freelancers or another business. For instance, using the same example, if you were to outsource your software needs, you could outsource to the BSPOKE Software team who would create your project in-house.
The important distinction to remember is that outsourcing is choosing one individual or one team, not handpicking multiple people to create your own team.
On the other hand, outstaffing is the process of putting a team together yourself. For example, let’s say your working on a creative project. You may outstaff to hire a freelance content writer, filmmaker, editor, and sound expert.
Pros and cons
There are both benefits and downsides to outsourcing and outstaffing, but your choice is entirely dependent on your situation and professional requirements for your project.
What you may not know is that sometimes companies, including software developers, outsource some of their work, too. This is something that BSPOKE Software does not need to do, as we have a team of developers with a full complement of skills, so you can trust our work is always done by an in-house development team.
For example, although you may outsource a project, the company you outsource to may also outsource or outstaff some of this work. This is done usually to add further expertise, reduce time, and increase the efficiency of the project. However, less reputable companies will outsource to low paid workers, whilst still charging you premium rates.
The next sections will explain both the benefits and downsides of both outsourcing and outstaffing.
What are the benefits of outsourcing?
Outsourcing and outstaffing share some of the same benefits. However, the distinct benefits of strictly outsourcing include:
- Outsourcing generally requires less effort
- Allows you to free up time for other projects
Firstly, when you outsource an entire project or piece of work, there is less effort on your part. For instance, when you outsource software development, you only really need to input the initial requirements, this frees up more time for you to focus on other projects.
Essentially, the main benefit of outsourcing is to set aside a project to a different team or individual to allow you to run your business and focus on different tasks.
What about the downsides?
Just because outsourcing has benefits, doesn’t mean it gets away easy; it has a few downsides, too. These downsides include:
- It can be more expensive than outstaffing
- You have to ensure you partner with the correct team
When outsourcing, this can be more expensive than handpicking a team of individuals with expertise. This is because the team is already assembled, and they have greater overhead costs. However, although usually, you will end up paying more, this does increase the efficiency of the project (e.g. you will be bothered less and not required to run the team yourself), which will save you time and this translates to money savings too.
To reduce the risk of selecting an incorrect partner, always ask for samples of work and a professional opinion on whether the expert has the ability to create software tailored to your requirements. Call BSPOKE Software today and speak to our consultant who will honestly assess whether, we would be a good fit for your software project.
What are the benefits of outstaffing?
Now that we’ve covered the benefits of outsourcing, let’s discuss the benefits of outstaffing. Some of these include:
- Handpick individuals, teams, and freelancers for their expertise
- This can sometimes be cheaper
Firstly, when you handpick individuals, teams, or freelancers, you can pick those with the most skills in a given niche or industry. Usually, when you select a team, they will have a variety of expertise, but selecting these yourself can sometimes be more cost-effective, and more tailored to your individual project.
What about the downsides?
Downsides of outstaffing include:
- All team members must work effectively together for the best results
- Requires more work
Finally, for outstaffing to be successful, all team members must work effectively together for the best results. This requires expert leadership, time, and communication. Often, this is not something a business has the capacity for and thus prefers outsourcing an entire project. Your team will need to learn to be a team, whereas with outsourcing the team you are hiring is already an established team.
With this being said, if you want to be more involved in your project, whether this is developing an app or a bespoke piece of software for your business, outstaffing might be the way to go. BSPOKE Software can help with all your development roles, so if your looking for outstaff or outsourcing give us a call today.
Where does remote work fit into this?
Both outsourcing and outstaffing can be done remotely. Thanks to advancements in technology, especially more recently. This provides you with access to greater expertise and a wider talent pool – there’s never been a better time than now to outsource or outstaff your next project.
There are benefits and downsides to both outsourcing and outstaffing. However, with this being said, most businesses and companies prefer outsourcing an entire project. This frees up more time and unloads stress, allowing a business and its team to focus on jobs more important, or essential to them.
If you are in the market for outsourcing custom software creation, be sure to contact the BSPOKE Software team. We have created various applications and software for a variety of businesses, some of which you can see by viewing our case studies.