Modern problems require modern solutions. Emergency and scalable recruitment options are a business’s biggest concern, and they require immediate attention and solution. In-house recruitment could be a pain when an employee lands you in deep waters by leaving in the middle of an ongoing project. It could be time-demanding, effort-taking, and costly because senior-level developers and IT engineers are not available on the sidewalks so conveniently. Not every company is equipped with the resources and capital to handle pressures at the eleventh hour and afford IT solutions with minimal effort. Only IT staff augmentation could salvage your company in unpredictable, emergency, and unprecedented situations.
IT staff augmentation is an ideal hiring model that calls for in-house expansion with lesser time and expenses. It allows organizations to extend teams, hire experts and professionals, and scale the workforce whenever needed. Staff augmentation is a way of outsourcing your projects and tasks with minimal effort and resources. This is the most practical and smart approach to saving your project. In this article, we will discuss the basic principles of IT staff augmentation, how it works, different types, benefits, and the lesser talked about challenges. Let’s see what is staff augmentation capable of.
What are the Operating Principles of IT Staff Augmentation?
The concept of increasing temporary resources is not an old one but rather more popular nowadays. The primary reason for the growing inclination of companies towards this outsourcing approach is the growing software market. More people are reliant on technology, and technology only works with the efforts of trained IT professionals. The global revenue for the software market was above $968.25 billion, according to a recent finding by Statista. The numbers hint at exponential growth in the future too.
The guiding principles of IT staff augmentation dictate that it is a cooperation model. Based on the cooperative measures, the company leverages support from external resources. It does so by extending its in-house team through temporary hiring. The synchronization and cooperation between the added resource and team result in collaborative efforts of the entire IT team for fulfilling IT goals.
To get a better sense of resource addition, consider the example of a common task at the workplace. Let’s say you need to update an internal CRM. But your team does not have the required specialists, skills, and experience to carry out the job. What approach do you follow? The need is urgent as one of your clients or customers is demanding a quick fix, and you are left with limited options, which could be expensive. You seek assistance from an outsourcing vendor or agency that specializes in software development services. Instead of going through the painstaking process of hiring, recruitment, onboarding, etc., you outsource your tasks to the ones most apt for the job.
The outsourcing vendor or company augments your team by supplying you with an individual or a team of competent engineers and developers. Since these are already on the panel of outsourcing agencies, you can trust their craft and competency to deal with IT matters.
What are the Types of IT Staff Augmentation?
Before choosing the team or individuals necessary for the task, you must familiarize yourself with the types to make an informed decision. After all, adding a resource to your team is not a joke. There are two categories or types of resource augmentation models. One is short-term hiring, and the other is obviously long-term. Short-term type is usually on a small scale, for small projects and tasks, and in situations when the in-house resources are unavailable or not enough. The long-term approach works best when a company needs to fill a skill gap, cut down costs, and work on a long-term project. You can further divide the augmentation model into three broad categories.
- Commodity: It is apt for situations when a company requires resources for non-skilled jobs such as manufacturing or warehouse work, physical labor, etc.
- Skill-based: It works best when there is a need for a reliable team or individual to complete skilled tasks and operations such as spreadsheet use, typing, etc.
- Highly skilled: This is appropriate for advanced skills and crafts for tech tasks that are learning-based and require skills, experience, and extensive training.
When Staff Augmentation Services Used?
Staff augmentation services and solutions are meant for different business domains, reasons, and situations. Companies opt for resource addition under the following circumstances:
1. The company requires additional hands for the job
When a company already has an in-house team but wants to have more employee opinion and skills for better performance, it goes for staff augmentation. The company aims to obtain more resources capable of performing high-tech tasks and functions for tech-intensive fields such as blockchain, IoT, etc.
2. There is an emergency to expand the resources
IT-related jobs and projects often create a sense of emergency. They only need to be dealt with with utmost care, skill, and experience. Therefore, finding the right resource for tech-savvy jobs could be a mammoth task. What would you do if a sudden need to hire an expert and professional arises? The staff addition model will work for you in such a situation by finding a suitable resource in lesser time with exemplary tech skills.
3. The company requires experience and expertise
There are certain tasks and projects which could only use help from experienced, skilled, and trained professionals. No other characteristic could replace these three prerequisites. In urgent and tech-intensive projects, there is no time to train the resource to get the project kicking. So, companies wish to hire an individual that can adapt fast, learn on their own, and take on the role with minimum guidance. These things only come with experience and expertise.
What are the Benefits of IT Staff Augmentation?
There are several benefits of IT staff augmentation, some of them are quite obvious, like no hardware development cost, no taxes, etc. Let’s look at some of the non-obvious and most effective advantages of external hiring.
When a company goes for full-time and in-house recruitment, it requires ample resources (manpower, time, effort) and capital. As mentioned earlier, that is not always an ideal option and situation. Staff augmentation saves your resources and money by connecting you to a panel of experienced and trained IT professionals. The outsourcing agency does all the dirty work, time, and effort-intensive tasks for you and presents you with the right talent. It exempts you from going through all that pain and effort. Thus, a company saves a lot of resources while following the resource augmentation approach.
With resource augmentation, a company has the liberty and flexibility to hire as many IT experts as it needs. Scaling the resources up and down depends on the recruiter’s discretion. The company can have two software engineers on the team and may choose to let go of one or add a new one as deemed necessary. The augmentation model is also customizable and flexible when it comes to budgeting. The outsourcing vendor and your company can agree upon payment terms and conditions.
3. High Productivity
The most distinctive and sought-after benefit of augmentation is high productivity. When a team of hired individuals focuses completely on the assigned project, the in-house team will dedicate their entire time, energy, and effort to other business-crucial tasks. This practice and correlation will increase the productivity levels of both teams. The in-house and temporary resources work simultaneously on different projects but with more commitment and focus.
What are the Cons or Challenges of IT Staff Augmentation?
The concept of additional and external hiring would not be complete without the mention of its challenges to help organizations make informed decisions. Following are some of the challenges of staff augmentation.
1. Language and Time Constraints
The biggest challenge a management company could face is the time and language barrier. Companies nowadays recruit globally. Your resource could be sitting in a different time zone and may have a different language. This could create inconsistencies in the workflow because you may not be able to entirely understand their language. Chances of miscommunication and misunderstanding are high with language barriers. Also, if time zones are different, the company may have a hard time reaching the individual or setting up a meeting.
2. Security Issues
Security issues are paramount when dealing with temporary workers. The security and confidentially of the client and the project could not be risked at any cost. But unfortunately, there are high chances of that happening. The hiring companies have to take security audits, make frequent visits, and address common security threats to avoid unpleasant situations with the hired resources. Obtain all the NDA and contracts before allowing an outsider to work on your tasks. The company is not exempted from security checks and audits when it chooses to hire through an outsourcing agency.
Hiring an outsider for your tech-savvy and complicated tasks is never an easy process. A lot of apprehensions, considerations, and complications may follow. It is important to audit the situation and be deliberate with the entire process beforehand. calculate the risks and benefits of resource augmentation before treading forward.
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