In the 21st century, it has become crucial for businesses to operate to the high-tech needs of their customers. To be at a competitive edge, businesses need to go hand-in-hand with the latest and innovative technological advancements. For this, you need to have a powerful tech army at your business.
When you have skilled IT resources, they enable you to offer a matchless user experience for your customers and elevate customer satisfaction. The presence of expert IT staff in your team helps you cope with enhancing online competitiveness. Their expertise empowers you to overcome the challenges that arise because of changing market trends.
So, how can a company always have highly skilled tech experts on the team to address the arising challenges if hiring new resources is a cumbersome, lengthy, and costly process?
The solution here is Staff Augmentation. Staff augmentation is becoming a buzzword in the IT job market, attracting a lot of global businesses to hire remotely.
Let’s discuss staff augmentation, also known as team augmentation, and when and why you need to use it for your business.
What is Staff Augmentation?
Staff augmentation is a cost-effective and flexible outsourcing strategy whereby businesses hire tech talent globally from a third party on a contract basis. It provides adequate resources at the right moment for immediate and quicker working with not only startups and mid-tier but also larger enterprises and meets all your project objectives.
The internal staff of the company and the augmented staff work together for the project throughout its lifecycle. Outsourcing employees can work from their workplace or home according to their preferences.
Through staff augmentation, businesses get the most qualified employees on time without the hassle of a cumbersome and long recruitment process. Thus, it saves a lot of time and money. The enterprises can also grow or cut down the augmented team when required.
Hiring and retaining IT staff has always been a challenge for organizations. Although you may possess a competent in-house tech team, there are often times when multiple projects come your way. At times like these, your in-house team may not possess the bandwidth to deliver the projects in an effective and timely manner. This is what makes it compulsory for the presence of an additional workforce on a short or long-term basis for handling such projects.
When Do You Need Staff Augmentation?
When you already have an in-house team working on a project, why do you need to extend the team with professionals who will act as the steering wheel for another part?
As an organization, you might be working on an IT project, and the project requires you to hire new engineers for the team. Moreover, the skill set you need might be of another country’s standard, and thus you’ll need to hire from other locations.
Staff augmentation enables you to hire IT professionals on a temporary to cover the crucial positions in your team. It enables businesses to select candidates that fit their requirements, and they can extend or cut the augmented team whenever they want to. There are plenty of companies that offer staff augmentation services. These vendors help you add capable technical resources to your own in-house team.
Staff Augmentation Use Cases
- You need to hire a team of 3 to 8 IT professionals, but it’s difficult because of the shortage of talent in the local market.
- You are developing a tech product with a team of programmers, but you need to add new engineers to the team.
- You have a team of engineers working on a product, but you need to extend your team of programmers to develop another part of the product.
- Recruiting locally will take too long, and there are risks as well as strong demand on the market, making this option unviable.
- The programmers or engineers you intend to hire for your project are hard to find in your country, and you need to extend your search to other locations.
What are the Types of Staff Augmentation?
There are three types of staff augmentation categories. Organizations can choose the one that best fits their requirements. These categories are based on geographical differences:
1. Nearshore Augmentation
If companies want to hire IT experts that lie within or near their time zones but don’t have any specific country preference, they can opt for nearshore staff augmentation.
Significant issues arise when employees in a team are working in different time zones. In this situation, nearshore hiring helps to avoid such issues. In terms of cost, nearshore hiring is a cost-effective option as compared to in-country (onshore) augmentation. However, it is still a more expensive choice than offshore team augmentation.
2. Offshore Augmentation
Offshore staff augmentation is the most widely adopted type of team augmentation. It enables employers to hire from a diverse global talent pool and scale the costs. The hired experts can be from any country having the relevant infrastructural requirements.
One of the drawbacks of this type of resource augmentation is the cultural and language barrier that can lead to difficulties in communication. However, this issue is not very common. Another drawback is the time zone difference – this may lead to difficulties in collaboration.
3. Onshore Augmentation
This type of staff augmentation is from within the country your company works in. One of the advantages of onshore or in-country augmentation is that there is no language barrier.
So, this is the preferred hiring model for roles that need strong communication. However, it’s the most expensive type of augmentation, as other countries (typically developing countries) offer more affordability. Also, there is somewhat restriction on the talent pool as well.
What is a Staff Augmentation Strategy?
It is crucial to have an appropriate external staffing strategy in place to harness the available resources’ skills. You need to ask the augmented team about their past experiences, what type of clients they have worked with, the relevant projects they have been involved in, and so on.
Here are the key factors you need to consider while screening for team augmentation candidates.
Hiring Capacity and Volume
While opting for staff augmentation practices, ask the vendor about how many consultants they have deployed currently. To be thorough enough, you can even ask for the relevant evidence. Besides that, you can also ask for an account of new consultants the vendor has worked with within the last year. By doing this, you can get an idea regarding the volume of business they have been engaged with.
Basic Filtering of Vendors
The initial filtering process involves finding out the duration for which the vendor has been in the business. Focus on the experience of the company rather than the experience of individuals. You should ensure that the vendor you’re choosing has been consistent in the industry and possesses adequate expertise to strengthen your business.
Moreover, make sure that the particular vendor has worked in business environments similar to yours. You can meet some of the vendor staff or try to access the senior management. Many companies offshore the initial sourcing of candidates. The overall turnover of your business matters when you are considering profitability. Another vital aspect is to check whether the company has insurance or not.
The recruitment process is the initial part of the strategy, and along with that, you have to measure the success of the working staff. It is crucial to classify the depth of the process and access the quality checkpoints keenly.
In order to ensure the quality of staffing, you can ask different questions that the candidates face during the screening process. Simultaneously, you need to evaluate the overall productivity increment while hiring the resources.
How Does Staff Augmentation Work?
Staff augmentation adds to the team you already have. As firms have an option of hiring contractually through vendors, they can hire professionals for just the duration of a project. The employees also contend with this approach as the vendors assign them to a different team once the contract duration ends.
The reason for the popularity of staff augmentation in recent times is due to the rising trend of working remotely since the COVID-19 pandemic. Because of the lockdown, businesses were unable to find the right skill set, and they started using a resource that was at a considerable distance from them.
Outsourcing partners helped at this time by identifying professionals who have all the infrastructural requirements to work remotely. Additionally, these experts excel when it comes to communication. Thus, online interactions and distance don’t become a hurdle when it comes to delivering quality work.
Staff augmentation is the perfect solution to administrative challenges and empowers organizations to hire experienced and professional individuals on a contract basis. Otherwise, they would have to recruit employees with the right skill set and offer full-time positions to employees in a time when business uncertainty is high.
Staff Augmentation Framework
Determine Your Requirements
You need to determine the number of hires. Come up with an accurate number after discussing it with your management. You also need to define the specifications of the candidates like qualifications, expertise, years of experience, and many more.
Select and Assess
After clearly reviewing the requirements, the next step is to initiate the assessment and selection process. Assess all the available candidates eligible according to your requirements through tests and interviews.
Assimilation of New Team Members
Hiring is not enough. You need to ensure that the candidates are comfortable and they easily integrate into your company’s culture. Also, ensure that all the new employees are fully aware of the company’s rules, values, and procedures.
Continuous Support and Nurture
You need to provide continuous support to the new staff, even after the integration phase ends. You can ask for their feedback in order to establish a strong relationship.
How Does Staff Augmentation Economize Your Cost?
Staff augmentation in tech industry economizes 80% of your cost because, in it, there’s no:
- Infrastructure expenditure
- Software licensing costs
- Payroll management costs
- Legal & administration costs
Is Staff Augmentation the Precise Option for Your Organization?
There are various situations where staff augmentation is the perfect solution for ensuring a successful future for your business. It can be a hassle-free and cost-saving option for your organization that helps you focus on the core operations of your business.
If you’re working on a project with a strict deadline, staff augmentation offers extra resources quickly. You can find the right people in less time and create customized contracts that last until you deliver the project.
It also helps you to diversify your team. You can easily find programmers who have past experience in the type of product you’re working on or engineers who are specialists in a specific field. It is the best and quickest solution to add the required expertise to your team.
Teams that need frequent correspondence and direct communication prefer staff augmentation to simple outsourcing practices. In project outsourcing, the organization doesn’t have direct contact with the third party they hire. Whereas, with staff augmentation, the hired resource is actually a part of your team, rather than just being managed by a third-party.
What are the Benefits of Staff Augmentation?
1. Uplifts the Recruitment Process
Recruitment is a monotonous process and can take months, particularly when you search for upper-level candidates with unconventional abilities. However, you can shorten the recruitment time from months to weeks and even days with staff augmentation.
Augmentation specialists have updated databases having a pool of highly skilled IT talents you can choose from. It offers the advantage of faster hiring of capable candidates by the augmentation company, saving your precious time. The dedicated resource provider does the following for you:
- Background checks
All these make a perfect solution for you to solve your tech shortage problem quickly.
2. No More Legal Hassles
While hiring in-house employees, there is a lot of paperwork and legal responsibilities. In staff augmentation, the outsourcing company takes full charge of the regular duties such as taxes, payroll management, employee benefits, and many more.
3. Higher Flexibility
Staff augmentation brings flexibility for IT companies as it helps add more resources in less time if there is any unexpected workload ahead. Also, the company is not tied to these employees and it won’t need them for months and can scale up or down whenever it wants.
4. Reduced Development Cost
The most apparent and biggest benefit of staff augmentation is cost savings in all situations. When you recruit augmented teams from countries with less cost of living, it will save money because the candidates are likely to demand lower salaries compared to candidates from developed countries.
Comparatively, hiring in-house employees costs a lot as it includes extra costs of taxes, employee benefits, and many more. There will be extra costs like equipment, taxes, and infrastructure.
5. Bring in New Creative Ideas
For a successful and evolving organization, there must be a constant supply of innovative ideas to sustain its success. Staff augmentation enables organizations to work with a diverse set of experts who bring in new creative ideas. You can welcome new concepts and ideas with project-specific hiring to enhance your business operations.
6. Conquer Geographical Limitations
Many enterprises are facing the challenge of extracting the right resources locally at the right price. Staff augmentation is the helping hand in this regard that allows you to recruit needed yet skilled specialists in different regions without searching for them yourself.
7. Reshape and Expand
Enterprises aim to expand their businesses, but the risk of failure associated with growth discourages them from taking this step. Such companies get support from staff augmentation. Businesses can stick to a flexible hiring model for scaling their business on a try-out basis, and they won’t have to make huge investments in a full-scale workforce. Thus, this approach helps companies to test their efficacy in different industries.
8. Steady Authority
Businesses keep control over their management with staff augmentation. When you outsource the project, all the project handling is done by an external unit. However, with the augmentation approach, the company is still in charge of management and execution and holds the power to make the final call.
9. Enhanced Productivity Level
Staff augmentation enables a higher productivity level because the engineers and developers focus on a single project. In contrast, a project outsourcing team manages several projects simultaneously. Working just for one client and following their vision leads to higher dedication and motivation levels.
What Are the Features of a Reliable Staff Augmentation Service?
As we have discussed the benefits of team augmentation services, now you need to know what the must-have features you should look for in a vendor. These features help you choose the right service and leverage maximum value out of this setup. Some of these features are:
Wide Range of Skillset
If the staff augmentation vendor cannot provide the individuals with exact expertise in the area that you require, there is no use in reaching out to them.
A vendor might provide you with individuals with similar expertise. But it will take a lot of time to train them. Therefore, you need to look only for resources that have the accurate skillset, along with other things. It will ensure that you don’t have to face any performance degradation issues or operational hurdles while hiring remote teams.
When choosing a vendor, you need to ensure that it is a reputable one. The budget can be an important concern. But you can face the consequences if you hire people who can’t perform according to your expectations.
So, always look for vendors having a global influence, such as Xavor Corporation. Xavor has been offering team augmentation services to companies all over the globe for over 27 years. And all the big names have faith in Xavor. It also influences your customers, knowing that you work with people from a reputable organization.
Reliable and Quick
One of the essential features is the speed of the vendor. If they take too much time to provide the matching resources, your project timeline will suffer, and it also hurts customer expectations. Therefore, always opt to work with organizations that offer quicker and more reliable services.
Team augmentation can be the ultimate option for companies and guarantees a great deal of flexibility and cost-efficiency. It is an efficient way to resolve complex hiring problems. It is also critical to hire a well-reputed staff augmentation vendor who helps you get the most out of this strategy.
Xavor Corporation holds nearly three decades long experience in staff augmentation and outsourcing. We offer expert guidance with competent assistance to fill the staffing gaps of enterprises. Fortune 500 enterprises have trust in the team of experts Xavor provides them with.
Reach out to [email protected] and address your hiring needs with a reliable staff augmentation partner.