Web developers are programmers who specialize in creating any Internet-related service: websites, single-page applications, data-driven APIs, etc. Many modern software products eventually become cloud-based or somehow connected to the Internet. As a result, every organization needs web developers: large and small companies, public and private enterprises, NGOs, educational institutions, and, of course, startups; none of these are excluded.
Web developing roles make up the top in-demand jobs worldwide. However, hiring for these roles may be an intricate task. This article will tell you about different roles developers can perform for your project's benefit and the key factors you should consider.
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The project cost, development and implementation time, and the overall result depend on who you entrust your project with. The two main options are hiring your company's in-house team and finding freelancers for certain projects. Each approach has its pros and cons.
1. In-House Employment
Hiring a staff member should mean they meet all of your company's requirements. They are always available for all the necessary tasks, even the urgent ones. You don't have to search for new contacts every time and explain the company's aims to new people. If you're lucky to find a reliable in-house employee, they’ll provide very valuable assistance in promoting your business.
In-House Employment Pros
- Staff members are usually highly motivated. They pay more attention to the company's needs and show genuine interest in achieving better results. In-house employees also have a certain level of job security. They enjoy the company's benefits and ease of working in a well-established team.
- The communication between teams and departments is usually better. Better communication ensures higher productivity. People working at the same office collectively look for solutions to atypical problems, discuss tasks, and resolve misunderstandings.
- The team is available in the long run. Employees stay loyal for years to companies that provide good working conditions. This fact further reduces communication gaps and enables long-term growth.
In-House Employment Cons
- Compared to other options, this one leads to most expenses. The key argument here is not only budget costs. It's also about management costs, expenses on providing decent working conditions, keeping specialists loyal with additional benefits, and much more. Plus, a good developer's salary in your region alone can cost you a king's ransom.
- Picking the right people is a challenging task. The recruiting process takes a long time and a lot of effort. Some candidates with all the necessary skills may be too expensive, and some candidates may turn out to not be the right fit after signing a contract.
- You need a continuous task flow. You need to make sure you have other projects for your in-house developers' team. Otherwise, you risk paying their salaries when they have nothing to do.
- Developers’ migration can harm your business processes. In-house employment provides better availability of the team members. However, people tend to change jobs eventually - and you might find yourself in a no-win situation losing a valuable team member. If the company is only growing or going through difficult times, it may result in chaos when you have to deal with new team members and nobody to catch them up with the company's state of affairs.
Hiring a qualified in-house team is an option for a large business if you have the budget to keep the team in the company. Keeping the ship afloat alone is a burden. That is why most small companies and startups prefer to hire a minimum number of in-house employees, particularly if they cannot ensure constant task flow or payment consistency.
2. Independent Contractors
Independent contractors don't belong to your company team; they work with businesses on a project-by-project basis. It might be tricky to find a good freelancer. But having a contact list of freelance-based professionals may help you save up on the budget for your next project.
Independent Contracting Pros
- Independent contractors are budget-friendly. It's the most popular option, first of all, for financial reasons. Many have flexible rates, and you can always negotiate the workflow and prices. Besides, you can find high-class specialists from economic regions very different from yours. It usually means a win-win situation for payment agreements - your smaller budget may still be somebody's good income.
- Independent contracting means low management costs. In this working relationship, you don't have to come up with extra benefits or job protection. Often, contractors organize their work conditions themselves. You only need to make sure they receive the agreed payments on time.
Independent Contracting Cons
- In many cases, there are no guarantees. Freelancers may stop answering your messages and calls, break deadlines, quit everything, and move to Bali. There are plenty of reasons this type of employment may result in unfinished projects and extra complications.
- Contractors may have low or inconsistent coding standards. Having someone on a project-by-project basis means that you'll eventually hire other people to work with the existing code of your web-product. Even if you find a decent developer, there's still the risk of sloppy jobs and little responsibility. Whatever mistakes they make – it won’t be the same people to fix it.
- Contractors-powered projects are difficult to scale. When you hire a contract developer, you get one person. But soon you may need more people, like designers or quality assurance specialists. Often, it implies extra effort for training and linking all specialists together.
Hiring independent contractors are a good option for smaller projects with limited budgets. They are the best fit for one-time, urgent tasks or tasks requiring an extra team member when you are not hiring. There's always a probability of offering such a specialist a permanent position. But again, it might be a risky way.
3. Outsourcing Agency Contract
Many companies choose the third option, a middle ground between an in-house team and independent contracting. Outsourcing agencies provide fully functional teams ready to jump in and take over even large and adventurous projects.
Outsourcing Agency Contract Pros
- Minimum management costs. Services of a team lead and project manager are often offered alongside developers to take care of the smooth workflow.
- You don't need an in-house team budget. You can even find an outstanding team in a different economic region. It allows cutting budgets significantly.
- You get a well-built and experienced team without extra effort. It's a safe way - you sign a contract and get updated about the progress. If anything goes wrong, in most cases, you can terminate the contract and your partnership.
Outsourcing Agency Contract Cons
- The teams are not always what they seem. Good advertising does wonders. The agency may appear to have a large team of high-class professionals and turn out to be a couple of subcontracting freelancers. Choosing your agency can be challenging and requires careful consideration.
- Contract termination is a mutual prerogative. In some cases, the agency may end your partnership before finishing the project.
- Some agencies may not be able to handle long-term projects. Although every agency is interested in long-term partnerships, not all of them have the capabilities to handle such projects. This is especially relevant to young companies with limited human resources.
Team Structure and Specialization
Web development is a complex, multi-layered process with many essential stages. It requires solid planning, proper testing, and considerable results analysis. Besides, such projects need strong leadership - to manage specialists, monitor the process, and control the results.
To ensure your project's success, you need to build a structured team of professionals where every member has their responsibilities and tasks. Exceed Team has a conventional division of IT teams according to the activity types.
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1. Software Developers
Backend development is responsible for the server-side of a product. It refers to the data access layer. Backend developers implement the website business logic – processes of storing and accessing the data, drawing relations between it, calculating values, getting insights, and many other tasks. These processes are hidden from the user's eyes and happen outside your computer and browser.
Frontend development is responsible for user interface functionality. It refers to the representation layer and the client-side of a website or application and includes everything a user sees or interacts with. To create a convenient and demanded product, frontend developers cooperate with backend programmers, designers, and UX-analysts.
This division is usually the best fit for large-scale projects. Most mid-size and small projects require the same specialists in full-stack roles addressing ranging tasks from both backend and frontend.
2. Quality Assurance
After reaching some scale, any project would require involving quality assurance (QA) engineers. QA professionals test software functionality at the development stage to improve its quality. They perform manual and automated testing, send back tasks that need improvements, and make sure new features don't interfere with the existing ones' performance.
3. Team Leader
Whether your IT team is large or small, our most meaningful advice is to have an in-house team leader. This way, you make sure the specialist responsible for all your development projects is in line with the company policy and progress. The team leader's main responsibility is to provide flawless communication between the IT team and the rest of your company. You don't have to translate separate tasks for each team member, as long as the team leader promotes the project's goals.
Is an Outsourcing Agency the Best Option?
By choosing an outsourcing agency, you avoid the main drawback of having an in-house team and hiring independent contractors – yet, you get to enjoy their advantages. You don't have to spend time managing your project - our specialists take care of everything. As a result, you get a high-quality product worth its cost.
Read also: How much does it cost to create a streaming service like Netflix, Disney+ or TikTok apps?
When signing a contract, the agency undertakes to fulfill its obligations: terms, volume, and quality. Collaboration with the agency also allows you to control the project implementation at each development stage. A carefully chosen agency can become your cost-effective and long-term partner.
2. Easy Communication
The agency's project manager oversees the entire workflow: monitors deadlines, shows interim results, tracks payments, etc. You connect directly to the project manager, who translates your needs and aims to the developers and makes sure you get the final product as desired. This way, you don't have to worry about each team member or invest your time in team management - everything's done for you by assigned professionals.
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3. Development and Support
The agency provides different specialists' expertise. If a QA engineer or a designer wouldn't be part of your in-house budget, the outsourcing agency can include all the necessary team members according to your project's aims and your company's needs.
Outsourcing studios proved to be the easiest and most cost- and time-efficient option if you have a large and complex project comprising many stages, but your business planning doesn't include creating an IT department, and you don't have the resources to manage a team of independent contractors. We suggest that this is the safe option if your business’ success depends directly on them.
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