IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide
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IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

54% of businesses face a talent shortage globally, preventing them from expanding.
As per a recent study focused on the global talent shortage, there will be about 85 million job positions that would remain unfilled by 2030 – Korn Ferry Research.

Yes, this is worrisome and talent shortage appears to be a real challenge that IT leaders will have to battle for long!

Is there any way around to battle the talent shortage?

There is a proven and reliable alternative to hunt down talent shortages.

It’s IT Staff Augmentation.

Building teams towards a common goal is undoubtedly the best way around to achieve your IT goals. But, when the odds are against you, as a leader you have to look out for alternatives, the best one for that matter.

IT Staff Augmentation is one of the most efficient ways to propel you toward your IT goal.

Let’s understand it in and out before you decide on it.

Table of Contents

01. What is IT Staff Augmentation, and How does it work?

02. How is IT Staff Augmentation advantageous for your business?

03. Pros & Cons of Staff Augmentation Services

04. How to choose the right Staff Augmentation Provider?

05. What is the right time to rope in Staff Augmentation Services?

06. Steps to Follow for a Successful IT Staff Augmentation

07. Why choose Integrative Systems as your IT Staff Augmentation Service Provider?

IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

1. What is IT Staff Augmentation, and How does it work?

Not to complicate it any further, IT Staff Augmentation is yet another type of outsourcing model that lets you hire IT talent as an extension to your in-house team, irrespective of the location constraint.

As I mentioned, it’s just another type of IT outsourcing. Typically, when you outsource an IT development project, you are given a stipulated timeline and a fixed budget; depending upon the working model you choose.

Wherein Staff Augmentation allows you to hire a dedicated team of experts, working for you round the clock. It’s more like having an in-house team away from your vicinity.

Quick Example

Let’s assume that you have initiated an IT development project and you have an in-house team of 4 developers. You know that the project demands a couple of UI designers and a full-stack developer to support the initiative.

In this case, rolling out the requirement to the HR team, sourcing candidates, and interviewing them is a tedious route to take.

Instead, you can look out for the best IT staff augmentation services provider and hire the required talent for a specified time and get going with your project.

Trust us on this, it will save you a considerable amount of time, costs and efforts.

The Software Development Outsourcing industry is expected to grow by 70% by 2023, as companies are projected to outsource at least 36% of their software developers – Commit.

It’s a win-win deal to take and you can make the most of it when you choose the right staff augmentation provider.

2. How is IT Staff Augmentation advantageous for your business?

Building teams is never easy! Agreed?

Building teams with a bare minimum to no technical proficiencies, how does this sound? Even worse, isn’t it?

Now that’s the exact position that you never want to be in but ultimately end up being in.

How?

When you roll out hiring requirements, there are fair chances of getting the wrong fit for the proposed role.

We are not saying that you don’t have the required technical proficiencies at all, but to face the fact hiring for technical roles is a task and demands in-depth expertise before you decide on a right fit candidate.

Where on the other hand, if you go for IT staff augmentation services, you get full access to the expertise of top tech talent with minimal hiring efforts. And, we are sure as a proficient IT leader, you would always decide in the favour of the betterment of your organization.

Now, let’s understand all the great benefits that IT Staff Augmentation brings to the table.

IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

Leverage the global pool of Expertise:

Geographic Location has always been a factor to limit the talent scouting when hiring for top positions, especially tech positions.

With outsourcing services spreading its roots all over the globe, access to the global talent pool has become very much attainable now.

IT leaders had to settle down for less than what they are looking for due to talent pool shortages in their locale. IT staff augmentation services enabled them to glide through the global pool of top talent and hire the right candidates for the desired roles.

Maximized Innovation at Optimum Prices

This one is the most appreciated advantage that IT staff augmentation brings up, innovation at optimum costs!

No leader in the world would say no to cost savings besides the access to top-notch innovation.

Opening doors to possibilities creates a leeway for you to land a better hire for the desired role and that is yet another great advantage IT staff augmentation brings up.

With no geographical barriers, you can better decide over expertise than costs. You are open to connecting with staff augmentation providers who specialize in your domain and find experienced IT talent to work on your project.

Innovation happens when there is room for experiments and you don’t need us to tell you that experience is the key to successful experiments.

Scale the Teams Up & Down as Required

Building teams doesn’t come easy.

Going further, maintaining the team in a good shape for a long while is more difficult than ever.

And, cutting down talent from your well-groomed team is the most difficult task that an IT leader might want to do, of course, when the team is in a good shape.

Flexibility is not what you get when you engage an employee in a full-time employment model.

Let’s understand how

Let’s assume you hire an in-house team of 10 which consists of 6 developers and 4 UI designers for your next project.

After a year, your project reaches a level where you don’t require more than 3 developers and 2 UI designers.

In this case, what would you do?

Would you cut the team in a good shape that has worked for you and helped you build your project? Let’s say, you have to take this route.

There comes a situation in the near future when you again need a couple of developers and UI designers. Now what? Would you again hire new people?

What impact would it have on the team?

Not so great, right?

IT staff augmentation resolves this riddle for you with its flexibility. You can scale your team size up and down as and when required and pay for the man-hours that you engage the team for.

Hassle-Free Recruitment:

Let us ask you a simple question, How long would it take to hire for an open tech position at your business?

Roughly, around 25 days, correct? And then what about their notice period?

And, now could you tell us how long would it take to be able to gauge if you have hired the right candidate?

A better question would be, how much of your money would be at stake if you hire the wrong candidate?

The average cost of hiring the wrong candidate, depending on the role and the company can go as high as $240000, as per 2021 research by the US Department of Labor.

Beyond all of this, your recruitment and HR team has to collaborate on multiple things such as on-boarding new candidates, equipping them with the right resources, maintaining a payroll, recreational activities, planning for retention strategies, and whatnot.

All this hassle of recruitment and retention can be avoided with a single decision by opting for staff augmentation services.

All you have to do is find the right staff augmentation provider with a proven track record and you are all set for your project.

3. Pros & Cons of Staff Augmentation Services

Every coin has two faces, and so does Staff Augmentation.

Let’s understand the Pros and Cons of IT Staff Augmentation Services.

Pros of IT Staff Augmentation

Proven Expertise:

With IT staff augmentation services you can leverage domain-specific or technology-specific expertise and make the most out of it to build a concrete project. You get to choose from a diverse pool of talent besides the portfolios of candidates to compare and choose the best fit for your project.

No Training Costs:

Unlike in-house team building, you don’t have to train the augmented teams from the scratch. In the beginning, you have a role to play to set the right environment up and some warm-up rounds at specific intervals to check the progress. You don’t have to bear any upfront training costs as such.

Complete Administrative Support:

When you work with a staff augmentation provider, you are assured of complete administrative support for the number of IT staff you augment for your business. Right from the payroll to paperwork, everything is taken care of by the staffing vendor while you are focused on business operations and growth opportunities.

IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

Cons of IT Staff Augmentation

Communication Bias:

It’s an age-old shortcoming that has been rooted in the outsourcing model. Over a period of time, effective communication, active listening, and documentation are a few techniques that are helping organizations to cope with it.

Inefficiencies in Processes:

Every organization runs on a routine core process of its own.

When you are bound to a process and hire a team of IT experts from a staff augmentation provider, it’s more than obvious to observe inefficiencies and deviations in the processes that you both follow.

It’s always a great idea to introduce the core practices during the initial meetings when you finalize the staff augmentation vendor. This can surely help in mitigating the forthcoming inefficiencies in the processes to be followed.

Managerial Hicupps:

When you work with augmented teams, you now have a team away from your locale.

And, it surely takes a little effort to indulge in the management practices for the remote teams, unless you have worked in such setup prior.

Beginning hiccups are mandatory to understand the function and to digest what works the best with the remote teams.

4. How to choose the right Staff Augmentation Provider?

Now, what do we mean by a right Staff Augmentation Provider?

How to decide whether the providers you are communicating with are right for your project or not?

We know there are 10 different questions buzzing your mind, right now!

Let’s not complicate it any further.

A right Staff Augmentation Provider – The one who understands your staffing needs completely, understands your project requirements and suggests you the right set of hires without any hidden agendas, and offers you top-notch technical expertise at optimum costs.

Now, let’s understand how you can choose the right staffing vendor.

Identify your staffing needs

The first and foremost thing that you should do is identify your staffing needs.

Here’s a set of questions that can help you conclude, sooner.

  • What is the technology stack that you are going to use for your project?
  • Do you need IT experts specialized in a specific technology?
  • Do you need domain-specific experts to work on your project?
  • How many IT experts are required on the augmented team?
  • How long is this project going to take?
  • Do you need a full team of experts or a few with specialized skill sets that can serve the purpose?

With those questions, you will have figured out the staffing requirements, precisely.

Background Check for the Staff Augmentation Provider

This is crucial and essential to make your IT staff augmentation initiative a success.

With the list of prospected staff augmentation providers by your side, perform a background check for the following set of parameters.

  • Number of years in Staff Augmentation Services
  • Successful project completions
  • What do their customers say about the service – Customer Testimonials
  • Reviews on different business review sites can be of a great help
  • Check if you can connect with one of the old customers of the ‘X’ staff augmentation vendor before you say ‘YES’

Assess Staff Augmentation Service Model

These are the finest details that you should roll in, to make your IT staff augmentation a great success.

There are multiple facets to staff augmentation and it’s essential to pay heed to them to avoid deadlocks during the actual execution.

It’s important to set clear priorities on the following pointers

  • Communication disputes may lead to vulnerabilities. You should set clear communication standards and time zones to avoid communication barriers.
  • Data Security is a major concern when you work with staff augmentation service providers. Have a clear and transparent clause to maintain the integrity of your organizational data.
  • How a staff augmentation service provider hires its technical talent has a great impact on the services. Be sure that you make a point during the initial discussions and understand the hiring techniques the vendor uses. This shall help you gauge the capabilities of the team.

Ultimately, when you find the right staff augmentation vendor who has a transparent process and is willing to help you out and not just make money off your project, is the one you should choose to work with.

5. What is the right time to rope in Staff Augmentation Services?

Now, as we have been through the perks that IT staff augmentation brings to your business, it’s essential to understand the right time and circumstances when introducing IT staff augmentation services is a great deal to have.

Let’s dive in!

When working on a relatively smaller project

In one line – When you know that your project doesn’t require the IT development effort for more than three months or a year, without a second thought you should go for IT staff augmentation.

It’s just the best fit in this case as the augmented team does the job perfectly fine while you are focused on the core business function and operations. It’s that simple to decide!

When you are in search of Specific Expertise

It’s no big deal when you know what you are looking for. There is a huge rush in the market with people specializing in standard sets of technologies. You have to engage with one of them and you are done!

Wait, if you are thinking that way, please refrain from doing something like that.

You can’t even imagine what you are landing in and what it may cost you. Trust us when we say that!

IT staff augmentation services are meant to solve the purpose in such scenarios.

The time you realize that you are going to need some specialized expertise in a certain area of your IT development, it’s a win-win deal to hire skilled experts as an extension to your in-house team, from a reliable staff augmentation provider.

Here are 4 good reasons to do so:

  • You get to leverage the expertise at optimum costs
  • You are assured as you know your project is in safe and proficient hands
  • You get to choose the right fit with the apt domain expertise
  • Your chosen IT resources can be scaled up and down according to your project needs

When project development costs < costs to build an in-house team

Recruitment is not a small game. Building an in-house IT development team has a set of challenges to resolve.

  • High costs involved in onboarding the top IT talent
  • Costs involved in training the workforce for the project
  • Infrastructural costs to provide appropriate setup to the workforce
  • Compensatory costs if you land the wrong hire

The list can grow long, but we believe we have made our point here and it’s clear that incurring costs is a driving factor for recruitment.

About 70% of employers have a hard time employing skilled professionals – ManpowerGroup Research

IT staff augmentation enables considerable cost savings with a lot less hassle for recruiting the able IT talent for your project. With just one  decision, you not only save costs but also get to leverage the top-notch technical expertise.

6. Steps to Follow for a Successful IT Staff Augmentation

We will be very honest and upfront and want you to believe us when we say this.

Be thoughtful before you go for IT staff augmentation!

It’s not meant for everyone.

We have talked enough about the advantage that it brings to your business. And, have precisely listed the pros and cons that may cross your path.

Face the fact, that there are several outsourcing models, and staff augmentation is one of them that we discussed today.

We are consolidating a clear process for a successful IT staff augmentation. We believe this shall help you curate a clear staff augmentation roadmap. You can compare it with other outsourcing models to know which suits your needs better.

Let’s dive in!

IT Staff Augmentation – The Definitive Guide

Locate the Loopholes

Behind every business operating smoothly is a leader and a concrete process, a system in place that reduces the friction and drives the function.

And, to be apt, no process or system is perfect. Some loopholes and shortcomings can be identified and altered to optimize, ahead.

You should focus primarily on locating those loopholes in your business process, system, and business function.

Here’s a set of questions to make it easy

  • What is the business goal that we are trying to achieve?
  • Is there anything that is not letting us move towards our goal?
  • Is there anything we can do about it?
  • Is there a specific function that we need to focus more on?
  • Do we have clear IT goals?
  • Do we have a potential team to attain the set IT goals?
  • Should we hire in-house to form a concrete IT team?
  • Is there any other way around to achieve our IT goals with optimum costs?
  • Will IT Staff Augmentation really be of any help to us?

Be as much inclusive as you can, fetch feedback from your board members, IT team, other teams responsible for operations, and everyone who contributes to the growth.

Feedback is important. Because what appears 6 to you might be a 9 and you never realize it that way.

Be specific about your IT Staff Augmentation Needs

Now, when you know that IT staff augmentation can resolve your problem to the desired extent and can help you achieve your IT goals, it’s time to be more specific.

Understand ‘WHY’ you want to rope in staff augmentation services and how long are you going to need them.

Quick Questions

  • What is the size of the IT project?
  • What team size is required to fulfill the project requirement?
  • Is this a short-term project? If yes, what is the possible duration?
  • Are we approaching staff augmentation for specific expertise that our in-house team is unable to deliver?
  • How many IT experts do we need to augment for this project?

This exercise shall give you a clearer perspective on your IT staff augmentation needs. And, now you are in the right position to decide on which route to take.

Choose the right Staff Augmentation Provider

Now, with a much clear understanding of your project and IT staff augmentation needs, you are all set to screen the augmentation agencies for the good.

Let’s not indulge in the number of staff augmentation providers that exist and have a reputation to make it on your list of options. It’s non-ending.

Make your choices clear and specific – this shall help you reduce the stress and to an extent the number of options on your list.

You can use parameters based on domain-specific expertise, technology-specific expertise, experience in the industry, projects delivered on the time, credible customer testimonials, their certifications, awards etc.

With those smart filters, now you have a focused list of staff augmentation providers right next to you. It’s time to indulge in a conversation and listen to the perks and benefits they bring to the table.

One Important point here..

 Never be easy bait for the augmentation agencies and don’t let them fool you with the age-old tactic – ‘We are offering the most competitive rates than others in the market.’

Who knows, tomorrow their services might turn out to be cheaper than the sums they charged you! Be aware.

Know that you are bidding for quality first and costs second and the one who offers the blend, is on your side.

Get a Contract – It’s Essential

And, the final step, sign a contract.

Get on a call along with the stakeholders on both the sides, and have the terms of service and tenure discussed.

This shall bring more gravity to the deal you make.

And, you now have a reliable IT staff augmentation service provider for your project.

7. Why choose Integrative Systems as your IT Staff Augmentation Service Provider?

Since its inception, Integrative Systems’ prime focus has been on prioritizing its customers’ success. To achieve this feat, Integrative offers flexible IT staff augmentation services to suit the needs of businesses of different sizes.

Integrative is a preferred choice for a clientele spread across the globe.

With two decades of development experience under its hood, and a 500+ team of certified IT experts working on a variety of projects globally, Integrative is always ready to take up new challenges and build real-time solutions.

If you are looking for a reliable IT staff augmentation partner for your next IT project, consider dropping us a line at contact@integrativesystems.com and our team of experts will contact you back within two business days.

Whether you may choose to work with us or not, our team of experts would arrange a Free Consultation session where we aim to help you craft a roadmap for your staff augmentation journey.

See you on the other side!

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