Staff Augmentation vs. Other Outsourcing Models

Zoltan Fehervari

September 4, 2022

There are many ways you can accomplish software development. Staff Augmentation is popular but what other outsourcing models are there? Read our breakdown!


The cold reality of finishing a software is that success requires experienced developers - the more competent, the better.

How can you have the correct structure for a development team to solve software development difficulties? Because employing new individuals is an expensive, time-consuming, and inconvenient process, indeed.

It is the question of the ages. Let’s cut to the chase and let us just say it out-loud: IT Staff Augmentation services. This service was born to help the future of flexible, cost-efficient staff recruitment. We can confirm it is one of the best options for outsourcing. But are there other ways to accelerate your project completion?

Stay with us as we break down Staff Augmentation and look at some other popular project outsourcing models.

staff augmentation services

Staff Augmentation

It is an approach to outsourcing in the most beneficial way. We can call it a relationship-based IT outsourcing model where a company expands the in-house staff by hiring IT specialists through companies like Bluebird.

Why would someone hire this way and why is it popular?

Imagine you have a successful ATS (application tracking system) tool and now you want to release it to the public. But your in-house team lacks expertise, someone from the server side. The most obvious solution would be recruiting a qualified Python developer for example. This takes time, especially if you need specialists for a few months. Instead of wasting time with the usual employment procedure (searching, interviewing, and onboarding), you may call an outsourcing provider. They will give competent specialists for as long as you need.

This is how the staff augmentation service model works.

Outsourced experts work alongside your staff as part of your in-house team. While you continue to control the development process and workflow. You have complete control and accountability for the project.

Let us summarize the PROs for Staff Augmentation:

Online Job Interview - Bluebird

Easy Access to Developers: You may extend your development staff anytime and for as long as you need it. There is no need for recruitment or HR support.

Online Job Interview - Bluebird

Lower expenses and less effort: Although vendors charge a fee for their services, the cost is often cheaper than in-house employment: You are not paying for the employee's office space, hardware, software, taxes, training, or burger delivery. These are issues with your vendor. You are not paying for recruitment or human resource services either. Recruitment, onboarding, and turnover expenses are also the responsibility of your vendor, not yours. You're dealing with slower growth rates. Hiring a mid-level coder from Canada or the United States costs three times as much as hiring one from Poland or Romania.

Online Job Interview - Bluebird

Access to Top talent: You will get access to senior engineers and other IT specialists. Without enticing them with high full-time wages, workplace amenities like coffee and foosball tables.

Online Job Interview - Bluebird

Flexibility: You can have as many IT professionals as you need for the time being with staff augmentation service. For example, you may start with two specialists and subsequently add a back-end developer and a QA engineer to your team. Your outsourcing partner will simply send fresh resumes for you to review.

Online Job Interview - Bluebird

Full control over the project development: You hire a team of professionals while maintaining complete control over the development process. You may perform it yourself or delegate responsibility to a project manager who will report to you.

One alternative at a time, we will present now other options for outsourcing.

Dedicated Teams - Outsourcing

The dedicated team model has several advantages, ranging from scalability and flexibility to cost effectiveness. These advantages ensure its position among the most popular outsourcing models. At first appearance, the dedicated team approach seems to have the upper hand against the staff augmentation model.

What are these claims?

Working with a dedicated team entails employing a team of IT professionals to handle activities that you do not want to allocate to your in-house staff. For example, if the process requires specialized talents that your staff is in lack of and in which the corporation is unwilling to invest. The dedicated team is assigned to your project, in the same way that the staff augmentation service model is.

key takeaway: You receive a team of tech experts that is completely focused on your project. They are not integrated with your internal staff. They operate autonomously. 

The management responsibility falls on the outsourced team’s side (with the vendor’s PM (Project Manager).) The roles are usually cross-functional. You may only need mobile app developers, back-end developers and a QA engineer to look after your development and the quality of the product. In other scenarios, you find yourself in need of a full dedicated team: mobile and web developers, QA engineers, a business analyst and a UI/UX designer.

The number of roles depends on your project. The vendor adjust to your requirements usually. In any case, this is what a full team could look like:

  • one or more Mobile App Developer
  • Back-end developers
  • a Business Analyst
  • a QA Engineer
  • a DevOps Engineer
  • Let us summarize the PROs for Dedicated Teams:

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Greater control over the process: You have more control over the development process as you communicate directly with them and they report to your in exchange.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Improved Communication: The team members know each other. They know the pace, communication styles and have probably worked together in the past.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Lower Risks: The selection of team members is based on their previous experiences. It is a must that they have worked on similar products in the past.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Day-to-day management not needed: The PM is responsible for the process and work hours of the each team member.

    dedicated teams model

    The fact is that there is no one-size-fits-all successful formula; each CEO must understand his company's requirements and act appropriately. As we move forward with the article, the path becomes more clear for you.

    Project Based Model - Outsourcing

    You have a difficult project ahead and you prefer not to be involved in the day-to-day operations?

    Basically, you will have access to skilled individuals and specialists who will infuse quality and prestige into the product you are building. This is why the project-based model is the most conventional and widely used in software development.

    But what is the process exactly?

    The client selects how often they want to hear from the team's Project Manager and agrees on the project needs, which are expressed in the project specification. Full workflow management is in the hands of the PM provided by your IT vendor. They are entirely responsible for delivering the final product in accordance with the specifications and timescale you agreed upon beforehand.

    key takeaway: You have the least control with this outsourcing strategy. The development team is overseen by the vendor's Project Manager. But your team is not isolated; you have a project manager who reports to you on a regular basis, gives demonstrations, and so on.

    It is entirely up to you how often you want to meet with the Project Manager and the team. For instance, you only have free time on Tuesdays. Alternatively, you might meet with the team twice a week. It is entirely dependent on the project's characteristics and needs.

    Not to mention, that the team often requires client approval, particularly for documentation and design. For example, if UI/UX design is completed by the vendor already, wireframes are always approved with the customer first, only then followed by additional ideas and processes.

    Let us summarize the PROs for Project Based Model:

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Timelines and outcomes that are crystal clear: Before the job starts, you and your project outsourcing partner agree on schedules and deliverables. That offers you a clear picture of what you'll get at the conclusion of the scope: screen-by-screen app design, implemented features, and so on.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Time involvement is minimal: Some approvals are required, but mostly it’s the Project Manager who makes sure the work is done on time and with decent quality. You can focus on your high-priority tasks.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Responsibility lies on your vendor: You are in charge of documenting project requirements and specifications. However, execution and delivery are the responsibility of your provider.

    software development services



    Bonus feature: that comes with the Project Based model

    Managed Services.

    The vendor could provide a specific extra service once the project is finished. Which is to continue working on updates. The client should always think about improvements and excellence which can be achieved by MSP.

    How does it work?

    A managed service provider (MSP) provides network, application, infrastructure, and security services to clients via continuous and frequent support and active management on their premises, in their MSP's data center (hosting), or in a third-party data center. MSPs may provide their own native services in addition to those of other suppliers (for example, a security MSP providing sys admin on top of a third-party cloud IaaS). Pure-play MSPs concentrate on a single vendor or technology, often their own core products. Many MSPs incorporate services from non-traditional vendors. MSP was originally applied to infrastructure or device-centric services, but it has now grown to cover any ongoing, regular management, maintenance, and support.

    Independent Contractor - Outsourcing

    This option is pretty straight forward and you have probably heard about it countless times.

    Many people refer to an IC (Independent Contractor) as a freelancer - an independent individual who offers their skills on a part-time basis. They often offer their skills on platforms like Toptal and wait for organizations to give them a project, or they approach companies searching for talent on these sites proactively. Contractors often work on many projects at the same time.

    If you engage a freelancer, you will be responsible for all of the aforementioned elements - salary, administration, communication, and so on - that are handled by the vendor in the case of staff augmentation. Hiring an independent contractor, on the other hand, implies that you do not pay a commission to the vendor and directly engage the contractor. As a result, the amount you pay the seller relieves you of additional effort.

    Also, bear in mind that the position that an independent contractor may have in a corporation is subject to specific restrictions.

    Let us summarize the PROs for Independent Contractor:

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Hiring is usually extremely rapid

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Rates that are stable

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Easy to find the most skilled specialists

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Relatively flexible conditions

    it freelancer

    Offshore Development Center (ODC) - Outsourcing

    The offshore software development center is a physical location or office devoted to providing the organization with software development services. Companies may establish a specialized offshore development center anywhere in the world. Businesses, on the other hand, prefer to seek a place with lower living expenses than their home country.

    How does it work?

    The vendor finds an office, and other service providers (internet connection, furnishings, assistance, and so on) - all of these services are included in the charge. When everything is in place, you will be in charge of your team and office as it becomes a full-fledged component of your business. So, although the vendor prepares you for the opening, the rest is up to you.


    Forward-thinking firms are aiming to establish ODCs or offshore development centers to balance the expense of increasing their software company. Lowering expenses, simplifying taxes, and having access to a worldwide talent pool are all compelling reasons to do so.

    key takeaway: An offshore software development center provides services from another part of the globe, while outsourcing provides the same service but without regard to physical location.

    Let us summarize the PROs for Offshore Development Center:

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Access to expertise: Naturally, you don’t want your in-house IT staff to be extremely overwhelmed. A managed service provider will assist you in augmenting your team with IT employees who are experts in a certain industry.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Scaling automatically: It’s entirely possible that your organization runs under changing resource requirements. There may be times when your projects need more maturity. Ergo, it's more time-efficient to delegate it to your offshore development center and scale up your development staff as required.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Cost savings on hiring: Recruiting an on-site specialist may be a costly endeavor, particularly if your organization is headquartered in a high-paying locale. Since this expense item relies on a service provider, an offshore development center enables you to remove such expenditures.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Infrastructure expenses are reduced: Investing in infrastructure and extra amenities such as office rent, power, and an Internet connection may consume a large portion of the company's budget. Offshore development centers convert fixed expenses into variables, enabling you to save money on infrastructure.

    Online Job Interview - Bluebird

    Enhanced security: In addition to being secluded from the outside world in a separate office, your software and security will be maintained up to date for your safety.

    offshore development center

    Bluebird has years of expertise in the IT staffing and outsourcing arena, therefore our recruiters are ready to give professional advice and competent support in filling your company's personnel shortages and ensuring seamless and effective staff augmentation process flows.

    Contact our managers immediately to understand how we can assist you, obtain a sample staff augmentation contract to see how we operate, and go one step closer to your ideal development team.

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