Dedicated software teams are getting popular these days. Indeed, by working with such a team, you focus only on product development, remain fully aware of all its processes, and do not engage in employee hiring and motivation. Before we dive deep into the details, let’s define what dedicated team meaning is and what the distinctive features of this type of partnership are.
Dedicated team definition
A dedicated team definition is an outsourcing business model that allows clients to hire a remote software development team under their management. It works best when the company needs to obtain professional developers for a long-term project.
The dedicated project team is on the rise thanks to its high effectiveness and transparent way of a partnership between clients and software development companies. In this article, I will explain how this model works, what businesses can benefit from it and I’ll also define the pros and cons. After reading this comprehensive guide, you will be able to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of this partnership and decide if it works for you.
How does a dedicated project team work?
A dedicated team model is chosen when there is no clear general concept about the project realization, but there are a lot of tasks within long-term collaboration. However, the company or the startup can change the requirements, duration, or management solution through total control of the project realization.
The dedicated remote team stays focused and works together until it fully meets the project obligations. When it comes to management, you can choose both options of managing the team — to manage a dedicated software team on your own, or delegate it to the responsible project manager. With either choice, the client treats dedicated employees as a remote team and pays team members salaries.
To better understand the model, it’s important to define steps of collaboration. Below, I cover all necessary steps of how to get started with a new team:
Step 1. Gathering requirements
You should clearly outline what you want to get in the future. It means that at this stage we gather requirements. You define how many employees you need and what tech skills are necessary. If you don’t have technical expertise, this process is done by a Business Analyst or Project Manager. Our Analyst gathers all project requirements and your expectations, and after that makes an approximate estimation of technical skills, number of hours, and feature list.
Step 2. Project definition
After approximate development requirements are defined, it's time to determine team members, prices, and the duration of cooperation. The number of employees depends on the project, but usually, it includes frontend and backend engineers, quality assurance engineers, designers, and project managers. The selected developers are fully focused on your project. You can operate your team directly or delegate this authority to your vendor. Team management is an important point and we’ll focus on it later.
Step 3. Onboarding and introduction
After selecting a team, it is important to acquaint new employees with the corporate culture and policies, with in-house employees, discuss the internal workflow, and introduce the tools that you use within the company.
Step 4. Start of work
The team is ready to start working. You can either completely manage the team yourself or communicate only with the PM.
Advantages of dedicated teams
A dedicated development team contract can be a good model for delivering the product if all the advantages and disadvantages are analyzed. Find out the main benefits of a dedicated development process.
The dedicated team model provides efficient budget spending. You can change the funding envelope if you change the focus of the project or a part of it. You save money on such important processes as technology research and business analysis, which require a considerable number of working hours.
Aside from flexible budgeting, you will have fewer expenses compared to taking people in-house. Recruiting, training, monthly salary, taxes, or staff replacement are all managed by the vendor’s resources. To these, you can also add expenses on software, hardware, and other social costs. A dedicated team contract is based on a fixed hourly rate. Additional costs may arise in case of traveling or managing the team by your own project manager. The following table presents a comparative analysis of the in-house staff recruiting and outsourcing expenses.
The costs of outsourcing staff differ in many countries. The average software hourly rate fluctuates in the range of $46 in Canada to $90 in Israel.
Eastern Europe provides new destinations for outsourcing skilled labor, which allows companies to reduce costs and get new growth opportunities.
Ukraine is one of the directions that can help you to optimize your expenses without losing in quality. Rates for a Middle Software Engineer vary from $26–$38, while a Senior Software Engineer’s Hourly Rate is $39–$60. Ukraine occupies a leading position in the fastest-growing destinations for global software development services. According to the 2019 CEE report, the country’s software development sector increased by 19% in 2018 and is expanding steadily year by year. The country offers ample opportunities – from its vast IT talent pool and wide experience to cost efficiency and strong technical skills.
Over 1,600 companies in Ukraine provide a wide range of IT-related services (more than 900 listed on Clutch). More than 192,100 IT professionals with strong technical education and different specializations are available for your choice, which helps the country to occupy a competitive position in the global IT market. More than 56% of all tech experts are involved in IT outsourcing and IT outstaffing activities. As you can see in the table below, Ukraine is ranked first among Eastern European countries by the number of IT companies.
A software outsourcing company can save your time on hiring the right qualified specialists. Once you have determined that a distributed team is what you need, we are willing to provide this model for you. We can easily pick the right tech team — engineers, quality assurance engineers (QA), designers, business analysts (BA), and project managers. You save your time as you get a highly professional team, with flexible regulation of the team members, and an agile system of people replacement.
There is no need to spend time on the staff adaptation process either. The research about Effective Employee Engagement in the Workplace shows that an in-house employee achieves full productivity within 8 to 26 weeks of employment. In contrast, with a dedicated team, your employees are ready to work immediately as a fully adapted and formed working group that boosts productivity, engagement, and efficiency in the workflow. You benefit from outsourcing the process of managing staff replacement in case of illness or resignation.
Flexible team management
The dedicated team is flexible when it comes to project management. You may have your self-sufficient project manager who will communicate with the outsourced team, manage all stages of the collaboration process and keep you updated. If you don’t have such an employee you can delegate the project management to your outsourcing partner. In this case, control over the organization of the process and responsibility for prioritizing tasks rests with your partner. The project manager from the outsourcing company has fluent written and spoken English and is a part of the dedicated team. Working in the same office with developers results in a more effective collaboration, which significantly speeds up the process.
Cultural fit and time-zones fit
Cultural fit and corporate ethics are important factors when speaking about the dedicated team. Directing your software development to our developers you get professionals with both excellent hard knowledge and soft skills. You can rely on the team's positive attitude and ability to stay productive. The vendor always monitors the level of engagement and the results of work with the help of recruiters and human resources managers. You can focus on the core business functions without worrying about remote employee engagement.
A time-zone difference will not matter in the case of a well-organized communication process. The CEO at DigitalSuits, Artem Semenko, shares his tips: “Well-organized communication saves a ton of time and makes the process smoother. In our work, we have a communication plan as we value quality communication. To provide a high level of transparency, we provide constant meetings with clients, sprint or week reports, time reports, product roadmaps. Our client should always be aware of what is going on in the project. We always stay in touch with the client and set up our own schedule of meetings based on the client’s preferences. In this way, they’re able to manage their expectations.
To organize communication, we use special tools like Slack, proper Task Management Systems for daily and weekly reports, and Confluence to track call summaries, to keep the team posted on the project updates, and to store information in one place. These tips are the minimum that is necessary for good communication.”
Disadvantages of dedicated teams
Attractive and effective in many cases, a dedicated team has its cons and can cause some issues as well. Let's have a closer look at it.
Lack of remote control
Remote control demands a clear understanding of software development workflow, effective planning, and high level of collaboration between a project manager and dedicated team members. Your remote manager can’t be involved in other processes while being fully immersed in the implementation of the project at every stage. This process requires constant meetings and feedback from the dedicated team supervised by a project manager. It’s better not to mix project management responsibilities with others, as it requires a lot of time and knowledge from the manager.
An outsourcing development company can provide its own project manager who will fully manage operation control and communication inside the software development team. The project manager has a high level of understanding and interaction with the team and is aware of all the necessary procedures and tools for the successful implementation of the project.
Low productivity of short-term projects
Within a very tight time frame, it would be a huge waste of time to hire and integrate the whole outsourcing team. It is better to choose another model for your product development. Time and Material or Fixed Price models are more preferable in this case. The project evaluation process will be more flexible, and, in case of amendments, a price change request is possible.
Security and business continuity risks
The dedicated project team structure provides high integration of the outsourcing development company to your business plans and prospects. You need to entrust your product development to outsourced developers. It’s not an easy deal to find a reliable managing team for all the company issues on its way to development without losing control at each stage. It is important to pay great attention to selecting the right partner able to provide high-quality services, ensure continuous effective development, and guarantee the security of information related to the implementation of the project.
When dedicated software team works best and when it does not
A dedicated team model is suitable for software-related issues of many businesses. Here I’ve collected the reasons why your business needs it.
When dedicated team works best
A dedicated team model is more efficient for long-term or large projects. Finding a ready-to-work team of professionals can help you to speed up your project realization. You will fill gaps related to the shortage of talents within tight time frames and get technical and efficient processes with established methodology and required development infrastructure.
Hiring a dedicated team allows you to change the vectors of the development, add new features, and even redesign the project. You gain time efficiency and an optimal route in your product development.
Dedicated project teams are beneficial because an outsourced IT team is far more cost-efficient than in-house employees. Hiring an outsourcing development company with lower prices cuts the budget without losing in the qualification of the staff and numbers of the features provided.
When dedicated team doesn't work
For small projects realizat