Before we dig deeper into the question of whether or not you should outsource app development, let’s have a few words about the mobile app industry. The two digital distribution giants, App Store and Play Store, count 2.2 million and 2.8 million apps available for download, respectively. In the world, there are over 5 billion unique mobile phone users, which means that each of them uses various mobile applications daily. Small startups, medium-sized companies, and huge enterprises - all of them are required to keep pace with the times and provide cutting-edge technology solutions. A quality mobile app is a way to attract a bigger number of customers and, in turn, increase a business’s revenue.
Now that we have dealt with the importance of creating a custom mobile application for a business, it is time to talk about how you can develop one. There are two most sought-after ways of having an app developed: you either hire an in-house team of software developers or outsource app development to a reliable mobile app development agency.
Outsourcing vs. In-house development
As we were saying, a large number of people use mobile applications for different purposes: from finding entertainment and socializing to doing business and earning money. The demand for high-quality mobile apps is continuously growing. Suppose you want to make the most of what the mobile app industry has to offer for your business. In that case, you need to create a unique, efficient, and relevant mobile application that perfectly suits the needs of your target audience and your company. So, the question is, “Hiring an in-house team or outsourcing app development to a third party?”
When you choose to hire an in-house app development team, you get several apparent advantages. To start with, you’ll gather a team that knows your company in and out, with all its strengths, weaknesses, and peculiarities. On top of that, you will be provided with complete control over the process of app development since the whole team will be working under your caring wing and in your office. It seems as if an in-house development team is a perfect solution. Well, not exactly. There are certain disadvantages, and you should be aware of them.
The first and foremost drawback is that developing an app in-house is costly. Not only will you need to find and hire experienced specialists, but also provide them with the required equipment, space, etc. On top of that, you will need to take care of all the salary and traveling expenses of your in-house employees.
Let’s not forget that a team of in-house developers is often limited in terms of technical expertise. At the same time, an outsourced software development agency can offer a wide array of skills and resources.
So, when is it better to go with an in-house app development team? Well, when you have a massive project that can take years to implement. Figuratively speaking, if you want to create the second Facebook or Instagram, start posting job offers. However, if you are short on money or time and your project isn’t so big, consider outsourcing app development to a third-party.
Outsourcing app development options
Let's say that you have preferred outsourcing over hiring an in-house team, what options have you got? The most obvious variants would be:
- An onshore, nearshore or offshore development agency;
- Individual freelance app developers
- An off-the-shelf application
App development agency is pretty much the best possible option if you want to outsource. First, you have an already built team of experts at hand. A contract secures you since everything is recorded from the scope of work that has to be done to the cost of the project. However, you should keep in mind that development agencies are less flexible when it comes to their mode of work. Plus, this is the most expensive option of three.
The services of individual freelancers might be less costly compared to development agencies but, as a client, you have few to no protection measures. On top of that, the quality of their services might be quite poor.
Off-the-shelf- applications are much cheaper than tailor-made apps, but they don’t always meet all your business needs and have unnecessary features. One thing is sure - this option takes the least time to launch.
What benefits you get when you outsource the development of your mobile app
Instead of spending money on recruitment and training of your in-house resources, you can cut costs on the development of your app as outsourcing is a lot cheaper solution.
Focus on core business activities
Unless you are a full-cycle software development company, it is always better to leave the technical side of work to an outsourced service vendor. This approach will allow you to concentrate on your core business competencies.
Access to a vast pool of skilled experts and resources
By opting for application development outsourcing, there are no limits to the skills and resources that you can get. Besides, mobile app development agencies always offer the latest tools and technologies, from which you can benefit a lot.
Trying to survive in a highly competitive sphere, IT outsourcing agencies do their best to provide their clients with the most efficient and robust products. Therefore, by choosing a reliable vendor, you can be sure of the high quality of the services offered.
Outsource app development costs
When we were talking about the advantages of outsourcing app development to an external agency, we mentioned cost-efficiency. The question is, how much does it cost to outsource app development? Budget is the first thing business owners pay attention to and for a reason. Without thorough planning, there’s a decent chance of overspending or, even worse, being left with nothing at all.
Unfortunately, we cannot provide a table with accurate prices for outsourced mobile app development services, as there are quite a few factors that influence pricing. However, we suggest that you compare the hourly rates of software developers in different countries, look at the quality of their work, and make an informed decision. For instance, if you look up for developers in India, you will see that the rates range from $15 to $25 per hour, but more often than not, the quality of a finished product can be quite poor. European countries, like Ukraine, offer a vast pool of skilled resources that can be hired for $20 to $170 per hour, depending on their experience level. Just to compare, in America, the hourly rates range from $60 to $200 per hour. Whether you want to create a small app or build a massive project, you have to be careful with your investments. Even a slight difference in prices can save you a lot of money.
How to outsource mobile app development?
Know your app and its requirements
Before you even start searching for an outsourced development service provider, you need to understand what your end product should be like, what your expectations are, and what resources, tools, and skills you need to make that happen. At this stage, it is recommended to ask yourself a few crucial questions:
- What audience does my app target?
- What is the primary purpose of my application?
- What features does my app have that single it out?
- What other features does an app need?
- Will an app be running on iOS or Android (or both)?
- Is it paid or free?
- And many more.
Choose the most suitable option for mobile application outsourcing
This step is highly responsible as there are lots of fish in the sea, and there’s always a chance that you can come across shady agencies. So, take your time and do thorough research before you actually hire someone. There are tons of things that have to be taken into consideration when looking for an outsourced development company. Does it offer all the required skills, resources, and tools to build my app? Does a company provide a project manager? What is the company’s pricing? These are just a few questions that have to be answered: there are more of them. It is always a good idea to conduct a real-time interview with a team you want to hire.
Estimate your budget and pick the most suitable pricing model
The amount of money you can put into the development of your future app may affect the choice of companies. Even the slightest difference in prices can be a defining moment. So to speak, at this point, you need to decide on the cooperation model you will be working with a hired development team. Will it be a dedicated development team model, fixed price or time-and-material, etc.?
You know that communication is the key; it is no different when it comes to application development outsourcing. If you are ready to ask questions, if you are curious about the process, if you are willing to clear up misunderstandings, a smooth development process will be easily maintained. It is crucial to set up convenient communication channels with your app development team. And don’t forget that communication is a two-way street, so be interactive, listen, and respond.
So, should you outsource your mobile app development?
As it was mentioned above, if you are in search of an app development team to hire for a short period of time, outsourcing is the way to go because it will help you cut the total costs of the project significantly. Of course, the process of choosing experienced specialists that would meet your project requirements can and will be challenging, but it is worth it.
When you choose to outsource to Eastern European countries like Ukraine, you get a plethora of benefits such as top-notch quality of the product for a lower cost of mobile app development.If you are interested in outsourcing your app development to a reliable vendor, contact us for a free consultation.