Finding and employing the best IT specialists is a problem that not only startups but also powerful corporations with an established market positions are currently facing. The latter more and more often find out that even a huge budget allocated to HR activities does not guarantee success. It turns out that hiring new full-time employees for a specific project is a moderately profitable arrangement. Creating a new job is a whole chain made up of elements that generate considerable costs – from interviewing, through equipping, to salaries. This does not make any sense when working on one product. It is much better to hire professionals. The most popular ways of such collaboration are outsourcing and body leasing. At first glance, they do not differ from each other especially – after all, everyone relies on using the services of an external company, which makes its specialists available to us for a fixed period. So where is the difference between them?
Body Leasing, or a man for a specific task
To put it simply, body leasing is a form of outsourcing consisting in cyclical hiring of a specialist or a small group of specialists with knowledge and skills necessary at different stages of software development. Usually this form of cooperation is used to speed up work on a project, meet deadlines, fill gaps in the competence of the current team and even, in some cases, reduce the cost of its implementation.
Companies offering body leasing services make their specialists available to work for another company for the period agreed in the contract. The competence of these specialists should correspond to the requirements related to a specific project. During the cooperation it is possible to exchange hired specialists in order to provide the client with continuous access to people with competences necessary for project development. The key to success is that the leasing company should be able to manage its specialist so that the cooperation is effective.
You can read more about body leasing here.
Outsourcing, that is, a team that will embrace the whole
Outsourcing, about which we have already written many times in this blog here, allows us to collaborate with a team of specialists without the need to over-engage the human resources of the ordering company (however, let us remember that we will always need someone to conduct workshops, answer our questions, accept demos, etc.). The difference is that in the case of outsourcing, we do not use the skills of one person who helps in a specific task, but a team of specialists working complementaryly on a specific problem. It is a kind of cooperation that takes away from the client the need to have knowledge about particular stages of software development. What is more, the specialists can work from any place on Earth. The client’s role is solely to accept or make any comments on the product.
Does it pay off?
The basic advantage of both solutions is primarily savings – both in terms of financial outlays and time usually spent on recruitment of specialists. The use of outsourcing or body leasing allows for a beneficial reduction. The company does not have to create a special position in order to complete one project. Both solutions guarantee savings in many fields, from the team, through equipment, training, necessary licenses, to office space. However, the most important advantage of outsourcing, which we will probably not mention again in this blog, is the possibility to acquire the best IT professionals for a short period of time. A powerful blessing for the company here is the lack of rigid costs usually associated with classic forms of employment, such as job retention, monthly salaries (despite completion of the project), etc.
Outsourcing and body leasing – what to pay attention to
The factors that most influence the whole collaboration between the customer and the software house is the right choice of supplier and the early stage of negotiations. A thorough review of the references and a thorough study of the contract is an absolute basis. One of the cardinal mistakes made by many companies entering into body leasing cooperation is usually poor identification of the candidate profile. In order to get the best professional in the area, the clients used to look for a specialist with competences too extensive in relation to the actual requirements of the project. The consequence is that the cost of the service is far too high and the time of its implementation is too long. In order to avoid such situations, it is necessary to appoint a Product Owner [PO] who will actively participate in team meetings and take full responsibility for the progress of work.
How to settle accounts?
Both in the case of outsourcing and body leasing, contracts based on task completion time or fixed prices can be used. The first of the above mentioned forms is based on the so-called timesheet with hours that a specialist has devoted to work on the project. In the second case, an assessment of the entire task is made, taking into account such factors as project assumptions, final effect and even the efficiency of the whole team. The choice of a particular model depends on the client’s preferences as well as the model in which the software house works. Experienced clients often recommend the Time & Material method, about which we wrote in one of our earlier articles.
What to choose?
Classic outsourcing or body leasing? As in the case of other dealers, the choice of the right model depends primarily on individual preferences and needs. It cannot be done without a solid analysis, on the basis of which the client will decide on the most beneficial form (the choice may be determined by the specifics of the project itself). Body leasing is usually recommended to companies for which software development is not the first choice. A client of this type needs first of all support from one specialist who will watch over the success of the project. Similarly, outsourcing should be the first choice in the case of companies not closely related to the IT industry, which need comprehensive support for the task.