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How to Hire Dedicated Offshore Developers in 2022

September 14, 2022

This article will be of interest to CTOs, CEOs, and Chiefs of Innovations of startups, product development companies, or non-tech enterprises that need to delegate their software projects and jobs to save money or due to a shortage of local technical talent. Hiring offshore dedicated teams may provide a perfect solution to your needs.

Outstaffing and outsourcing help more and more startups and even tech giants engage the best talent and create competitive software solutions faster while cutting costs. For those who choose to outsource, dedicated teams worldwide offer help with research, software design, web and mobile development, quality assurance, maintenance, and more.

 

 

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Of the two outsourcing approaches – nearshore software development in a closer time zone and geographical proximity to the client and offshore outsourcing to faraway countries – the latter comes with the most significant savings.

 

This article defines a dedicated software development team, lists its advantages, explains when it works best, and offers some practical tips to help you hire an offshore dedicated team.

 

What Is an Offshore Software Dedicated Team?

An offshore dedicated team is a group of IT specialists based abroad whom a client, i.e. an entity that seeks to outsource its software development needs, typically hires from an outsourced development company, aka agency, contractor, provider, or vendor. ‘Dedicated’ means that the remote software engineering team works full-time only for this client, is exclusively focused on a particular project, and can’t be switched to another.

 

Dedicated offshore teams perform particular tasks, e.g., write the code, ensure quality, maintain and improve the system, etc., on a long-term basis. Unlike freelancers, dedicated software developers usually work as a unit and take full responsibility for the project. 

 

The vendor assembles the team from the ground up, hand-picking candidates with the required skill sets, experience, and salary rates suitable for the client. Once the candidates are approved, the client and vendor agree on a monthly fee for each specialist. 

 

The agreement associated with offshore dedicated software engineers is called a Cost+ contract. It records the client’s requirements, project roadmap, deadlines, and budget. 

 

Once contracted, the remote specialists become a part of the client’s workforce, although working out of the vendor's office. They are accountable to the client as if they were full-time employees, can access their databases and administration systems, if needed, and attend relevant online meetings. Their hourly rate is fixed, and the client pays for the recorded hours. The monthly payment comprises these wages plus the provider’s fixed fee.

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The vendor provides the remote dedicated software development team with office space, necessary equipment, software, and administrative support. They also handle the necessary training, payroll, social benefits, taxes, team building, and related issues and expenses.             

 

The collaboration with an outsourcing development team typically lasts over 12 months. Once the project is over, so is the cooperation.

 

The Benefits of Hiring Offshore Dedicated Teams

 

A tailored team of professionals focused exclusively on your product

The client can be sure that they get talent specially selected according to their standards for their unique project. They can personally interview each candidate, and the vendor may offer a trial period for everyone. If a specialist fails to meet the client’s expectations, the vendor will be responsible for finding new eligible candidates.

 

Each offshore dedicated developer will be focused on and working on the client’s project full-time every day. When a client puts forth urgent queries or modifications, a dedicated team will be more likely to act promptly, even at odd hours.

 

Faster kick-off and product delivery

A vendor can recruit a team of dedicated software developers within days or even hours. You can avoid posting multiple job advertisements, screenings, rounds of interviews, the pain of choosing, signing individual contracts, and lengthy onboarding.

 

 

The vendor selects the best fits for all essential roles from their pool of specialists experienced in executing projects in a particular domain. Having the best professionals from the start helps achieve the project goals faster. Moreover, the team members are usually accustomed to working together, which further speeds up the development process. 

 

Saving time and effort

Exempt from any hiring hassle, paperwork, organizing workstations, administrative and other issues, the client company’s management can free up time and energy and focus on the core business processes and growth ideas.

 

High flexibility

The outsourced development team model is flexible. Clients can change the requirements and project scope on the fly, experiment with and balance the workload, and quickly build the team up and down according to the current business goals. Outsourcing agencies have ample human resources that allow finding the best extra hands or substitutes immediately.

 

You are also free to determine the scope of your involvement in project-related processes. For instance, you can share the decision-making or delegate some decisions to a trusted team.

 

Confidence in the high quality of the product

Outsourcing provides access to the best experts worldwide. Clients can expect more effective problem solving and better code after hiring better programmers or experts in cutting-edge technologies they wouldn’t recruit in their area with a limited budget.

 

Clients may be able to fill those roles they might otherwise omit, such as experienced PMs, product owners, or testers. All these experts are key to ensuring the high quality of digital products. Outsourcing also increases a client’s capacity to innovate.

 

 

Predictable budget and cost reduction

By screening outsourcing agencies from all over the world, you can select the most cost-efficient offers. Due to the gaps between IT professionals’ salaries in developed countries and emerging economies, your remote software engineering team can deliver more value for the same money.

 

Clients eliminate the expenses associated with in-house IT departments, such as office rent, electricity bills, equipment, software licenses, administration, training, benefits packages, and more. Additionally, the vendor relieves them from the recruitment and onboarding costs.

 

US-based companies reportedly can save over 50% on IT costs when they hire dedicated offshore software developers in Latin America, Eastern Europe, or South Asia compared to in-house developers, and around 20-40% compared with other outsourced development models.

 

Knowing the hourly rate of each dedicated team member, you can plan the project budget more accurately. It becomes more transparent and easier to adjust in the course of the project.

 

24/7 software development

Running an offshore development team comes with its challenges, but time differences typical for this cooperation model may prove to be beneficial. You can plan the work of two or more teams in such a way that your operations will be going day and night.

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Saving the project knowledge

A dedicated team that works on a project for at least one year acquires a deep understanding of the client’s requirements, the product, and its niche. The team members hone their skills, share and grow the product knowledge every day, and accumulate it throughout the cooperation. If the project team line-up changes, you can be sure of a successful knowledge transfer.

 

When Is It Best to Hire Offshore Dedicated Development Teams?

1. The dedicated software development approach is most suitable for complex long-term projects with fluid requirements or when there is no clear vision of the final goal and the scope, budget, and timeline may change at any time.

 

2. In regions with high software development rates, businesses can save money by recruiting developers elsewhere.

 

3. If you’re an early-stage startup expected to grow, an external dedicated team will help you build your product faster while saving money.

 

4. If you are a small- or mid-sized non-digital business, creating a full-fledged IT department to help digitize your processes may be impractical. An external dedicated team can both realize your software development ideas at a lower cost and advise you when needed.

 

5. The dedicated software development model is great for product ideas that need a discovery stage and validation. You can go through the crucial phase with minimum investment, while an outsourced development agency’s expertise will increase your odds of success.

 

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6. A remote dedicated software development team can help when you already have an in-house or remote unit building a product but need a workforce boost.

 

7. Companies also tend to hire dedicated offshore developers or other specialists when their in-house team lacks the required skills or expertise for short-term projects, or they have difficulty finding local talent for new projects or tasks: it’s hard to find a valuable worker quickly, especially if one offers only short-time employment.

 

8. This approach is also suitable for a side IT project when you don’t want to distract the internal team from their core tasks.

 

9. There are seasonal jobs in the digital area too, and sometimes, one needs to hire workers only to dismiss them shortly. The outsourced dedicated development model allows ramping resources up and down painlessly.

 

10. When a business grows, scaling its systems up and down and adding features while ensuring smooth operation becomes increasingly demanding for its in-house team. An entity can hire an offshore IT team to take over the heavy lifting and help maintain stable performance.

 

11. A specialized dedicated team can help with all aspects of redesigning a web or mobile app, from ascertaining the project’s goals to updating the existing features.

 

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More often than not, clients engage cross-functional teams to complete a project. Let’s see for which specialists to look when you hire an offshore dedicated development team.

 

Dedicated Team Structure

A dedicated software development team may include, but not be limited to, the following roles:

 

  • Project manager (PM). The PM is in charge of planning and execution, mitigating risks, workflow management, distributing tasks, mediating between the client and the team members, supervising the development, tracking progress, reporting, and communicating with the client. A PM is indispensable if the client has no technical expertise to monitor the development themselves.

 

  • Product manager. This person takes the overall responsibility for the development of a digital product. They own the business strategy behind the product, identify the customer needs and business objectives of product features, specify its functional requirements, define the success criteria, coordinate the efforts of software engineers and other participants, and generally manage the launch of features.

 

  • Business analyst (BA). A BA bridges the divide between business and digital professionals. BAs study the client’s business to identify problems and facilitate the creation of solutions, improve internal processes, and optimize the development. They monitor core processes, outline and assess project requirements, use analytics to suggest solutions, and otherwise facilitate the achievement of business objectives.

 

  • Solutions architect. Solution architects evaluate a business’ existing technical solutions, design and develop new technological solutions, help integrate them into workflows, and oversee the programmers implementing them.

 

  • UX/UI designer. This expert in user experiences (UX) and user interfaces (UI) is responsible for the digital product’s appealing look-and-feel and comfortable interaction with it. UI/UX designers use the client’s sketches and specifications to create mockups, prototypes, and then the final interface designs they hand over to the programmers. Upon release, they can measure the design efficiency for continuous product improvement.

 

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  • Software developers/programmers. These specialists write the code to build apps according to the specifications and changing requirements throughout the development cycle. Back-end engineers take care of the business logic, including a server, an application, and a database. Front-end programmers are focused on the users’ interactions with the product. Mobile app developers build interfaces for two primary operating systems — iOS and Android.

 

  • Tech lead. A tech lead is often the most skilled software developer in a team. The role of this technical expert with management capabilities is to drive the development process and propose and make technical decisions.

 

  • Quality assurance (QA) engineers/QA automation engineers. QA services center on maximizing the quality of a digital product from the onset of product development. QA engineers evaluate specifications and technical design documents, create test plans and cases, perform manual and automated tests, evaluate app flow, identify bugs and errors in the software, report them to the developers for fixing, and so forth.

 

  • DevOps engineer. DevOps experts promote and control a constant deployment and continuous integration, which includes compiling documentation for the server work, identifying the right tools, setting up and coordinating the development, operations, and testing processes, automating the code flow from development to production, and monitoring performance. They can also oversee the IT infrastructure, hardware, software, network, data storage, etc.

 

Depending on the digital product specifics, an extended dedicated software team may also include additional experts, such as:

 

  • Data scientists that develop data modeling processes, create algorithms and predictive models, and perform analysis
  • Marketing experts to conduct market research, prepare pre-launch campaign strategies, assist with search engine optimization and social media and content marketing, etc. Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) developers to integrate immersive experiences in the digital product…

 

… and more.

 

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How to Hire an Offshore Development Team in 3 Steps

 

1. Define your goals and requirements.

First, an organization or entrepreneur has to formulate their business goals, timeline, project scope, and budget. These will determine the composition of the future offshore development team and the price range to look for.

 

Some tasks you want to outsource would require that you specify the necessary programming languages, frameworks, technology stacks, and skill levels, as well as knowledge of particular domains (e.g., healthcare, FinTech, or travel).

 

If you do not have any experience, your future outsourcing partner will help you figure out the team’s structure, the number of persons for each position, the skills they should possess, and the required level (junior, middle, or senior developer). However, to do so, the vendor will need at least a list of your product’s features and your goals. The more information, the faster they will be able to assemble a suitable team.

 

Also, consider what soft skills and cultural know-how you would like the remote team members to have. Prioritize your requirements and formulate some possible tradeoffs. For example, would you mind working with specialists whose imperfect English may cause miscommunications if they charge lower fees? Would your colleagues mind staying at the office an extra hour or scheduling video or phone calls with a remote team outside of business hours?

 

Once you have documented your requirements and expectations, it’s time to look for outsourced software development providers.

 

2. Choose the price range, time zone, country, and agency.

The price of software development services primarily depends on the region where the provider is located. For companies operating in North America, Western Europe, Western or East Asia, or Australia, the most popular IT outsourcing destinations remain pretty the same.

 

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Eastern Europe is an alluring outsourcing destination due to the optimal price-quality ratios and vast pools of world-class tech talent. For example, the average software developer’s salary in Ukraine or Romania is 2-3 times lower than the salaries of their counterparts in the US or Western Europe.

 

Once you have decided on your preferences regarding developers’ hourly rates and time zone, narrow down your search to one country. The selection criteria may include the prices, whether you know the country’s language, the level of the workers’ proficiency in English, cultural compatibility, local business climate (regulations, taxes, and any introduced sanctions), and other aspects.

 

Once a suitable location has been identified, you can Google outsourced development providers in the country. The easiest way is to search on popular aggregators, such as Clutch, GoodFirms, ITFirms.co, TopDevelopers, etc.

 

When looking through potential outsourcing partners, pay attention to

 

  • their services
  • whether they offer dedicated software engineering teams 
  • number of employees (large vendors are more likely to have the necessary resources readily available)
  • whether they have relevant domain expertise
  • the developers’ technology stacks and skill levels
  • the language(s) of communication
  • clients’ reviews and feedback
  • pricing policy

 

 

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Shortlist 4-5 most suitable options and examine them closely. The following tips can help you make the next choice:

 

  • Examine each vendor’s website, LinkedIn page, and other social media accounts.
  • Look through their portfolio and ask to see examples of previous work in your industry.
  • Check what is said about the agency on reviews aggregators, forums, by people in your industry, etc.
  • Look for the vendor’s clients known for their high-quality products or services.
  • Ask for references from existing clients and their opinion on cooperation with the vendor
  • Learn about the vendor’s security standards, privacy policy, etc.
  • Learn whether it has multiple branches and where its offices are located (multiple foreign offices are a favorable factor).
  • Choose the provider that prioritizes your business needs and interests, arranges extra calls if needed, follows up on you, etc.

 

3. Negotiate and prepare for a successful collaboration.

Start the negotiation by asking the service provider to show you their typical contract. Learn under what conditions the company usually works, and if needed, ask a lawyer to take a look.

 

From your first interaction with the vendor’s representatives, take notice of the company culture, communication style, and ability to meet your requirements. In your turn, try to be open too.

 

Before discussing your project, goals, and needs, have the vendor sign a non-disclosure agreement. It will oblige your potential outsourcing partner to keep secret not only technical developments but also your ideas and any sensitive business information. It should cover your intellectual property, data collection, transfer, access, etc. There should also be an option to sign an NDA with each remote team member.

 

Ask about the agency’s information security policy and how it complies with the GDPR, ISO, PCI, HIPAA, or other applicable standards when building certain products. Discuss the use of best practices and measures to prevent any security vulnerabilities from the onset.

 

 

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If the vendor has met your requirements so far, you can share and discuss your ideas and documents disclosing the scope of the project, its goals, roadmap, working principles, tech stack, etc. Once the vendor has understood their task, they can proceed to setting up a team for you.

 

Typically, they would offer one or more vetted specialists per position. You can review their CVs, send some practical tasks, and interview shortlisted candidates during a video call.

 

After selecting the specialists for all roles, the vendor and the client approve their salaries and the vendor’s fee for the entire collaboration period. The contract you sign should clearly describe:

 

  • the development rates with breakdowns depending on expertise
  • possible discounts
  • payment and invoicing protocols
  • credit periods and limits
  • warranty conditions and periods

 

Agree on the specifics of managing the software development process on your side or the vendor’s, monitoring, regular communication via several channels, and coordination across different time zones to ensure transparent and smooth cooperation.

 

Approve a plan of action in case of a failed deadline, inadequate quality, intellectual property infringement or abuse, data breach, emergency, etc.

 

We hope these tips will prove helpful when you hire an offshore development team to realize your ideas or help grow your business. If you’ve read this far, let us tell you how Onix does it.

 

Find Your Offshore Dedicated Developers at Onix

Onix’s clients, both well-established companies and aspiring startups, usually seek specific expertise or aim to launch a product as quickly as possible while optimizing costs. To this end, our company can offer:

 

1. Broad expertise

Onix has been providing custom software development services internationally since 2000. Our specialists have successfully realized hundreds of projects while overcoming thousands of technical and business challenges. The majority of these projects were implemented by dedicated software engineering teams.

 

Adoric, Learning Pool, and miserb&b are just a few examples.

 

 

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Most specialists possess expertise across two or more industries, such as e-commerce, enterprise resource planning, healthcare, FinTech, education, entertainment, social networking, travel, games, and many more. You can see more examples of our work on Onix’s website.

 

2. Variety of software engineers that can make a cross-functional dedicated team 

 

Clients can choose their remote team members from 350+ experienced specialists that perform various tasks, such as:

 

 

Onix’s employees specialize in cloud technology, DevOps, big data, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other tech domains.

 

Our technology stack includes, but is not limited to:

 

Back-end development: РHP, Рython, Node.js, Java, Ruby

 

Front-end development: HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, WordPress, CMS, React

 

Frameworks: Symfony, CodeIgniter, Angular, Vue.js, Django, CakePHP

 

Mobile app development: Android SDK, Kotlin, Flutter.io, iOS SDK, Swift, Objective-C

 

VR/AR and 3D design: Unity 3D, 3D Max, Blender 3D, Visual Studio 

 

Database: PostgreSQL, MongoDB, AWS DynamoDB, MariaDB

 

Cloud storage: AWS, Azure, Google Cloud Platform, Heroku, DigitalOcean

 

CMS: WordPress, Strapi, Moodle, Shopify

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3. Established effective processes

Clients normally entrust assembling their extended/dedicated development team to Onix’s HR group based on their successful experience. We conduct practical tests to vet candidates for each particular project so that each client gets the best-in-class professionals with proven expertise and experience in relevant industries.

 

Most clients also prefer to delegate the team management to Onix’s PMs and Scrum Masters. For over 20 years, they have been perfecting handling workflows, time zones, communications, and cultural differences, as well as their English skills. Communication through video calls, daily stand-ups, live chat, and emails adapts to each client’s requirements. Clear shared goals, regular communication, and consistent progress tracking help clients stay in control.

 

Onix adheres to the Agile approach which speeds up the development of quality products. Dedicated teams build software in small increments through recurring short development cycles. This ensures flexibility on projects with fluid requirements. Teams also continuously monitor user feedback and other metrics and KPIs to improve products and reach the product-market fit.

 

Onix provides reliable technical infrastructure, support, and continued education. On-demand team scaling is available without any recruiting, administrative, or training costs to the client.

 

How to Manage Your Offshore Dedicated Development Team

 

Dedicated offshore teams are mostly self-managed but can be run on the client’s side. The client can usually contact each remote team member and monitor daily activities and overall progress directly, via the project manager, or both.

 

It’s best to get ready to manage remote employees and to organize proper onboarding beforehand.

 

Other tips for successful management of dedicated offshore teams include, but are not limited, to the following:

 

  • Select and agree upon effective, secure, and convenient collaboration tools, namely an email service, a messenger that supports video calls, a video-conferencing application, a file-sharing instrument, and a project management tool including tasks and time tracking.

 

  • Clarify your security expectations, establish procedures to maintain security standards, and promote proper security hygiene for remote developers.

 

  • Publicize the approved workflow processes and project requirements document for your offshore software team members to consult.

 

  • Interact with the remote team regularly. Daily short online meetings are most effective.

 

  • Allocate a synchronized time when your in-house personnel and the offshore software developers can work together and hold virtual meetings.

 

 

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  • Try to plan your schedule to be able to respond to remote workers’ questions during their working day.

 

  • Write everything down, share everything using the agreed optimal communication channel, and don’t rely on informal communication methods. Avoid slang or idioms that leave space for misinterpretation.

 

  • All team members should regularly report what they’re working on.

 

  • Provide feedback after every sprint and iteration.

 

  • Avoid exercising intrusive control and micro-managing remote employees. Remain flexible and make the remote workers comfortable so that they remain creative and innovative for your project.

 

  • Find opportunities for “direct” communication and relationships with your offshore team at the personal level.

  

  • Track the offshore team’s results, e.g., monitor customer satisfaction, the number of features completed, quality of work rated by peers, etc., and modify the strategy and management of your remote workers as needed.

 

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Wrapping up

Cut-throat competition and persistent need for innovation force more and more companies and startups to farm out their software development projects and jobs. Dedicated software engineering teams provide an excellent solution associated with faster development kick-off, flexibility, scalability, high quality, and significant saving of money and effort.

 

If you are looking for an extended/dedicated software team or have any questions, please feel free to contact Onix now. We’ll be happy to help.

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Frequently Asked Questions

 

What is an offshore dedicated team?

An offshore dedicated team is a group of IT specialists based abroad whom a client, i.e. an entity that seeks to outsource its software development needs, typically hires from an outsourced development company, aka agency, contractor, provider, or vendor. ‘Dedicated’ means that the remote software engineering team works full-time only for this client, is exclusively focused on a particular project, and can’t be switched to another. 

 

What are the advantages of a dedicated development team vs fixed-price model?

The scope of fixed-price projects is rigid and cannot be changed, whereas dedicated teams are synonymous with flexibility. They can start the development without the lengthy requirements elicitation, estimations, planning, and complex calculations associated with fixed-time projects. Moreover, on a big project, a vendor would calculate the fixed price to accommodate risks that might exceed 25% of the budget. In the case of dedicated offshore teams, the client pays only for the results actually delivered.

 

Is hiring an offshore dedicated development in Ukraine a good option?

Yes. Ukraine has been a popular outsourcing destination for many years due to its excellent price-quality ratios. A median Ukrainian software developer hourly rate of $30-65 is more competitive than even in neighboring Poland, Bulgaria, or the Czech Republic. Other reasons for outsourcing software development to Ukraine are:

 

  • a huge pool of IT talent
  • the professional and personal qualities of Ukrainian software engineers
  • convenient time zone
  • favorable conditions for outsourcing clients

 

Despite the war, the Ukrainian IT industry is working at full throttle. 77% of companies retained almost all customers and contracts. Even Ukraine’s problems can benefit outsourcing clients, such as IT professionals lowering their salary expectations and agencies becoming more receptive to new opportunities.

 

How to select the best offshore software team?

  • Look for well-established software development outsourcing firms with a broad spectrum of services, reasonable fees, and low staff turnover. Enterprise-grade partners offer the best chance for successful outsourcing.
  • Helpful information is available on Clutch, GoodFirms, or Upwork.
  • Analyze the vendors’ LinkedIn profiles, websites, and portfolios, read reviews and testimonials, and try to contact their former clients.
  • Try to find out whether they follow an Agile methodology, which is a favorable factor.
  • Give preference to teams with a track record of projects in your domain. When you assess the pricing and eligible candidates are pricier than less experienced teams, think of the cost as an investment: the team’s expertise will help reduce the development time and ensure the product’s high quality.

 

Written by:
Serhii  Kholin
Serhii Kholin

COO at Onix-Systems

Effective product development. Aligning an organization's technologies to the needs of the business.

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Mila  Slesar
Mila Slesar

Writer