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IT Staff Augmentation vs. Traditional Hiring: Detailed Comparison


As an employer, one of the most difficult tasks you have to go through is making hires, whatever size your business is. If you are facing the same situation, you are not alone. Almost every manager has to tackle such a situation. As technology is evolving at an extraordinary frequency, companies need specialized technical expertise. These skill sets help them in innovation, creativity, and adapting to the latest trends. However, recruitment of the right IT staff can be unnerving. Also, it is quite challenging to determine the most appropriate staffing option.

IT staff augmentation and traditional (full-time) hiring are two widespread staffing possibilities that businesses often consider. Both options have their pros and cons. But selecting the correct choice for your business depends on various aspects. 

In this article, we’ll compare in detail IT staff augmentation and traditional hiring to help you determine the option which is best for your business.

IT Staff Augmentation vs. Traditional Hiring

 CriteriaIT Staff AugmentationTraditional Hiring
1.Recruitment TimeAugmentation is a speedy process. It doesn’t take much time.Traditional hiring is rather slow as it requires a long procedure for recruitment.
2.SkillsetThe expertise provided under this approach is diversified and flexible.Candidates are selected for having static proficiencies for the required job post.
3.CostThis is a more cost-effective and economical model.Higher costs are involved due to long recruitment procedures.
4.TrainingModerate or no training is required as the appointed staff is expert in their fields.Requires extensive training according to the job requirements.
5.ManagementThe augmentation services provider firm or agency takes care of managing the augmented staff.The in-house HR team is responsible for the management of internal employees.
6.Length of CommitmentIt is usually project-based. When the venture is over, commitment automatically ends.It is long-term or ongoing as it is a full and permanent hiring.
7.Right of OwnershipThe right of the project is with the client who hires augmented staff.All the ownership rights belong to the employer only.
8.RisksCommunication, integration, or compatibility issues between augmented staff and the in-house team may arise.It is sometimes hard to find the right candidate for the job or the hiring process may take too long.

What is IT Staff Augmentation?

IT staff augmentation is the process of hiring IT experts in the in-house team without hiring them as permanent staff.  The augmentation model offers businesses the opportunity to utilize a diverse pool of IT talent without incurring high staffing costs. Moreover, staff augmentation allows companies the flexibility to alter their staff size based on project needs. Also, it is a cost-effective way to scale the IT workforce according to the requirements as it is just a temporary contract.

Advantages of IT Staff Augmentation

1.      Access to a diverse skillset

IT staff augmentation provides a wide and assorted variety of professionals for the specific project. These individuals are experts in their fields and have specialized proficiency in the venture.

2.      Quick recruitment

As the focus in the hiring process is on finding the right candidate so the time taken for sourcing, screening, and onboarding is reduced to a great extent. Thus, the project deadlines are met quickly due to agility in the hiring process.

3.      Cost-effectiveness

Instead of incurring miscellaneous expenses on training, infrastructure, or full-time employee benefits, companies can gain the benefit of hiring staff temporarily. This results in a budget-friendly environment for the company where there is no need for paying long hours to permanent employees.

4.      Flexibility

Companies sometimes need to scale up or down their staff as and when the project evolves according to the venture requirements. This flexibility ensures agility and offers efficient resource allocation by providing the right talent at the right time.

5.      No long-term commitments

Unlike traditional hiring, IT staff augmentation runs temporarily. This means that when the project ends, there is no need to retain the augmented staff beyond the fixed timeframe.

Disadvantages of IT Staff Augmentation

1.      Minimal training

It is pre-assumed that the hired IT staff have all the required expertise so training is avoided. However, this may be harmful to the internal staff as they may require specific training for the project. This problem can be solved by enhanced collaboration between both teams so they work for a mutual goal.

2.      Accelerated learning curve

As the nature of IT staff augmentation is temporary, the hired staff may find it hard to understand the internal system, processes, and culture. So, companies must implement proper coordination and knowledge transfer strategies to ensure seamless integration.

3.      Lack of Dedication

Since the hired augmentation team does not have that sense of devotion to the organization, this may affect the level of engagement and alignment with the project. By fostering a culture of teamwork, the augmented staff can actively participate and deliver the required results.

What is Traditional Hiring?

Traditional hiring refers to the conventional procedure of hiring employees within an organization. It usually involves a long and detailed procedure including posting jobs, receiving applications, and conducting interviews. After this, candidates are selected based on their qualifications, experience, and the company’s requirements. In this approach, firms normally use internal HR departments for recruitment. The employee thereby selected is offered a contract and permanent position thus rendering long-term commitment. Hence, this is the method most commonly used by organizations all over the world for years.

Advantages of Traditional Hiring

1.      Increased Commitment

As full-time employees have long-term commitment and dedication to the company, they are more aligned toward achieving common goals. This devotion results in increased levels of accountability, engagement, and overall success of the business.

2.      Staff training

Companies arrange special training programs for their permanent staff to develop a particular skill set that is required for the project. Thus, it establishes a sense of confidence among the employees that the employer is concerned with their learning and growth process.

3.      Long-term staffing solution

The more time an employee spends working for the company, the more loyal he becomes. This is the essence of traditional hiring that full-time staff have greater devotion rather than the augmented staff. This makes them more reliable, sustainable, and efficient.

Disadvantages of Traditional Hiring

1.      High costs

The traditional approach involves higher costs of advertisement, hiring, screening, and recruiting. It is also a time-consuming and long procedure. Moreover, companies also have to conduct training programs for the new hires which further adds up to the overall expenses.

2.      Long-term Commitment

There remains less or no flexibility to scale your team as the project demands fluctuate. So, companies can face challenges in resource allocation as they have to maintain a fixed workforce whether needed or not.

3.      More Responsibilities over Employers

The company has to bear all the responsibility whether it is providing benefits or any other administrative support. All this requires an additional burden on the human resource department to ensure a positive staff experience.

Final Thoughts

In short, organizations have two staffing options with them, augmentation and traditional hiring. The right choice for business depends on various factors. IT staff augmentation is the solution if the project requires flexible staff, a swift recruitment process, diverse talent, HR, and administrative support. However, traditional hiring works best if you need a long-term obligation and complete project rights.

So, consider your business needs, the scope of the project, and budget limitations while making your decision. Both options have pros and cons. Hence, selecting the right one for your venture ultimately determines the success of your IT projects.

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