Companies today are presented with a variety of outstaffing and outsourcing services they can choose from to get projects done with some help from outside the house. Still, many companies and startups, in particular, are fond of product development teams that often play a crucial role in the success of the firm. At Ptolemay, we have our small product team that mostly relies on the strengths and talents of each team member in a specific area that leads to a productive workflow and a successful organizational structure.

What Is a Product Development Team?

Product teams most often consist of a small number of members, while each of them is essential to the result. The team cooperates as an orchestra and gets the best out of each employee that leads to a perfect collaboration of equal team members. When one of the members doesn’t work, there is not enough contribution made to the production workflow and the team cannot reach its desired outcome. Similar to how orchestras operate, at the Ptolemay family, we have a product development team of 16 members and each one equally contributes in the area of their expertise that enables us to achieve magnificent results.

What Are Outsourcing and Outstaffing?

Outsourcing and outstaffing on the other hand, are fairly different forms of project management from the product team. These two are a form of outside help that companies refer to when a project cannot be carried out in the house. Firms tend to reach out to companies or hire experts in a particular sphere to help them accomplish a particular task. Yet these two also are not all that alike. Outsourcing is a way of project management that is more focused on the result.

A firm pays a provider or a company to accomplish a task and they simply deliver the result. Outstaffing though, often mentioned as subcontracting, means referring to a company or hiring a staff temporarily that will collaboratively work with the employer to achieve the final product. While outsourcing mainly concentrates to deliver the result, outstaffing is more about the whole work process, besides the hired experts are not accountable for the outcome.

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Product Team?

– Workflow and Organizational Framework (Pro)

In most of the product teams, there is no strict hierarchy among the members, while companies follow a flat organizational structure that strongly encourages expressiveness, flexibility, and innovation. Each team member uses their strengths in a particular area to encourage a dynamic workflow. Product development teams are as well designed for the productive contribution of each member that later brings the desired outcome.

Communication (Pro)

The process of communication in a product team is very effective due to the organizational structure and the management process. For team members, it is quite common to discuss new ideas and plans of the company with the CEO or the head of the firm. This saves the company some very valuable time and accelerates the work process that brings the company faster to the final product.

 – Price (Con)

In terms of the pricing, a product team may sometimes come in more expensive than outstaffing. It often depends on the size of the team, on the equipment needed, and on salaries. If a firm is specializing in a particular field, working with multiple customers, a product team would be more advantageous. When a company is working on projects in different spheres every time, hiring new experts for each field each time would be challenging and expensive, while temporary staff would be very convenient.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Outstaffing?

– Flexible Team Size (Pro)

During the work on a project in a team, every member is crucial for the outcome, however not each of them is still important till the end. Outstaffing allows firms to hire experts temporarily and this lets them cut costs by letting some of the staff leave whenever they finished their parts of contributing to the final product.

Communication and Performance Issues (Con)

When referring to outstaffing, a company may end up with a very experienced employee, although it may face issues with cross-cultural communication. Remote and cross-cultural communication problems can slow down the work process, and finishing a project on time may be put at a risk.

Expertise (Pro and Con)

When a company hires extra staff for a particular project, they may be taking some chance on how experienced the staff will be in their desired field. A firm may end up with some very experienced staff members that will deliver the magnificent result, while they may also be hiring someone that is new to the field and will not be able to contribute enough to the final product.

When and Why Is a Product Team the Better Choice?

There is no single answer of which one between the product development team and outstaffing is the better one every time. It always depends on the circumstances and the requirements of a company. With taking these into account, it can be said, which one is the better choice most of the time.

The product team structure is a great way to manage projects with highly-experienced and necessary professionals that will contribute to delivering a striking final product. A product development team functions like an orchestra, meaning that every member operates together with no hierarchy in the company. This allows each member to express their whole potential and be as innovative and productive as possible.

Companies when constantly working on new projects in a specific field are highly likely to increase profit from a product development team rather than from outstaffing and here is why: Outstaffing may be profitable when a company needs additional employees to finish a project on time, as it would be more logical than hiring a new employee. However, outstaffing increases dependence on third parties and may bring performance and communication issues to the company. While it also has the risks of not knowing how experienced the staff is, how they may work in the field of the given project, and if they will be able to deliver the final product in time, still outstaffing can sometimes be a better choice when it comes to the need of temporary employment.

With that said, a product development team is more likely to achieve the desired outcomes of a company and encourage productiveness and progress. Even though outstaffing has its advantages in some scenarios, a product team has a greater potential of developing a successful final product.


Written by Luka Botchorishvili

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