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Do you consider yourself to be fairly proficient when it comes to Internet technology? If you’re like most small business owners, you’ve had to develop a technical skill set that’s far beyond your core competencies. After all, calling in a technical support service every time you run into a technical glitch can be very expensive.
At a certain point, however, you hit the wall and have to decide whether or it’s actually worth your time to learn and pursue new technical frontiers. More often than not, the question of whether or not to pursue outside technical help is made right around the same time as their decision to upgrade their website.
If you’re faced with the decision to outsource or keep web development services in -house, here are a few things you need to consider.
The In-House Advantage
In the perfect world, businesses like to keep as many services in house as possible, including web design. After all, why take on more expenses than are really necessary? The challenge here is insuring that your return on investment (ROI) is equal, or greater than, the money it would take to get you or employees up to speed on the latest web development skills.
Businesses with their own, in-house, IT departments are at an advantage here because these employees can, obviously, pick up new tech skills faster than lay people.
Of course the biggest advantage to keeping web development in house is that you can keep a much closer handle on the entire process. That, as we’ll see, can be a pretty big deal.
Outsourcing Your Website
Outsourcing your web development projects comes with some very distinct pros and cons. While there’s nothing necessarily wrong with outsourcing, it’s important that you understand these factors before forging ahead.
The biggest advantage of outsourcing is that you buy top-of-the-line skills straight out of the gate. Assuming you’ve done your homework, your outsourced web designer should be versed in the latest development skill and have access to state-of-the-art web design software. When you need to get your project off the ground in a hurry, this is definitely the way to go.
One big downfall to outsourcing is that you’re not in the same building as the designers and, in many cases, you’re not even in the same country as they are. This can cause real slowdowns in the communication process and can slow things up considerably.
You’ll also find that contractors are much more accountable when they’re located in the same city as you are. For that reason, we highly recommend using local contractors over offshore workers.
Oftentimes, the decision to outsource isn’t an all-or-nothing proposition. Some projects may call for you to outsource bits and pieces, but keep most of the work in-house. For example if you’ve already got a top-notch graphics designer working for you, there’s no need to send that work to someone else.
The Internet allow for a level of flexibility that makes the decision to outsource or stay in-house a lot easier than it once was.
Dave Gates works with a web design company in Utah. He also blogs about online marketing and web design.
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