How To Build and Manage Outsourced Teams

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Outsourcing teams is a surefire way to jumpstart development on your next project.

Offshore outsourcing tends to get a bad rep, but it’s a lot more nuanced than you might think.

In fact, back office offshore outsourcing — that is, when outsourcing is used for internal teams rather than front-facing roles — is shown to increase customer loyalty.

Outsourcing is an appealing strategy for businesses that need human resources but don’t have the time or money to secure them manually.

That said, even building and managing an outsourced team takes some effort. But learning how to do this is just a few scrolls away.

If you want to find out more about outsourced teams and how you can use them, you’re in the right place!

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What Is Outsourcing?

When you think of outsourcing, you likely imagine a thickly accented customer service voice answering your call from several time zones away.

This does describe a version of outsourcing that exists. But outsourcing is used for a wide range of purposes across the globe.

By definition, outsourcing refers to the practice of hiring a third party to complete a service or supply goods for your business. 

Outsourcing is more popular than you know. Most major companies use outsourcing to enhance business operations.

WhatsApp, that app where you message your favorite uncle from time to time, had only 55 employees in 2014.

But in order to grow your business, you need help. And it’s not shameful to admit it.

Now, Whatsapp outsources a good part of their software development team from Russia.

Similarly, Apple, the tech company known for its infamous iPhones, outsources most of its manufacturing to China.

Manufacturing aside, India is largely responsible for the back-end software of Apple products.

Either way, it’s clear that the United States doesn’t always provide the best talent pool for meeting business objectives.

Yet, business processes do not halt just because in-house teams fall short.

Why Are Companies Using Outsourced Teams?

For the most part, companies use outsourced teams to reduce costs.

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As an illustration, Brazil remains one of the top countries to look for outsourced teams based on its financial attractiveness.

Due to low labor costs, outsourcing in South America has become immensely popular, but businesses still gain access to expert talent in spite of the price drop.

Some business owners also want to focus on core business processes.

They may want their internal team to handle the tasks that are central to business activity. But solving computer issues and setting up firewalls can be left to IT outsourcing providers.

Another big reason people choose to outsource is to address capacity issues.

For instance, a business may have a 12-month project that requires specialized developers without the capacity to hire new people.

Outsourced teams are flexible and on-demand, making it easy to avoid recruiting and staffing issues. 

To a lesser extent, companies choose to use outsourced teams for the following reasons:

  • Improve services
  • Manage their business environment
  • Accelerate organizational transformation

How To Build an Outsourced Team

Traditional outsourcing models can sometimes feel impersonal.

In project-based outsourcing, you’re expected to give control of your project to a trusted outsourcing agency.

Except, trust doesn’t always come easy. Especially when traditional outsourcing models don’t make much room for connecting as humans first.

You may also feel wary about giving up control. And there are security risks to navigate as well since you do not have full ownership of your product.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

It’s important that your project gets done on time and on budget, but it’s also important that dedicated teams are the forerunners of your success.

You don’t only want people to work for you. You want people to work with you. 

Staff augmentation and/or distributed teams envision a model of outsourcing where you truly do work together as a team.

These outsourcing models generally make outsourced teams feel more like software development partners and less like robots.

They seamlessly integrate within your team and adapt to the work culture you’ve built.

If this is what you want, go for it. The only question is where to find a team that fits what you’re looking for.

Well, here’s a short overview:

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Identify Business Requirements

Knowing what you want is the first step in learning how to get it. Ask yourself what you want to build and how.

You could employ Agile, for example, a software development methodology that prioritizes fast delivery and customer feedback.

Or you could use a version of Agile called Scrum, which does the same using sprints.

The tech stack you employ is relevant too. Some programming languages and frameworks favor game development while others favor mobile app development.

Your developers will be qualified to maneuver certain technologies and methodologies better than others, so obtain a thorough understanding of your project requirements.

Search Reputable Sources

Second, you have to know where to look. Google is tremendously helpful.

Simply searching outsourcing companies will do you a world of good. This will probably lead you to a few handy marketplaces that list IT services for your convenience.

But if you want something more specific, don’t be afraid to plug in a location, such as ‘South American software outsourcing’ in the Google search bar.

Give due credit to referrals from friends and colleagues. Often, this is the most reliable way to get a good recommendation.

Consult With Your Outsourced Team

Once you’ve found your team, you need to be as detailed as possible in communicating project requirements.

Orchestrate a requirements analysis to give a clear picture of the deliverables your outsourced team should put forth. 

At the earliest stages, this consultation should involve everybody on the team understanding the specification of your project.

Gather information and documentation where applicable.

How To Manage an Outsourced Team?

Naturally, using an outsourced team means you won’t be within earshot of the people you’re working with.

Managing a remote team can be difficult, but it is by no means impossible. Your priorities, in this case, should be communication and fostering a welcoming work culture.


Language barriers and time zone differences make it difficult to understand one another.

If you hire developers close to home, then at least language will be less of a coin toss.

And you can resolve time zone differences by syncing schedules.

But even when you’re all at the table, speaking the same language, miscommunication still arises.

Your greatest repellant against miscommunication is frequent check-ins. Check-in on how team members are doing, all at once and as individuals.

Do this without micromanaging. You can use remote work tools to stay up-to-date without hovering over someone’s back.

The best tools for remote work include, but are not limited to:

  • Trello, a project management dashboard where you can use cards to arrange tasks
  • Slack, a messenger app for businesses where you can create channels to communicate with different teams
  • Zoom, a video-conferencing application that allows several people within your organization to participate in a meeting

Work Culture

Curating your work culture is a bit more difficult, but you get out of it what you put in.

For that same reason, managing expectations is a good place to start. You want to build a flexible workplace where people feel they can come to you with questions or concerns. 

See people as people and not as tools.

People want criticism that is constructive, not insulting. People want opportunities for career growth. People want clear and direct goals. And people want people who believe in them.

In general, this is what compels developers to do their best work — recognition for the value they bring both as people and talented software engineers.

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Hire an Outsourced Team at Trio

Trio lends outsourced teams to businesses in need. At Trio, developers learn how to communicate effectively and code efficiently.

Trio developers can tackle any project that comes their way. And they’re even more excited to do it as part of a distributed team.

Trio offers unparalleled software wisdom and access to Latin American developers. Meet our elite Argentinean, Chilean, and Brazilian developers for outsourcing excellence.

Interested in working with Trio? Contact Trio now to stop searching and start developing!

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With over 10 years of experience in software outsourcing, Alex has assisted in building high-performance teams before co-founding Trio with his partner Daniel. Today he enjoys helping people hire the best software developers from Latin America and writing great content on how to do that!
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