As blockchain technology continues to gain traction, many companies are exploring how they can incorporate it into their businesses.
A key decision they face is whether to hire blockchain developers in-house or outsource the work to a specialized blockchain development company.
There are merits and drawbacks to each approach although outsourcing blockchain development often provides more advantages compared to relying solely on in-house teams.
Outsourcing to a Blockchain Development Company
Domain Expertise – Experienced blockchain development firms have worked on a wide array of client projects. They have hard-won knowledge across different blockchains, protocols, APIs, smart contracts, consensus algorithms and industries.
Talent Flexibility – Vendors provide access to an ecosystem of developers, architects, DevOps engineers, security auditors and designers. Teams are sized and customized to your project needs.
Cost Efficiency – Paying for consulting hours or fixed-bid contracts is often cheaper than hiring the same skill sets full-time. The outsourcing model provides variable spending.
Speed & Scalability – Established vendors can scale up quickly for your project and hit the ground running. They provide on-demand bandwidth versus slowly building an internal team.
Latest Tech Skills – Blockchain technology evolves rapidly. Vendors stay on top of the latest skills and tools to deliver leading-edge solutions, which may be cost-prohibitive internally.
Control Loss – You must align priorities, workflows and roadmaps with an outside company. Less control over the end product and IP compared to in-house teams.
Lack of Ownership – Vendors finish work and move on to other clients. There is less incentive to go the extra mile or build institutional knowledge about your company over the long-term.
Integrations Difficulty – Integrating work done by contractors can be challenging and lead to subpar results. Full-time teams better understand existing systems and tech stack.
Communication Gaps – Communicating complex requirements is tougher with outside vendors. Nuance gets lost versus collaborating face-to-face with internal colleagues.
Long-Term Costs – Though initially cheaper, consulting fees can add up over time versus the fixed cost of employees. And changing vendors means knowledge loss.
Blockchain Hiring: In-House Blockchain Developers
More Control – With in-house developers, you have full control over the project vision, timeline, code, and IP. You don’t have to compromise or coordinate with an outside vendor’s priorities or processes.
Institutional Knowledge – Internal teams build experience and knowledge working specifically on your company’s blockchain needs. They become domain experts over time as opposed to a development shop that works on wide-ranging client projects.
Better Cultural Fit – Employees you directly hire are more likely to fit your company’s culture versus third-party contractors. Having an in-sync team leads to smoother collaboration.
Ownership & Commitment – In-house developers tend to feel more invested in projects compared to external vendors who finish work and move on. Internal teams are dedicated to your company’s success.
Security – Sensitive information like private keys remain in-house. No need to share details with an outside company when hiring contractors. Keeping key blockchain knowledge internal reduces security risks.
High Cost – Employing dedicated blockchain developers full-time is expensive. You need funding to pay consistent salaries, benefits, equipment, training and overhead.
Retention Difficulty – Blockchain talent is scarce. After investing to train in-house teams, you risk losing them to competitor job offers or their own startup ideas.
Lack of Flexibility – With full-time staff, you lose flexibility to scale up and down on demand as priorities shift. Hiring/layoffs take more time versus using a vendor.
Lack of Specialization – Most companies only need blockchain skills for specific use cases. Internal teams may spend time on technologies not directly relevant to your needs.
There are good arguments on both sides of the in-house vs outsourced blockchain developers debate.
Ultimately, the optimal approach depends on the specific circumstances and strategic priorities of each organization.
However, in general terms, outsourcing blockchain development often provides more advantages compared to relying solely on in-house teams:
- Access to Specialized Talent
- Flexibility and Scalability
- Cost Efficiencies
- Focus on Core Competencies
- Shared Risk
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