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When building a startup choosing the right tech team is crucial. Depending on a company’s needs, one may choose from an entire in-house team, delivery-based outsourcing, a dedicated team, outstaffing, and a mix of in-house and outsourced teams. At Aleph One, we believe there are five different tech teams that startups need to know to hire talent and create tech products accordingly.
When hiring a full in-house team, a startup must first have a CTO or tech partner dedicated to building the team and who knows the company’s goals and mission. A full in-house tech team is preferred for Custom or Wild Products because it allows the team to execute particular projects.
This tech team essentially becomes the experts driving the technology or programming knowledge, the “secret sauce” of what makes the startup product successful.
At this stage, having a full in-house team for a Simple product is costly and unnecessary because startups don’t need to hire an engineer or dedicated team. There is already existing technology and solutions for Simple products.
Having an outsourced delivery-based agency or freelancers working with startups is another resourceful solution for developing a tech team. This category is perfect for startups creating Simple Products because they only have to provide the project specs and give it to an agency or freelancer.
This is a more cost-effective solution because of the reduced overhead costs. Startups will not need an infrastructure, administrators, or managers to move the project forward.
Hiring an agency for Custom Products may make sense if the company has fixed costs, specs, and project size. However, it can be hard to navigate because of conflicts of interest and fixed costs, so there is a possibility that projects go over budget. Delivery-based outsourcing would be risky with Custom Products.
Lastly, at this level, delivery-based outsourcing or freelancers would not be viable for Wild Products because they are not designed to invent new technology. These teams can only take on existing technology and apply it to existing business models or features.
A dedicated outsourced team will help bring a startup’s specs to life. This option is perfect for a company creating a Custom Product and needs an agile team to work on the tech and continuously create iterations. Usually, startups will hire more established agencies for this role, and the agencies can support all the way from zero to MVP, production, scale, and even to a possible exit.
At Aleph One, we challenge startups to ask agencies to invest in their product. Asking the agencies to become investors or equity holders in the company will transform the relationship and diminish conflict of interest because agencies will be more incentivized to work together.
As a venture studio and software development company, Aleph One shines at being an outsource dedicated team. We work with Custom Products while at the same time investing 50k-100k in the startups we work with.
Onboarding an In-house and dedicated team makes the most sense when a startup has had a CTO or tech co-founder working on the product, taking on responsibilities, and scaling the product. It is a crucial time for startups producing Custom or Wild products for the company. An in-house and dedicated outsourced team must ensure projects are completed on time and within budget.
The in-house team can allocate specific tasks and give specs to the dedicated team, which will move the project quicker. One of the advantages of having a dedicated team is that they will have more significant access to the talent pool and can assign roles easily and adjust accordingly to the startup’s needs.
This tech team structure also works well with Wild Products because the in-house team can create innovative technology but can have a dedicated agency focus on a particular part of the product. The in-house team becomes managers for the dedicated team and works together to scale the product.
If the startup is an enterprise or global corporation, having an in-house team and outstaffing is necessary to move projects forward. Huge companies like Google, Microsoft, Apple, and Facebook have some of the most talented engineers working on their products. However, due to the speed of technological change, having outstaffing arrangements is necessary at this level.
Finding the right tech team is a significant challenge for startups. Whether hiring a full in-house team, agencies, freelancers, contractors, or a mix of staffing strategies, assessing the organization’s product category is an essential first step. After determining the type of tech product from Simple, Custom, and Wild, startups can begin analyzing which tech team is perfect for their needs.
At Aleph One, we work with startups as a venture studio and dedicated team for Custom Products. Learn more about our venture studio approach and how we can help your startup grow.
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