As an SME, technology is one area where freelance developers can play a positive role. Before looking at how freelance developers can help your SME, it is essential to understand the need for dedicated software technology in these establishments.
The scarcity of digital skills has increased tremendously owing to the pandemic. The biggest factor affecting small and mid-sized businesses is the lack of worthy professionals to fill up jobs with their competency. According to ICIMS, 60% of tech jobs in the U.S. were filled between 2016 and 2019. With 1,365,500 software developer vacancies in the U.S., only 65,000 developers, especially graduates, get churned out from college every year. Competent freelance developers can easily fill the demand for those positions at cost-effective rates.
Need for dedicated software tools and technology
SMEs need advanced and the latest technology for their purposes. Time is crucial for any business with an SME on board. Manual labour takes a lot of time which can easily be saved with software tools. Each business requires to have dedicated software tools suited to its needs. Integrating these tools is necessary as they save time, money, and effort. To start on the right foot, an SME requires these software tools
Bookkeeping and Accounting Software
Project Management Software
Customer Relationship Management Software
Website Management Software
Sales and Marketing Software
While these tools are readily available, they may not suit the needs of the SME. Dedicated software is advisable for these companies as they offer some advantages.
They eliminate the need to align your needs to that of the ready-made software.
They fulfil specific purposes of your business.
They save time and effort in due course of time
Management of operations becomes efficient and effective
Effective tools ensure cost-effective operations in the long run
Some of the challenges have pertinent solutions too
However, for an SME, this can be challenging. The biggest challenge is investing in software infrastructure and tools with the help of available financial resources.
A versatile software development in-house team: Creating a versatile software development team in-house will also burden their finances. After all, experienced software developers demand high remuneration.
Multilingual software: Moreover, each developer specializes in certain languages required for developing specific software tools. Hence, a team of developers will be required to develop tools for individual business requirements. This factor can be cost-prohibitive for an SME.
Recruit developers: Finding the right software developers takes time and effort. Spending time on finding and employing developers can turn to a disadvantage. Valuable time and effort can be used in other areas like planning and managing routine business operations.
Need for In-house H.R.: Hiring a team of software specialists will require an in-house team of Human Resource specialists. This hiring again will call for time, effort, and money. While large organizations must have an H.R. team for personnel management, it will be a futile waste of resources for an SME.
How can SMEs Benefit from using Freelance Developers
Small and Medium Enterprises can gain a lot by using freelance software developers. Apart from the monetary advantage discussed earlier, other advantages are:
1. No need for a dedicated workspace
Workspace is an expensive resource. Employing a developer team would mean allocating precious workspace to it. This aspect may prove prohibitive for an SME. Freelance developers work either from home or from a rented workspace. This arrangement means that the SME can operate from a smaller workspace that seats only the small workforce needed for day-to-day operations.
2. Using global software talent
Freelance developers offer their services on global platforms. Regardless of the nature of your SME, a talented developer can be found anywhere in the world. This approach is far better than employing a developer from a closer location who may not be as talented.
3. Need-based work allocation
Each freelance developer has expertise in specific software languages. Most often, they have mastered a particular area of software development. Depending on the software tool to develop, a specific freelancer can be assigned to the task. This aspect gives an advantage of getting the best for a brief period.
4. Availability of updated personnel
There is stiff competition among freelance software developers. The best among them strive to stay a step above their competition. Hence, they constantly keep track of updates in their area of expertise. They make it a point to invest in training themselves with any development in the coding language or any new software development tool.
5. On-demand any time
Time is a significant contributor to the success of an SME. Unlike employees who work as per their employment schedule, freelance developers are available on demand anytime. It is only a matter of looking up the list of developers that suit your software needs
Freelance software development offers flexibility. Adaptations and upgrades become more straightforward for your company. Freelance software developers are always keen to offer flexibility as an advantage to be one up over their competitors. Long-term commitment is no longer needed on the part of the SME. The SME even gets the flexibility to ramp up or tone down as need be.
7. Preference for remote working among specialized developers
An emerging number of specialist software developers are opting for remote work. They prefer the work-life balance over time spent at the workplace and commuting to and from. SMEs can use this growing talent pool to achieve their software development needs.
SMEs demand undivided attention and focus on terms of business operations. Software development need not be your key focus area at this point, especially in terms of keeping your staff in-house. Freelance developers are more than equipped to help offer I.T. solutions with the scalability of resources, allowing them to break free from an unmanageable workforce.
Their expertise is available without the need for employment and the challenge of paying salaries each month. All the stakeholders in the SME can put more effort into planning and executing the growth of the business diverting resources towards productive and profitable channels.