Nearshoring In Latin America – No Need To Commute To Compute

Early this year, Forbes published an article titled “Is Remote Work Dying A Fast Death?” The article, which suggested that with the reopening of economies after the COVID-19 pandemic, the work-from-home model will slowly fade away, voiced the thoughts and fears of many. However, nothing could be further from the truth.

While the current decline in the number of people working from home as compared to the pandemic days was inevitable, the remote workforce model is not just about to disappear like it never existed. No — you can’t just go back to 2019, mandate everybody back into the office, continue working like nothing happened, and hope to succeed.

In this article, we’ll demonstrate why remote work is here to stay, compare outsourcing vs. insourcing, and explain why nearshore staff augmentation through the hybrid work model is the solution. We’ll also discuss why Latin America should be the first on your list when you’re considering different nearshoring destinations, especially for tech talent.

Remote Work Is An Established Model Of Work Now

Photo from Pixabay

The truth is that remote work is not going anywhere anytime soon. Fight it, and your product competitiveness is likely to suffer. Sure, there are trade-offs: meeting face-to-face feels right, current workplace online collaboration technologies have their own limitations, and in-person bonding seems more natural. Similarly, you’re likely to nurture your company better in an in-office setup. 

However, on the other side of the coin is another fundamental fact that you cannot ignore — modern-day customers demand better products faster and cheaper, and your competition is not local – it’s global for most companies! As a result, competing by utilizing only local resources – not just labor but also ideas and creativity – will not give you the competitive edge you require to move forward.

The remote vs. in-office debate has been ongoing since time immemorial. While both options have their fair share of windfalls and drawbacks, the advantages of remote work seem to carry the day. That’s why, in a recent Intuition survey, over 78% of CEOs said they believe that remote collaboration should be a long-term business strategy

Insourcing vs. Outsourcing: Why Nearshore Staff Augmentation Is The Perfect Solution

While outsourcing remote talent offers more flexibility, going this route means you have to forgo all the benefits of insourcing. For a technology company or even a tech-savvy entity, this approach sounds like total madness. Depending on your organization, it might make sense for a certain percentage of your employees to be in the office a few days a week, but generally, “you don’t need to commute to compute.”

What if we told you that you can enjoy the perks of insourcing and outsourcing simultaneously?

At DevEngine, we offer and push for nearshore staff augmentation over outsourcing. Based on our experience, we understand that you and only you should be in charge of creating and shaping your product; nobody else can do it better. Whether you want temporary cybersecurity experts to analyze your security posture or long-term staff to bridge skill gaps, we are here to help. We can assist you in structuring your team correctly and augment it where it makes sense.

To stay competitive in today’s fast-evolving business world, you must be creative. Suppose your goal is to nurture some junior engineers fresh off school. In that case, we can arrange a temporary local office in, say, Buenos Aires to have junior engineers on-site a few times a week so that they can learn, socialize, and understand the culture you are trying to build. Similarly, if you need a few days of face-to-face teamwork on-site at the start of an upcoming project, we can set this up. Or do you have a critical project that risks stalling? No worries — we can get you senior solutions architects on a plane heading to you or your client’s local office in no time. 

The Benefits of Nearshore Staff Augmentation in Latin America

According to a recent Accenture study, over 63% of high-growth businesses have already adopted the hybrid work model. The research further shows that 83% of employees prefer organizations that allow them to be productive regardless of their physical location. 

The irony is that despite this established trend of the “productive anywhere” work model, several people still mislabel the idea of nearshoring software development to Latin America as outsourcing. For the record, it’s not. Instead, nearshore staff augmentation is an intelligent strategy that can help you keep your operations agile and enhance your business’s competitiveness in the global marketplace. It’s important to keep in mind that with nearshoring, you’re not passing off work; you’re rather expanding your team across borders without the disconnect that traditional outsourcing can bring.

Below are some benefits you may draw from nearshore staff augmentation:

  1. Reduced hiring costs

Sometimes, you may want to hire software developers for just a limited time. In such cases, the best option is to hire these experts temporarily through staff augmentation. Doing so allows you to access high-quality talent without spending as much in hiring, monthly salaries, other employee benefits, and overheads as you would have if you employed these developers full-time. 

Remote software augmentation can also reduce the time taken to recruit software developers, enabling you to limit productivity loss. Studies show that hiring a full-time on-site developer takes approximately 30 days — days that you could have rather spent on other essential tasks. Comparatively, when you hire remote staff to augment your in-house team, you’re not likely to spend that much time on recruitment, interviews, and onboarding. When you hire through us, we can handle everything, from recruitment all the way to employee management.

  1. Access to a wider talent pool

The on-site work model limits you to hiring IT talent within your locality or those who are willing to relocate to your area. Comparatively, when you embrace remote software augmentation, you can work with talented developers from as far as Point Nemo. With this flexibility, you have more chances of getting experts that suit your unique business needs and budget, enabling you to achieve your business objectives more effectively and efficiently.

  1. Retain control over crucial projects

With IT increasingly becoming integral to everyday business processes, it’s understandable that you might not be comfortable entrusting your entire IT infrastructure to some random strangers from an offshore outsourcing firm. 

“What if they don’t have the requisite skills? Will they fully understand your project specifications and objectives? What if they’re malicious cyber actors masquerading as IT support companies?”

These questions must have crossed your mind at one point. Right? Well, in nearshore staff augmentation, the external experts come on board to work alongside your in-house team. If you have the above reservations, you can assign one of your internal employees to manage the project and oversee quality assurance. Doing so gives you more control over your operations while still allowing you to leverage high-quality external expertise.

  1. Ease of Scalability

As market conditions change, you might need to occasionally upscale or downscale your tech staff. Upscaling through full-time hires might not be financially prudent, especially for SMBs with fluctuating market conditions and IT needs — it will mean paying hefty salaries to dormant specialists who are only useful at specific peak hours. Comparatively, staff augmentation allows you to hire these experts on a project basis. This approach enables you to scale up and down as your IT support needs evolve and only pay for what you need.

  1. Faster time to market

In today’s fast-paced global market, clients are not only concerned about your product’s quality but also how fast you can deliver them. As a result, the need for speedy delivery is paramount now, more than ever. Staff augmentation can help you access competent professionals to streamline and expedite your processes, thereby achieving faster time to market. Doing so enables you to take advantage of new market opportunities ahead of other companies within your niche, giving you a competitive edge. 

Data And Software Dev Services You Can Hire Remote Teams For 

Nearshore staff augmentation can help you relieve pressure from your existing in-house team, enhancing their efficiency. Depending on your business needs or project specifications, the following are a few tasks you can allocate to the external experts:

Outsourced software development

Software development is generally a time-consuming and labor-intensive process that requires an in-depth understanding of coding, cloud computing, data science, machine learning, cybersecurity, and a myriad of other specialized skills. A typical software development project takes 3 -6 months, or even longer, depending on its complexity and deliverables. 

Even if your in-house staff has the requisite skills, committing six months to one project at the expense of other core tasks might not be the best use of their time. Staff augmentation allows you to bring in external experts to handle the routine aspects of software development as your in-house team focuses on their regular responsibilities. You can assign one or two internal engineers to work alongside the external team to ensure the project follows your specifications and addresses your organization’s unique needs. 

Data Management & Security

Source: Photo from Pixabay

The increased integration of tech into business processes streamlines operations, enhances efficiency and accuracy, and reduces operational costs through automation. However, with these benefits also comes the challenge of cybersecurity. It’s no secret that cyber breach incidents have been on a constant upward trajectory for most of the last few years. In 2022, studies show that global cyberattacks rose by 38%.

The surprising fact is that the increased adoption of tech is not the leading cause of these breaches. No. Instead, according to Verizon’s 2022 Data Breaches Report, about 82% of cyberattacks result from staff negligence. With the average cost of a data breach at 4.45 million per incident, you cannot afford to have lackluster talent managing your data security.

With staff augmentation, you can outsource the best cybersecurity experts from LATAM at a reasonable fee. These experts can oversee your entire IFT infrastructure’s security, from designing and implementing intrusion detection and prevention strategies to regular network assessment, in-house staff cyber awareness training, and compliance enforcement. Alternatively, you can call them on a need-only basis, such as when you want to implement new technologies or when you need help recovering from a breach.

IT infrastructure management

Any slight malfunction of your IT infrastructure can significantly harm your employees’ productivity. Depending on your organization’s tech reliance level, downtime from such inconveniences can cost you approximately $100,000 – 1.5 million per hour. You can avoid these losses by creating a dedicated remote IT infrastructure management team to augment your in-house employees’ efforts. The outsourced team can handle recurrent network, systems, and storage management tasks like routine checks, software updates, security audits, and storage provisioning to ensure your IT infrastructure delivers optimum performance all the time.

Backup and disaster recovery

Another service you can hire nearshore experts to help your IT team with is backup management and data recovery. Data is the new oil. Therefore, the fact that most cloud storage services offer automated backups does not mean you should lower your guard. When that dreaded breach comes, your backups are your only recourse. Unless you have enough in-house personnel to manage your backups, it might help to list the services of an experienced external team. 

Nearshore Staff Augmentation Trends

The past few years have come with tremendous changes to the workplace. To stay ahead of the curve, it’s crucial to understand emerging trends and adapt accordingly. With that in mind, here’s a rundown of some recent nearshore staff augmentation trends that’ll definitely extend to 2024 and beyond.

#1 The rise of freelance platforms

As more executives embrace the hybrid work model, we can expect the increasing reliance on freelance platforms for hiring to get even higher. According to recent research by the Harvard Business School, dubbed Managing The Future Of Work, almost half of senior business owners and managers believe the usage of digital hiring platforms will surge significantly in the future. Leading freelance platforms like Upwork and Fivver are already making billions annually.

#2 Increased use of “Bossware” to track remote workers’ productivity

One of the main reasons some executives are hellbent on maintaining onsite staff is the ease of monitoring productivity. If this is what’s preventing you from leveraging high-quality remote software developers, technology has a solution for you. You can now install bossware on client devices to collect data on their attendance, time, and productivity. These nifty software programs monitor the sites that employees visit during work hours, take regular screenshots, and record crucial metrics like mouse movements and the number of times they’ve tapped their keyboards. They can help you oversee remote teams to ensure they’re productive from miles away.

#3 More emphasis on cybersecurity 

With remote employees working out of sight, it’s more challenging to ensure they’re abiding by your cybersecurity protocols. Therefore, there’s a growing need to implement more stringent security measures to ensure off-site staff do not expose you to breaches. Some intrusion detection and prevention protocols more companies are likely to implement moving forward include:

  • The principle of least privilege (POLP) to ensure remote teams only access specific data whenever they need it.
  • More stringent password expiration and complexity protocols
  • Multi-factor authentication
  • More regular network security audits and software updates 
  • Increased usage of VPNs 
  • Employee cyber awareness training

#4 Virtual interview tools gain traction

While virtual interviews gained significant popularity during the COVID-19 days, most companies are yet to go back to conventional onsite recruitment. A 2021 survey by SHRM showed that 93% of employers who adopted virtual interviews during the pandemic planned to continue using this model even after normalcy returned. A similar study by Jobvite showed that 61% of executives planned to mix virtual and in-person interview methods. As a result, we’ll likely see increased adoption of virtual interview tools like Zoom, VidCruiter, HireVue, Hirefoux, and Willo.

Bespoke IT Staff Augmentation Solutions in LATAM

One of the greatest beneficiaries of the increased adoption of staff augmentation in the US and Canada is Latin America. In the past few years, the region has grown to become a popular source of nearshore tech talent to its neighbors. 

However, these gains haven’t come without any sacrifices. LATAM countries have intentionally invested in IT-related courses over the last couple of decades. For example, the Brazilian government’s efforts to nurture tech talent have culminated in globally renowned universities like de São Paulo and Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. 

Besides education, most Latin American countries have also created favorable laws to incentivize outsourcing to this region. For example, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, and Colombia are signatories to the World Intellectual Property Organization’s treaties. Therefore, when hiring remote workers from them, you don’t have to worry about them stealing your copyrighted intellectual properties. Similarly, most of these countries offer tax breaks, grants, and subsidies to make the region more attractive for nearshore staff augmentation.

Other factors that make LATAM the perfect staff augmentation destination include:

  • Time zone alignment, enabling easy real-time collaboration
  • Cultural similarities with most parts of the US
  • A vast pool of high-quality software developers
  • Firm grasp of English

Nearshore Staff Augmentation With DevEngine

At DevEngine, our approach is different. We’re not just offering bodies to fill chairs; we’re offering minds to fulfill visions. By helping you integrate Latin American talent into your team, we enable you to gain a diversity of thought and a richness of perspective that is often lost when sticking strictly to local hiring or traditional outsourcing routes.

Why hire through us? Well, we’ve been helping companies like yours secure top-tier LATAM tech talent since 2019. Our reputation precedes us. When working with us:

  • We can handle everything from recruitment to onboarding and employee management
  • We treat you as an individual client with unique business needs
  • You don’t have to share your talent with others as we allocate dedicated employees per customer
  • We can organize on-site visits at your request
  • You don’t have to worry about the employees’ competence because we have a rigorous vetting process
  • We’ll agree on the service fee upfront to ensure transparency
  • You’re guaranteed personalized care and prompt responses as we work with a limited number of customers at a time

The more remote work cements itself into the professional landscape, the more the concept of ‘office’ becomes more fluid and more dynamic. As we peer into the near future, technology will certainly further reshape the very fabric of remote collaboration. Nearshoring is all about making your team more robust, more responsive, and better suited for the global stage.  With it, time zones align, and you get the chance to work with software developers who share your work ethic and culture, making collaboration smoother and more efficient. The foresight to build a seamless, augmented team now will position you leaps and bounds ahead of the curve. 

Embrace nearshoring in LATAM with DevEngine as part of your evolution into a future where work is actually what you do – efficiently, creatively, and globally.