Pros & Cons of Freelance Vs Development Company
Freelance Developer Pros
- You'll be talking directly with the person who implements your solution and this can speed up the process and lower the chances of confusion (but that doesn't it mean it will.)
- Often, freelancers have lower rates.
- Freelancers tend to be very flexible to your desires (prefer to communicate via tweets? Okay!)
- Service feels more personal.
- Their abilities are more transparent.
Freelance Developer Cons
- Lack of professionalism. Many freelancers see freelancing as simply a vehicle to make money outside of having a job. When this occurs, this one sided and simplistic view of business causes many headaches for their clients.
- Vanishing developer syndrome. When a project has problems, they're behind schedule, you don't like the results, or a friend invited them to party for a week in South Beach, they vanish. See lack of professionalism.
- Poor service. This often displays itself like "good cop, bad cop." Prior to being hired they're friendly and available. Once paid or mid-project they're like dealing with a hormonal teenager. See lack of professionalism.
- Variable results. They have no process in place to create value for your business and because of this results vary. See lack of professionalism.
- Brittle. If your freelancer gets hit by a truck crossing the street, your project stalls while they're in the hospital.
As you can see from the drawbacks, most problems are simply caused by a lack of professionalism. It's tough finding competent and professional freelancers.
Occupying a sliver of the market is the Joomla development company, or agency. Often times, these companies don't actually present themselves as such; they're focused on serving larger businesses and Joomla is only a part of the service they offer.
Development Company Pros
- One stop shopping. Development companies often, though not always, offer layered services that allow them to address multiple issues: design, marketing, seo, programming, and etc.
- Deeper experience pools. Development companies have many people working from them contributing to broader knowledge and experience than just one freelancer.
- Professional service and results. Development companies are more likely to provide professional service. They're in business and not just generating income.
- Better understanding of B2B needs. As businesses, development companies better understand the needs of other businesses.
- Consultant stance. Some development companies not only help you address the problems you need help solving, but also identify opportunities to exploit or larger issues to address.
Development Company Cons
- More costly. Development companies have a staff and overhead to support and they target larger businesses and cost more.
- Less flexible. Development companies have a process for generating results and are less likely to work around any unique service you might desire.
- More impersonal. Working with a team of people often isn't quite as personal as working with an individual.
- Risk of working with a thin company. Some smaller businesses that market themselves as Joomla development companies are little more than a salesperson that outsources projects and adds a margin to your bill. Quality varies widely in the results and the salesperson adds little value because they have no real knowledge of the problems they propose to solve.