February 1, 2023

Agency vs In-House: Getting More for Less with a Mobile App Team

the fortnight agency team
The Fortnight Team

With the increasing demand for mobile apps, mobile app design and development has become a vital aspect of any modern business looking to thrive in the modern world. The age-old question comes up…agency or in-house team? Companies have two options for designing and developing their apps: building an in-house team or working with a mobile app design and development studio like Fortnight. While both options have their advantages, working with a mobile app design and development studio has several benefits over building an in-house team.

Our partners, Thursday, came to us having already bootstrapped their fast-growing dating app for singles. With their in-house team small and not ready to grow, we worked together to collaborate and design a better product their users loved. While we are a studio, we want to act as an extension of your in-house team, providing them with the knowledge and domain expertise to support their own growth.

Let’s break down the main areas where we think there are the biggest advantage for hiring a mobile app design and development studio:

Advantages of Using an Agency vs In-House

Access to Expertise: One of the biggest advantages of working with a mobile app design and development studio is access to a team of experts with a wealth of experience and knowledge in the field. This means that you will be working with professionals who have the skills, tools, and knowledge to deliver high-quality mobile app solutions. In contrast, building an in-house team can take a significant amount of time and resources to assemble the right team with the right skills and expertise.

Working with a team like Fortnight means you access a wealth of talent who have worked on some of the biggest apps in the app store, such as Bumble, Simba, and even consumer electronics brand OnePlus

Cost-Effective: Working with a mobile app design and development studio can be more cost-effective than building an in-house team. This is because you only pay for the services you need, without having to incur the costs of hiring, training, and retaining a full-time in-house team.

With most projects, you have access to a product manager, head of design, UX/UI designer, QA, frontend and backend developers and more depending on the complexity of your product. It is estimated that a team of this size in-house would cost between £15,000 and £30,000 per month, while setup costs for recruitment and training could increase this by x2 in the early stages. 

Find out how much it costs to build an app, looking at time, complexity, experience and more.

Flexibility: Another advantage of working with a mobile app design and development studio is flexibility. A studio can quickly respond to changes in your project requirements and can scale up or down its resources based on your needs. In contrast, building an in-house team can be a slow and inflexible process.

Studios have been there and done that, so they know the need to be adaptable. Fortnight understands the importance of testing and iteration, with many projects changing scope due to the ever-changing needs of the app's users. An in-house team might not have this knowledge yet.

Quality Control: Mobile app design and development studios have established quality control processes in place to ensure that projects are delivered on time and within budget. This level of quality control is not always easy to achieve when building an in-house team. Especially for startups with a small budget, quality control is usually then handled internally by the development team or leadership team. This can cause the team to miss bugs or errors by not following the proper exercises.

Time-to-Market: Time-to-market is a critical factor in the success of mobile apps. Working with a mobile app design and development studio can significantly reduce the time it takes to bring your app to market. This is because studios have the resources and expertise to design, develop, and launch an app in a fraction of the time it would take an in-house team.

Advantages of Building an In-House Team Vs Agency

Building an in-house team does come with its benefits, and when done correctly, can pay off in the long term:

Customisation: An in-house team can work closely with your organisation to understand your specific needs and goals. This can result in a more customised solution that better meets your unique requirements.

Control and Ownership: Building an in-house team gives you more control and ownership over the design and development process, which can be important for some organisations. 

At Fortnight, you have the final say on any decision, but we like to be proactive and lead with our expertise. It’s easy to want an app for you, but ultimately the success depends on how well it is received by the user.

Long-term Investment: Hiring an in-house team can be seen as a long-term investment in your organisation’s technology capabilities. This can help you build a competitive advantage over the long-term.

Consistency: An in-house team can provide a more consistent level of service and quality compared to a mobile app design and development studio, which may have multiple clients and projects to manage.

Proprietary Knowledge: Having an in-house team can help you build and retain proprietary knowledge about your technology and processes, which can be a valuable asset for your organisation.

Agency Vs In-House - Who's Your Champ?

So, agency vs in-house…what works for you? Both working with a mobile app design and development studio and building an in-house team have their advantages and disadvantages. Choosing between the two will depend on the specific needs and goals of your organisation. While a mobile app design and development studio offers cost-effectiveness, flexibility, and access to expertise, an in-house team provides customization, control, and ownership. Ultimately, the decision will come down to factors such as budget, time-to-market, and long-term investment. It's important to carefully evaluate the pros and cons of both options and choose the one that best aligns with your organisation's goals and objectives.

Work out how much your app project might cost using our Quote Calculator, before contacting us so you can drill down the details with one of our experts.

Agency vs In-House: Getting More for Less with a Mobile App Team