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In-House vs Outsourcing Project Manager: What Is a Better Solution for Your Development Team

Aug 23, 20234 min read
by Murtuza Kutub
In-House vs Outsourcing Project Manager:  What Is a Better Solution for Your Development Team Hero

Project management is the backbone of any successful development team, a statement few would dispute.

But here's a twist: traditional project management methods are failing us, with a staggering 70% of projects crashing into failure.

The culprit?

Perhaps it's the way we hire software project managers.  

Our article aims to delve into this topic, providing a comprehensive comparison between in-house vs outsourcing project managers. We'll explore the project manager's cons, pros, and responsibilities of each, helping you make an informed decision for your dedicated software development team.

Let’s start in-house vs outsourcing project managers comparison by understanding in-house project managers.

Understanding In-house Project Managers

In the realm of project management, in-house project managers play a pivotal role. As full-time employees, they are the main lead of the organization, steering projects toward their successful completion. 

Interestingly, a study reveals that 93% of organizations use standardized project management practices. This shows the importance of in-house project managers in maintaining and implementing these standardized practices within the in-house vs outsourcing project manager debate. 

In-house project manager responsibilities are manifold and critical, encompassing:



Project planning

Setting goals, defining roles, and creating an implementation plan

Team coordination

Ensuring all team members are working together effectively towards the project goals

Timeline management

Creating a realistic timeline and ensuring that the project stays on track.


Estimating the development, service, and maintenance costs and ensuring the project stays within the budget

Risk management

Identifying potential risks and mitigating them effectively

Quality assurance

Ensuring the project deliverables meet the required quality standards

Moreover, some significant in-house project manager pros include:

  • Direct control and supervision: They offer real-time monitoring and immediate feedback, a key factor in the successful execution of projects.
  • Deep understanding of the company's culture and processes: This knowledge enables them to make decisions that align with the company's values and goals, leading to more effective communication and decision-making.
  • Availability and accessibility: Their physical presence within the organization facilitates spontaneous discussions and quick problem-solving and fosters stronger relationships with the team.

Exploring Outsourced Project Managers

These professionals, external hires often from specialized firms, are brought on board to manage specific projects.

Their mode of operation is distinct, characterized by remote coordination. They leverage technology to stay connected with the team, utilizing a range of software tools for task tracking, communication, and documentation. 

As per Go Remotely, more than two-thirds of organizations hire project managers by outsourcing. This data shows how more people outsource project managers in present times due to the unfair advantage they hold against in-house teams.

Here's the gist of outsourced project manager responsibilities and duties, which generally F22 Labs project managers fulfill:



Project Planning

Define project scope and a detailed project plan, and set project goals and objectives.

Team Coordination

Establish clear communication channels, coordinate tasks, and manage remote teams.

Timeline Management

Develop a project schedule, monitor progress against the timeline, and adjust plans as needed.


Estimate project costs, manage project budget and ensure cost-effectiveness.

Risk Management

Identify potential project risks, and risk mitigation strategies, and manage and mitigate risks.

Quality Assurance

Define quality standards, monitor project deliverables to ensure they meet these standards and implement improvements as necessary.

Reporting and Documentation

Prepare project reports, document project progress changes, and communicate project status to stakeholders.

The primary benefits of outsourcing a project manager are manifold in case you avail of F22 Labs services:

  • Access to specialized expertise and experience: Outsourced project managers often bring a wealth of knowledge from various industries and projects. This diversity can infuse your project with unique skills and insights.
  • Cost savings and flexibility: This is the biggest reason the directors outsource project managers. Outsourcing can significantly reduce overhead costs associated with full-time employees. It also offers flexibility, allowing you to scale the project management resources based on project needs.
  • Objective perspective and fresh insights: An external project manager can provide an unbiased perspective, free from internal politics or preconceived notions. This objectivity can lead to innovative solutions and unbiased decision-making.

Comparing Details: In-house vs Outsourcing Project Managers

Navigating the In-House vs Outsourcing Project Manager debate is like walking a tightrope. Each step, and each decision, can significantly impact your development team's success. 

Let's compare practices of hiring in-house vs outsourcing project managers across the five most critical parameters.

1. Cost-effectiveness

Money talks, and in this debate, it's shouting. In-house project managers come with their own price tag - salaries, benefits, and training. Outsourced project managers, on the other hand, can trim down overhead costs and flex with project-specific expenses. 

2. Expertise and industry knowledge

Imagine having a Swiss Army knife of experience and insights at your disposal. That's what outsourced project managers bring to the table. But don't underestimate the power of home-field advantage. In-house project managers, deeply rooted in your company's culture, offer invaluable company-specific knowledge.

3. Resource allocation and scalability

Outsourcing can be like a magic trick, making internal resources appear for other tasks. It also allows for easy scaling based on project needs, providing flexibility in managing your dedicated software development team.

4. Time and efficiency

Time is money, and outsourcing could potentially save you both. But, in-house project managers who understand the company's processes can offer efficiency gains. 

5. Risk management and mitigation

In-house project managers may be more familiar with company-specific risks, while outsourced project managers may have broader risk management experience. The choice between the two would depend on the nature of the risks your projects typically encounter.

Overcoming Challenges and Concerns

Outsourcing takes an edge in In-house vs Outsourcing Project Managers debate. However, it is also not without its challenges. Communication barriers, time zone differences, cultural mismatches, and lack of direct control can be daunting. In fact, 55% of project managers cite budget overrun, often a result of miscommunication, as a reason for project failure.

However, these hurdles can be overcome. Here are some actionable strategies that you can implement on the go:

  • Establish clear communication protocols.
  • Schedule regular updates.
  • Foster cultural understanding.
  • Set detailed project expectations.

In-House vs Outsourcing Project Managers: Bottomline

In the journey of  In-House vs Outsourcing Project Managers comparison, the choice, as we've seen, hinges on your company's specific needs, circumstances, and strategic goals. Consider your project requirements, budget, timeline, and the scale of your operations.

However, the outsourcing project manager takes a slight edge due to some added advantages as compared to in-house.

Want expert assistance?

F22 Labs is here for you!

Author Detail

Author-Murtuza Kutub
Murtuza Kutub

A product development and growth expert, helping founders and startups build and grow their products at lightning speed with a track record of success. Apart from work, I love to network & Travel.


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