Here are pros and cons of using external development agencies:
1. Get to market faster
2. Have a complete professional team that can develop your product with 100% dedication
3. Leverage their technology expertise to get through your technology dilemmas faster
4. Leverage the entire technology team as partners in the process
5. Use a disciplined approach of user research, UI design, front end and back end design, tech stack selection, development, QA, alpha and beta release
1. Upfront expense - though this can be managed by working with dependable offshore development agencies
2. Sooner of later, you have to go through transition and have your own team take over the project.
The biggest benefit of using dev agencies is that you go to market fast, leverage MVP to evaluate Product <> Market fit without losing much time, and you don't have to manage the work ethic of other co-founder or internal tech team that are getting paid with equity and have other responsibilities that delays your product launch. Also, if you do not know how the entire development process goes > where to start first and what to tackle next > then you will waste a ton of time learning something that has already been figured out to nth degree of precision.
I have a dev agency that helps entrepreneurs launch their MVPs. You can check out Empyres.com and SchedulePal.com as two examples of companies that we have helped launch their products. One of our clients actually started with us, then hired their own engineers, and then fired them all and brought the project back to us for completion.
The truth is, to get your product launched you have to spend money. It is a lucrative idea to have a bunch of engineers work on equity and help you test the entire risk of your product with "their" sweat equity, but the reality of that becomes apparent very soon even if you have excited engineers willing to work for you. Even if you hire your own engineers, find a way to pay them with hard cash beyond just equity to get them to finish off your project. Otherwise, talk to us. We have developed and launched PoCs from anywhere between $10K - $140K depending upon the complexity of the project.
Check us out at hatchplan.io; or email me at Jatinder at Hatchplan.io. If I write my contact information, FD will erase it anyway!!!