Web Admin Options: In-house or Outsourcing?

A question I frequently receive is whether hiring an in-house web administrator or digital marketer is more effective than outsourcing the task to a third party agency.

Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, and the decision ultimately depends on the unique needs of each business. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the key things to consider when deciding between hiring a full-timer and outsourcing the task to an agency.

1. Cost

One of the most significant factors to consider when deciding between hiring a full-time web administrator/digital marketer and outsourcing the task to an agency is cost. Hiring a full-time employee involves several expenses, including salary, benefits, taxes, and training. A web agency, on the other hand, may provide a more cost-effective solution, since businesses only pay for the services they require.

Here is a simple chart that illustrates the cost difference:

Full timer - fix monthly cost
Agency - billing based on the amount of assigned work
About $3,000 for junior level
$35~$60 per hour with years of experience
20% of the salary
13th month + variable bonus
Varies, about $100 for mobile phone + insurance
Training cost
Varies, $1,200 on average
Nil, we might impart our knowledge instead! 😀
Software and equipment
Varies, about $2,000 for laptop, software subscriptions, and furnitures
Office space
Annual leave / sick leave
14 days or more
Cost per hour
Approx. $28

2. Expertise

Another essential factor to consider is expertise. The hiring of a full-timer can provide businesses with a dedicated employee who can focus exclusively on maintaining and developing their websites. There may, however, be difficulties in finding a candidate with the specific expertise and skills needed for the position.

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Furthermore, a fresh graduate might encounter difficulties in accomplishing certain tasks, as many practical situations and solutions are not typically covered in academia, and completing such tasks may require extended periods of time due to insufficient resources, experience, or knowledge.

In contrast, outsourcing to a web agency provides businesses with the opportunity to hire a team of experienced professionals with a variety of skills, resources and tools. 

3. Flexibility & Responsiveness

Generally, a full-timer is readily available during regular business hours, but may not be available outside of these hours. In the event that a website experiences downtime or other issues, it is crucial to have a prompt response to resolve the issue.

Outsourcing to a web agency can provide businesses with a team of experts who can quickly diagnose and resolve critical issues, even outside of regular business hours. This is particularly important for businesses that rely on their website for sales or customer service. However, keep in mind that the responsiveness of web agencies varies according to the urgency of the tasks and the terms of the contract.

4. Control

Control is another crucial factor to consider. Hiring a full-time web administrator/digital marketer allows businesses to fully control the development and maintenance of their websites and marketing campaigns. However, outsourcing may result in a reduction in control over the design and development of your website, since the agency will have its own processes, procedures, and individual agreements regarding the number of revisions and hours devoted to a particular task.

5. Work Delegation

Leadership, knowledge, and experience played a key role in the delegation of work by business owners. It may not be a good idea to hire a full-time employee if the business owner lacks a clear understanding of the tasks to be completed or if he lacks the soft skills to manage the employee.

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In the absence of clear guidance and direction from the business owner, a full-time employee may not be fully utilized or may not be able to perform the required tasks. On the other hand, a good web agency will take the time to understand the business’s objectives and requirements, as well as the plan for achieving them, and will be able to adapt rapidly to changes in the business’ needs.

6. Workload

When it comes to workload, it’s crucial to understand how much work needs to be delegated to your web administrator on a daily basis. If there isn’t enough work to justify a full-time employee, outsourcing to an agency may be a more efficient use of your resources. This way, you can allocate your budget towards other critical areas of your business.


In summary, deciding whether to hire a full-time web administrator or outsource the task to a web agency depends on several factors, including cost, expertise, flexibility, control, and leadership. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, and the decision ultimately depends on the unique needs of each business. Businesses should carefully consider each option and choose the one that best suits their specific needs and budget.

I hope this post has been helpful in your decision-making process. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

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Written by Matt Li Haoming, Managing Director

Possessing over a decade of experience in web development, Matt is much more than just a strategist – he’s a master of crafting design solutions. Merging data-driven insights with a sharp eye for design, he constructs user experiences that are visually compelling and operationally flawless. With his knowledge of web design, content, and marketing, Matt guarantees an online presence that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is results-oriented.

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