What's an MSP and RPO and why your startup should consider them!

April 7, 2022

Startup MSP and RPO

Source: Frame Stock Footage/Shutterstock

A new study released this year pointed out that outsourcing your software development will grow 70% by 2030

The situation today is not the best. In the midst of The Great Resignation, the world is still gathering its efforts and laying down measures to mitigate the after-effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. On top of this, the global economy is suffering new alarming falls due to the war in Ukraine.

Business has become more challenging. And emerging companies, more than ever, need to use creativity to keep hiring and expanding. So we are already seeing some practices keeping up with this tide.

Outsourcing is a one-way ticket

A study published in February 2022 by Commit showed that hiring trends for outsourced software developers are expected to grow by 70% come 2023. The same survey also shows that for 68% of startups it takes more than a month to recruit a developer.

Undoubtedly, the need to find the most cost-effective way to compete with tech giant companies is evident. It's the only route to surviving in a business environment that is as fast and aggressive as the one we face today.

Startup talent hired by MSP and RPOSource: Frame Stock Footage/Shutterstock

That's why you have to focus on innovative forms of hiring and developing talent. And the best way to start is to learn more about managed solutions — Recruitment Process Outsourcing and Managed Service Provision, more commonly referred to as MSP and RPO.

What are RPO and MSP?

RPO and MSP are two models of the recruitment process that a service provider can offer to increase cost savings in the company.

RPO and MSP strategies discussed by tech workersSource: Frame Stock Footage/Shutterstock

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

Recruitment Process Outsourcing is a service performed by a particular company that aims for the complete evaluation of the recruitment process of another company. After the evaluation, a diagnosis is presented in order to reduce costs and make talent acquisition much more planned and optimized.

The type of workforce hired is not restricted to just one condition. Those organizations can help with hiring permanent staff or temporary workers. More capable RPO companies can take over the entire recruitment process to precisely scale it and integrate it naturally into the dynamics of startups.

Managed Service Provision (MSP)

Managed Service Provision is another way of improving a company's recruitment process through the partnership with a workforce solution provider. This time the solution is entirely focused on contingent workers.

When the entire model is reviewed, and new guidelines are implemented, there is also the addition of a Vendor Management System (VMS) to ensure the monitoring of processes.

Why do startups need workforce solution providers?

Leveling the competition against tech giants is just the tip of the iceberg

The Commit report clarifies that outsourcing has been a reality among startups. We've already talked about how cost reduction and gains with agility in hiring can be fundamental in competing against major technology companies. The truth is that we can’t just rely on a matter of competition, it's a scenario of imminent adaptation that we're witnessing.


Big companies today, for instance, were developed with outsourced tech talent. Such as the case for GitHub and WhatsApp. And that's because the demand for a multidisciplinary and diverse talent spread is increasing worldwide. We can verify this by how investments in technology have been shaping up in the last fiscal period.

Web3 & DeFi: the digital space is under construction

In their Q4 report on the emerging tech sector, Pitchbook analysts show how the Web3 & DeFi segment was dominant in the tech industry with USD$4.3 billion invested in 2021. This metaverse niche was the leader in investments in Q3, with USD$1.2 billion dollars, and Q4 at $2.4 billion — this is basically a 100% spike.

The metaverse has been a big bet, and it seems that it will continue to present substantial investments in the coming periods. The digital space is being created and, consequently, remote work has all the qualities it needs to be constant and to have its distance diminished with virtual reality and decentralized finance.

Communication and collaboration technologies are disrupting the workspace

Many emerging technologies are changing the way we work. Our communication and collaboration has been facilitated and expanded by new software and systems that can turn the work environment into a more plural one.

Alone, the Communications and eCollaboration sector had USD$472 billion invested in Q4 2021.


Emerging techs: the time for growth is now!

Startups need to make the best out of the disputed funding they get. These emerging tech companies need to show the best ROI margin possible to attract more and more investments.

Teaming up with a workforce solution partner means alleviating costs and focusing on your core business. And yet there is all the expert help with employment law, global mobility, human resources innovative technology and product delivery optimization already mentioned so far.

At Airswift, a company with years of experience in workforce solutions such as MSP and RPO for the STEM industries, we have been very successful in helping startups grow their businesses and then advance in competition with major tech companies.

One of our projects was to help an oil and gas startup, with assets in the Delaware Basin, fill nearly 50 positions quickly. For that challenge, we provided the following solutions:

  • Talent Acquisition
  • Professional Search
  • Consulting
  • Talent Mapping
  • Global Employment & Mobility

We were successful in delivering the best result with our talent acquisition team. All positions were filled within the allotted time, with 30% of the workforce being filled locally and 70% from across the US.

Oil and Gas Startup Case Study

At the time, the startup was still fairly obscure; but with our partnership, they were able to beat out competition in the West Texas market in the race to find the best qualified candidates.

Find the right workforce solution provider for you

An important thing to check before partnering with an outsourcing company is whether they have proven experience and a cultural fit that matches yours. 

Airswift is your best choice to achieve best practices in MSP and RPO finally. With over 60 offices worldwide and over 7,000 contractors, we can help you reach the next level in staff augmentation and scale your business sustainably. Contact us to learn more about how we can help your business thrive.

Find out more about Airswift's recruitment services

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This post was written by: Raphael Santos, Content Marketing Coordinator