Outsourcing Software Development – 5 Mistakes Businesses Should Avoid
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Whether offshore or onshore, outsourcing has become very common among businesses of all types. Outsourcing is beneficial for small businesses and they know this as well. Over 37% of this sector accounts for choosing to distribute tasks to other companies to loosen schedules. The major advantage here is how businesses can control capital costs and increase work efficiency at the same time. A small business in web development can reduce labour costs and start new projects just through outsourcing software development, for example.
However, despite so many advantages, this form of business can also lead to losses if proper care is not given. This is especially common in outsourcing software development works where time management and quality of work, both, are really important. This is why software development vendors must be chosen through critical analyses.
To avoid the rise of web development failures, additional costs and time losses, we have a few techniques that can help businesses choose the perfect fit for their software development needs.
#1 Lack of Research In Outsourcing Software Development
Solution: Outsourcing software development needs complete research
Lack of thorough research is usually the major factor behind several other business decisions, even in other sectors. This is not different in the field of IT and software development. Outsourcing software development companies might have a well-built profile on display, and these are available for anyone to see as well. However, good research comes after asking several questions from the potential outsourcing partners and yourself. Think about the portfolio of the company, be specific about the projects that match your business plan.
Explore their expertise, feedback and reviews. The latter two are essential for choosing the right outsourcing software development company. These reviews come from real-life clients and represent real projects. They tell you the kind of service you will receive by the way they talk about the company. Even if they have given five stars to the software developers, the tone of their response will say a lot about the service they got in actual.
Ask Necessary Questions
While you’re in the process of selecting the right outsourcing software development company, ask the following questions:
- How will you communicate with the team?
- Who will be the project manager or the scrum master in your project?
- What is the team’s portfolio?
- Who will be working on your project?
- Is the outsourcing software development team going to be solely assigned to you?
#2 Not Knowing What Is Required
Solution: Do your homework!
It often happens that whenever a business is trying to go for outsourcing a business function, they are doing so because they lack a complete understanding. Businesses, especially the smaller ones, should understand the full requirements and the nature of the project before handing it out to the outsourcing software development companies. Consider this example:
A potential client comes with a proposal for a project. Looking at your business and its resources, you can certainly complete most of this project. However, the final tasks seem to have set you at unease since they are relatively new to you. But that’s okay. Right? An outsourcing software development company has been working with you for a long time and they can handle it hence, you call them up. But, how are you going to explain to them your requirements?
Before you decide to hand over tasks to another company/party, make sure that you have a full understanding of the project as well. You can begin by asking yourself the following questions as an example to list down what is clear to you and what is not:
- Do you fully understand the project goal?
- Do you understand what the workflow is going to look like?
- Is the product needed for all platforms or just a single one?
- Can you fulfil the content requirements for this project?
- Do you have the resources to design an incredible front-end as requested?
The questions that do not check out are the ones that you need to address, either through outsourcing the software development works or in other ways.
#3 Outsourcing Software Development And Outdated Tools
Solution: Discuss technical requirements and ensure modern tools and methods.
When it comes to outsourcing software development, these companies should have the skills and work mentality that matches the modern designs of the industry. While this issue may seem trivial in the first glance, it can surely cause some managerial trouble. An outsourcing company can surely have the right intellectual skills to complete a job, but what if its broadband connection cannot match your minimum requirements? This is just one example of what can happen.
It is important to note that the outsourcing company is not always at fault here. Sometimes they are restricted by their region’s economic conditions. Sometimes they are using workflows and interfaces which they consider to be ‘modern’. This can result in compliance risk, cultural difference and even a mismatch of legal terms.
The best solution here is to communicate these concerns to your outsourcing software development team in a way that they make sure that your product construction happens exactly as you require. A development company might have the intellect to work with you, but it should also be using tools and techniques that are trending and give you benefits.
#4 Lacking Expertise In Your Own House!
Solution: Set your house in order before you begin.
We will, yet again, emphasize how important it is that you understand the project completely before you set out to look for an outsourcing software development company. Surely, the outsourcing team that you will hire will be an expert in the subject matter. However, this does not mean that your responsibility to the task is over. To understand the details of the outsourcing task, you must have the technical skills to make this work as well. This way, you can regularly monitor the team and the technical knowledge at your end will make sure that the project is running according to plan.
It is important to understand that the whole point of outsourcing is not to take up clients with requirements that you cannot even understand. Instead, it is to reduce your workload while still be able to serve customers at an affordable rate. This way, one is not required to focus on technological upgrades. They simply enjoy the benefits of delivering projects in the latest technology stack for the clients’ projects.
#5 Underestimating The Quality Testing Process
Solution: Never undermine the role of SQA in outsourcing software development
A lot of companies still practice the flawed concept of inviting software quality assurance teams either in the middle of their outsourcing or at the end. Testing your projects while it’s underway is incredibly essential, for the SQA team, for your client, and the third party. If your testing and bug fixing team is involved in outsourcing software development process right from the beginning then you are not only taking a proactive approach but also ensuring that your software product comes out clean.
It should go without saying that software quality assurance is an integral part of any web development or software development work. The quicker you start looking for bugs, errors and crashes, the quicker you can deliver a high-quality software product.
Conclusion – Outsourcing Software Development Is About Expecting The Unexpected
By addressing the five mistakes that companies are likely to make during outsourcing software development you can see how everything is wrapped around the fact that people are not expecting surprises. This is why communication is so important and creating a perfect bridge between all parties should be an effort by everyone involved. Make sure that all sides have clear expectations and whatever discussions need to happen, have taken place.