Outsourcing development is a useful tool to handle business operations challenges without the long-term commitment required to hire, train and manage an internal development team. The number of companies choosing to outsource software development each year is increasing.

>>DOWNLOAD THE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT CHECKLIST FOR FREE NOW.

With the exponential growth in technology, it seems like most individuals and businesses live and breathe automation – and they expect it. Outsourcing software development is a cost-effective and time-saving way for small to medium businesses to stay competitive and challenge the market.  Automation provides wider accessibility while streamlining processes and digitising tedious manual tasks, thus reducing errors and business risk.  So how are you going to ensure your competitive business advantage for future success?

We’ve created this guide to help you get started making improvements to your business operations processes. Learn how to find the best software development partner for your business to implement and maintain custom software. Automating tasks creates faster workflows, more accuracy, cost saving productivity and increased engagement. Consider outsourcing your software development needs as a convenient way to advance secure operations processes that will launch your business into the future.

 

>>DOWNLOAD THE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT CHECKLIST.

 

WHY OUTSOURCE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT?

1. You’re not an expert.

You should outsource a project anytime you don’t consider yourself or your team to be an expert at something of importance to your business, and/or you don’t have enough time to solve the related problem.

It is more valuable to your business for you to stay focused on core business tasks. Outsourcing software development drives businesses to scale faster, more cost effectively. Outsourcing is not just beneficial for small and medium business, for larger corporations outsourcing to specialists helps avoid internal bureaucracy where approval and review processes can make new things take a lot of time. Save time by focusing your efforts where they’ll make the most positive impact to your business. Leave software development to the experts.

2. Competitive Market.

Creating and delivering to market a unique product that stands out from the rest is a major and ongoing challenge. The market doesn’t respond as well to similar products and copycat impressions lose impact. As such, it wouldn’t be wise to imitate your competitors’ products and expect outstanding success. Usually, it’s better to choose custom development of a product with individually designed features. Your product will also stand out from the crowd and last the test of time by offering specialist features and doing them well rather than focusing on the number of features you deliver. A custom software developer works with you to build a unique product with specialist features that benefit your business productivity, internal and external user experience, customer satisfaction, and your company’s bottom line.

3. Reduce costs and scale.

Outsourcing is like delegating. Learn to let go and find experts either locally or offshore to build the best possible software for you. Think of software development outsourcing as an external tool to grow the technology behind your business.  Engaging experts reduces business risk while efficiency reduces cost.  An experienced software development company can provide the architecture and technology needed to allow scalability and get the most worth from our software investment.

5 things outsourcing software development will solve for your business:

• Reduce fixed costs
• Speed up/scale your development team
• Get skilled developers on-board fast
• Reduce internal bureaucracy to save internal resources and time
• Deliver features to market faster.

 

OUTSOURCING SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT CHECKLIST

A practical checklist to engaging the right custom software development partner.

Finding a good software developer for your business can be difficult, but by engaging the right software development partner you’re not only eliminating the stress and risk taking on a task that is not your business forté but you are also saving your business time and money. So how do you choose the right one?

KNOWING WHAT YOU WANT

Before you begin your search for a suitable software development company:

  • Define a clear vision of your business objectives
  • Prepare an outline of your needs
  • Create an overview of your current technical environment
  • List the problems you are trying to solve.

The pathway to delivery of a superior product begins with an informed and authentic discussion with potential software development partners to find the right fit.

THE RIGHT FIT

Chemistry

Relationship chemistry along with technical knowledge and skills combine to determine if a software development is the right fit for your business needs. It is important to see the developers as partners, as part of your team rather than treating you as a “client”. You will need to work closely and collaboratively for development success that is achieved cost effectively. Ensure you are on the same page by having extensive transparent communication to avoid any pitfalls throughout your development journey. Choose trust and integrity over cost.

Ask yourself:

  • “Can we understand them?”
  • “Do they understand us?”
  • “Do they understand our business and objectives?”

Next, if you’re comfortable you have the right chemistry, is to determine the software development company has the technical knowledge and skills to fit your business environment and guarantee a quality outcome?

Technology Stack

The right software development partner should be experts in the technology in which they work.

Ask:

  • “Do they know things about the language and framework we use?”
  • “What other languages and frameworks do they have experience with?”
  • “What Database knowledge and experience do they have?”

To build a front-end in React, find a company working with React. If you want to have a backend in Node.js, find a company working solely in Node.js on the backend. If you see a software development company’s landing page has a ton of logos of different technologies, don’t choose those guys! You cannot be an expert in 10 languages unless you are a huge enterprise (maybe).

Type of Outsourcing

There are 3 main types of outsourcing:

  • Local: Onshore software development, companies located in the same country or even city as you.
  • Overseas: Offshore software development, companies located abroad.
  • Onshore/Offshore: Hybrid development outsourcing, projects with an onshore management team and offshore development teams.

Each approach has its pros and cons. Onshore development offers high quality, face-to-face meetings and are a good fit for projects that require more frequent communication and fewer iterations. Information will get across much faster since you’ll be communicating during the same business hours. A local software development company will more easily offer good advice that includes location and cultural considerations.

Offshore development is beneficial to companies with clearly defined and documented projects seeking a more cost-effective solution. Although beware – offshore development may start out with projected lower fees but costs can easily blow out due to miscommunication and misaligned expectations, as well as the impact of lower quality development in the longer term.

Consider timezone and culture implications. Look for creative problem-solvers with great language skills. Today great technology is a major contributor of a business’s success. Therefore, look for a partner who can advise you, not only write the code.

EXPERIENCE

At least 5 years proven experience through the successful delivery of projects and client testimonials is a start but you will also want to question the quality of projects. Which companies have they worked with previously, and for how long? Expect full-stack experience including front end, back end, and database development? As well as development can they provide project consulting, systems design, information architecture design, and search engine optimization? Discuss with them source code ownership, code testing procedures and documentation. Ensure you own the source code. A quality custom software development company will not give you bundled code or offer you to license the product if you are paying for ‘software development’, and they should provide transparency and opportunities for review and adaptation throughout the development process.

An experienced software development company will be well versed in providing end-to-end service. This includes testing and bug fixes that can halve development time, reduce cost and speed up time to market.  Do they have a Test Strategy and Test Plan to ensure the project stays at high quality throughout its duration and includes measurable quality criteria? Is code peer-reviewed by team members before code commit to ensure high quality and knowledge sharing? Is there review and feedback of work at the end of each sprint with customer representatives to ensure features are fit for purpose and potential issues are rapidly resolved?

Ask:

  • Who have they worked for and can they provide client testimonials?
  • Do they have long-term (repeat) clients?
  • Are they full-stack developers?
  • Do they have a Test Strategy/Plan?
  • Does their development process include review and feedback throughout, both internally and externally?
  • Will you own the code?

COMMITMENT AND FOCUS

Expect consistent open and transparent communication from a trustworthy software development partner. The development team should be eager to show you their progress at the end of each sprint by presenting a demo of the product. Demos open the opportunity to identify any concerns and adapt before any major problems arise, or refocus priorities to speed up the development. This process motivates the developers and engages you, as a client, to be equally motivated to deliver information or specifications needed for the following sprint.

Maintain a regular review process ensures everyone is on the same page with clear expectations that keep the project moving forward.  With focus from both sides of the partnership, everyone will feel rewarded and accomplished at each successful milestone. Your development partner should understand your business objectives from the outset so they can challenge any new feature requests presented with an educated opinion, help you focus on priorities, and advise you from a technical perspective.

Ask:

  • Do they practice agile software development where iterative sprints are reviewed and discussed?
  • Do they present a demo of the product at the end of each sprint?
  • What review and feedback and tracking tools and channels do they use?

COLLABORATION

The development phase is where workflows, functionality and frontend design is translated into actual code. This phase involves lots of testing and optimizing along the way. Front-end and back-end developers, as well as the UI/UX designers, do a lot of back-and-forth communication during this stage, so an established communication workflow is important.

Documentation of project milestones is crucial as a way to determine how your internal team and the external development team will integrate and measure progress towards final delivery. Development will be faster and more cost-effective from day one if they can clearly articulate what they expect from you and what you expect of them. Select a development company that is accessible and available for communication on a daily basis, if needed.

SUPPORT

Beyond the initial build and delivery, you’ll want developers who can service you with ongoing support and maintenance. Monitoring and maintenance is required to keep your digital ecosystem secure and up-to-date. Monitoring ensures processes are functional, and any issues are alerted to minimise risk to your business. In addition, you may require technical advice, want to improve, or further optimize your product. It will be a whole lot more convenient if you can continue the existing development relationship with the same trusted supplier who already understands you and your business.

THE COST OF OUTSOURCING SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT

In your final negotiations with a potential software development partner, get a clear pricing structure for either fixed price or phased approach for time, materials and deliverables. A phased approached usually wins over a Fixed Price model as it provides more flexibility. Seek cost-effectiveness with the end-to-end development process in mind, not the cheapest option and exclude the yes-men. Find experts of a certain technology/framework, avoid “all-knowing experts in everything”,

>>DOWNLOAD THE CHECKLIST NOW.

 

At ECJ Technology, we believe in minimizing our customers’ pain points while delivering robust, secure software solutions that stand the test of time.

Our team takes the time to discuss your business and it’s unique requirements prior to engagement to ensure we are the right fit, and to determine the best path forward for your guaranteed success. With our extensive knowledge and experience we can guide you to a software development solution, whether that next step be with ECJ or on our advice, through another avenue.

If you’d like to learn more about ECJ, our custom software development services and how we help small and midsize businesses, contact us or SCHEDULE A FREE CONSULTATION today. Automate to accelerate. Let’s start your business operations automation journey!

 

You may also be interested in...

The benefits of flexible and remote working