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Top Tips to Successfully Outsource Your Software Development

VitaliyKolos Inspiration Oct 29, 2019

From time immemorial, one common denominator among all successful companies is speed. Success loves speed. In the multifaceted connected world of today, companies are finding it increasingly hard to be as fast as their customers demand, especially when it comes to their digital platforms and services.

To counter this, and also focus on their core competencies, businesses have taken to outsourcing most of their software development. Outsourcing isn't the silver bullet to all business problems. However, if you are a company currently struggling with the complex intricacies of digitization, it's a path worth exploring.

Here are a few tips to ensure you get the best out of your outsourced software development team.

1 - Define your outsourcing goals and scope

The first thing you need to do once you decide on hiring an external software development team is to clearly define what you intend to achieve. Detail your goals, scope of work, and what success means for you at the end of the project.

A detailed project scope helps you identify the skills you need, which means you only pay for the expertise you need. It is easy to pay for fluff or capabilities that can be handled internally if you don't define the scope of work and what success should look like. Doing this properly also helps you budget properly.

For example, a proper project scope can help you identify if what you need is outsourced customized software development versus an off-the-shelf product. Mistakes or being too vague in defining your goals and scope could lead to increased costs and delays.

2 - Setup an in-house team to manage the process

Outsourcing usually requires a change in mindset from the organization. This can be jarring if you don't prepare adequately for it. To reduce the shock, put together a crack team to manage the process. You might need to train them and also acquire new tools or technology to support the new work process.

The team needs to ensure that there are proper communication channels with the remote team. They also will need to make sure that every member of the organization who interfaces with the outsourced software development team is properly trained and briefed on the new ways of working and the benefits to the organization.

3 - Set realistic timelines

You might have done a fantastic job of properly scoping your project. However, you also need to properly account for the time it could take your organization to settle into the new process. There should be the initial bedding-in period as your employees get used to their new remote colleagues, and vice-versa.

Design programs that increase the speed of this assimilation. It might also be wise to speak with experts in organizational behavior to help with this process.

The key lesson here is you need to account for all these minute details. Otherwise, they have the potential of not only derailing your project but destroying your company if not properly taken into account.

4 - Always prioritize value over cost

The cost might seem to be a big reason why you are considering outsourcing. However, it shouldn't be the main criteria for hiring. If you make a decision based on the lowest possible cost, it usually comes back to haunt you in the long-term.

Check for domain expertise, customer reviews and any other metric that enables you to make the right decision without spending over the top.

Final Thoughts

Outsourcing, when done right, is a great way to reduce costs, while increasing the speed of your go-to-market strategy for your products. These 4 tips not only help you avoid the outsourcing pitfalls most first-timers experience but also ensure you build a successful road-map.

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