As recent stats show, the demand for hiring offshore software developers is on a rise as more and more businesses reap advantage from software outsourcing. But, stats also show that outsourcing fails too! So, in this volatile industry, how do you make sure that you successfully outsource software development? You will find the answer to this question in our article.
Software outsourcing is still very much in trend. But the approach to software outsourcing has changed. Earlier cost savings was the most widespread reason for outsourcing software development. Now, with changing technology and the world becoming so interconnected, access to global talent is slowly emerging as a prime reason for outsourcing software development.
Software development saves cost! I agree, But, without proper due diligence and a lot of initial time investment, software outsourcing can also spell disaster! We in this article aim to provide you with some handy tips that will ensure that your software outsourcing is successful.
Here we cover :
What is Software outsourcing?
Why do companies outsource?
How to successfully outsource software development?
What is Software outsourcing?
Acc. to Statista, In 2018, the global outsourcing market amounted to 85.6 billion U.S. dollars. With the rapid advancement in technology and with the way the economy is racing towards globalization, automation is the primary requirement of enterprises in every industry vertical. But automation with the help of software is not that straight forward.
[a] After you brainstorm and figure out what software will add the competitive edge, you need to go ahead and hire an IT team that can bring your idea to life.
[b] This means putting out job requirements on third-party job search sites, shortlisting candidates, interviewing and hiring.
[c] Then once the development starts, constant management to keep everything on track.
Along with these, huge investment costs on their salaries, expenses, bonuses, IT infrastructure, etc. So, all in one - a huge overhead.
Read more: Outsourcing vs in-house software development
But there is an easy way! Offshoring software development!
Software outsourcing is like task delegation but to a different company (often in a different country) whose production costs, as well as operating costs, are lower than your own company.
In 2018. Deloitte reported that 31% of all IT services were outsourced.
This is because outsourcing is no more constrained. With globalization, the realms of outsourcing are always expanding. Once it was about cost constraints and now it’s about quality.
Why outsource software development?
Software development outsourcing is much more than addressing IT needs in today’s global world. It is more about exposure to talent, faster time to market, driving up profitability, improving market competitiveness and improving customer experience.
Some of the main reasons why companies outsource software development are :
[a] Cost Cutting
[b] Focus on Core Business
[c] Save time
[d] Enhance Service Quality
[e] Access to Intellectual Capital
If you want to know more about why businesses outsource, take a look at the article on our blog.
NOTE - 33% of all software development projects fail. Quite a figure, I know! How to ensure that your software outsourcing attempt doesn’t fall under this 33%. Let’s see!
How to successfully outsource software development?
 Requirement documenting :
Software outsourcing can only be successful if both the client and the software company have a complete idea of the end-to-end flow of the software application.
You are the best judge of your business needs. Carry market research about the application you want to develop. See what all features it requires and jots them down in a document. Keep these in accordance with your business purpose and the goal.
Keeping a tab of all the features on paper will give you clarity. When you talk to potential outsourcing companies, this will help there too as they can easily get an overall picture of the software at one glance. This will make sure that expectations are crystal clear from the very beginning.
Also remember, software development costs money. If you have a written document of all the features and the flow ready, it would be easier for the software outsourcing company to come up with an accurate estimate, both in terms of money and time.
 Due diligence
Once you know what business processes need to be automated to drive revenue for your business, you need to find an offshore software development company that can help you develop the software.
This is the hardest part and requires a lot of your time. But, if you compromise on this process, your outsourcing attempt is bound to fail!
*** Clutch published a list of the best software developers in India for 2019 and Binaryfolks is at #39 in the list among thousands of software development companies in India.
Or speak to your friends and colleagues who hired offshore software developers previously for references. There are ample of global freelancing platforms that you can reach out for hiring top class developers.
Due diligence has a crucial role to play in the success of your software. Once you shortlist 4 or 5 companies, go through their website, their social profiles, their portfolios, testimonials … everything! Carry out detailed research on them and then proceed to contact them.
 Ask for references
While buying a simple product from an online store, we run exhaustive research on what other people are saying about that product. So, why not do the same when you need to develop software.
Ask your potential software companies for past and present client references. Remember this: If someone has completed quality software projects for other companies within scheduled budget and time, chances are they will complete yours too. References also help build trust with the software development team.
References will tell you a lot of things about a company - Their quality of work, how professional they are, how technically adept they are, how their codes are, how good their communication skills are etc.
Also, when you are talking to the references, ask whether the company is proactive or not? This means whether they ask a lot of questions, make suggestions for improvement, brings fresh ideas to the table, etc. This is important because proactiveness is a very essential trait when it comes to developing software.
Your software company must be able to point out if they think there is a break in the flow or if they think some features are unnecessary. You don’t need a company that nods yes to everything! Another tip to avoid outsourcing disaster.
 Set clear expectations and communicate
Again - Your software development company needs to completely understand your business requirements. Don’t tell them that - something like this would be good! Tell them what you want exactly and let them come back to you with questions, if any.
Make sure they document the whole business flow as a Business Requirement Document (BRD) and discuss the flow with you. There should be no ambiguity in the flow. When you both are confident about the flow, only then ask them to start the development.
Keep the estimates real. Understand that software development takes time. Don’t tell them to develop Facebook in 2 weeks.
Read more: How to estimate software development time?
Leverage technology (emails, video calls, slack, trello) to communicate with your offshore software team to set a clear line of communication from the very beginning of the project. You need to keep communicating with the team and be involved in the process from start to end.
Don’t leave testing for the last day. I repeat, Don’t leave testing for the last day. Make testing a priority from the very first day, even if it is manual testing.
Errors or bugs often starts to accumulate during the requirement or design phase and then start showing manifestation eventually. Testing early will help identify these issues and also discover functionalities that might not have crossed your mind earlier.
Also, when bugs are found after the complete development is over or they are found in production, it takes time to solve them and the situation gets complex. So, testing early is better form all spheres.
-:: Parting words::-
Follow these basic tips and see your software outsourcing project sail comfortably. Outsourcing software development surely has a lot of advantages but it has some risks too. Take a look at the risks of software development outsourcing here. That is why keeping in mind these tips while choosing a software vendor is of utmost importance.
Remember: The key to software outsourcing success lies in choosing the right software vendor!