There are several advantages to outsourcing software development. You will be able to select professionals for the job who are highly qualified. Additionally, you can also outsource offshore which means that your costs can drop significantly. Perhaps the best thing is that you are able to focus on those things that you consider your core competencies. It is unfortunate though, that there are common mistakes made during the outsourcing process, which lead to failures, loss of time, and additional costs. Here are some of the main ones.
- Having a poor selection process. This happens when a company doesn’t consider everything about the applicant. Most times people only look at the cost and pick the cheapest offer. As much as everyone wants to save a buck, it is critical that Software Development Company be able to do a great job. This means that you have to do your research taking into consideration non-cost and cost factors. Consider the company’s website, portfolio, social media platforms, blog posts and their references too. Ask about relevant experience because what you really want to know is if they can do what you need them to do.
- Not being clear on deliverables. Failure is easily caused by misunderstandings and these arise because the deliverables were not clear. Make sure that from the very beginning you have clear requirements, and let the team know what you are expecting in the end. You need to have a clear vision and then put together a plan on how to achieve that plan together with your outsourcing partner. Questions from you or the outsourcing company must be answered satisfactorily as well.
- Communication problems. Not only is it important to lay out your requirements clearly, there should be collaboration between both parties at all times. This allows you to know if things are progressing smoothly and if the project will be completed in a timely fashion. In order to gauge how good the outsourcing company’s communication is be sure to keep an eye on how fast they respond to your queries. In addition, find out which channels of communication they choose. It is best if they prefer more than one communication method since they are so many; email, video calls, messengers, and the phone. Not hearing from each other for a long period of time can lead to results that are less than ideal.
- Cultural differences. A lot of IT work is being outsourced abroad, but it is important that you outsource to a country that has a great command of English. A custom software development company in a country that does not speak your language will mean miscommunication simply because some things are lost in translation. People in English speaking nations are easy to relate to and you can be sure that they will understand your requirements and execute them with ease.
- Outdated ideas. It is important that you work with an outsourcing company that has kept up with the trends. Unfortunately some people and the companies they represent get stuck in the past instead of learning and growing. Not only should the company keep up with trends, it should also be innovative enough to find new solutions when needed. Usually modern technology is designed to resolve other issues that have arisen in the past so they need to be able to us it.
- Not having a technician on your side. Whenever carry out software development outsourcing it is important to have a technician on your end who has the same knowledge as the developers. Not having such a person on your end means that even when things go wrong, you may not be able to tell and only discover much later which will call for more money. With a tech-savvy person on your side, he or she can overlook the process. Not only will he be able to ensure that you get high quality work, he will be able to ensure that everything is clear between you and the outsourcing company and that the documentation is written out clearly before signing.
- Inadequate timelines. It is important that you have the project timeline set up before you begin the project. This means that you put in places proper timelines so that you know when the project deliverables are new. Without this you have nothing to hold the outsourcing company to if they do not meet your expectations. It is therefore important to discuss, decide on what works and settle in agreement to timeframes that work best for all. It is always important to understand that sometime things don’t go according to plan, be flexible with timelines when need arises.
- You don’t protect yourself. Custom software development will cost you quite a bit. It would be unfortunate to start off with a service provider only to realize halfway through the project that it isn’t working. Some service providers disappear halfway through the project, while others get another job and shelve your project temporarily. You must make sure to set up the agreement in such a way that you can easily and quickly move your project over to a different team. Signing an NDA is also a very good idea, regardless of whether you will be outsourcing to a local company or an international one. It is important to ensure that the contract protects you in case of any such eventualities. Additionally, make sure you know where your source code is located, and have access to whichever systems your code is running on, among other things. It is also a good idea to keep the money in escrow and release it in phases or when the job is fully done to your satisfaction. At other times you may not lose money but you may lose time, and that can be just as bad as losing money.
- No team spirit. It is important that you and the team you outsource to have team spirit. You need to be able to work together and connect well. This is why it is very important to find a person or a team that understands your corporate culture and is able to fit in as part of the team. By working together closely and having camaraderie, you will end up with better results.