Finding the right offshoring partner
As an organisation looking to use offshore software development companies, the emphasis needs to be on ensuring that there is some cost benefit without sacrificing quality. Some of the major factors in determining quality, centre around competency, track record and communication.
- The developers from the offshore organisation should be carefully vetted. It is worth interviewing a selection of developers and managers in person to obtain an understanding of the levels of competency of the developers
- The offshore company should be able to provide standards and technology guidelines, and must be willing to explain the methodology it uses and how it would adapt it for offshore projects, if necessary.
- Expertise in multiple software technologies is also important. Often if the company is very specialised in one technology set, it becomes difficult to diversify and use new or different technologies, which may be better suited to the task.
- The company’s track record, credentials and references should also be scrutinised in order to understand the level of competency within the organisation.
- Look for a company that is big enough to do the job yet small enough to offer agility and to make the client important enough to receive prompt attention when it is needed.
- Your company’s satisfaction should be a priority. A company that specialises in software development services (and not only offers software development as a small part of multiple other services) is also advisable. Many of these organisations do fall into the SME space, so SMEs are definitely a great option with this in mind.
- Speak to as many people from the company as possible to gauge how the communication would work. This will help to determine up front how communication between the two parties will function.
- The technologies that are used to work remotely (whether they are an organisation’s own employees or outsource partners) are more mature than ever. These technologies include communication mechanisms, such as Google Hangouts, Slack and Skype as well as those used in software development – distributed source control and project management tools are also increasingly cloud-based or online.
In terms of business trends that lead to outsourcing, there are movements towards more specialised business. Many businesses are focusing on their core and outsourcing non-core or specialist areas. Relying on external expertise and focusing on real value-adding relationships with suppliers, vendors and partners is becoming more commonplace.
Outsourcing gives organisations a way to accomplish scale and flexibility in resourcing and costs. And of course, better software is becoming a requirement for most business nowadays so using highly qualified and specialist software development companies to assist in this delivery makes good sense.