Thinking of outsourcing your software requirements? Afraid of what'll happen if you do?
Programming outsourcing means you bring in a third party do your software development work. You hire a specialist to complete any size project, from web apps to fully developed systems.
But I already have my own software development team.
Outsourcing doesn't compete against your in-house team - it compliments it. When workloads increase, you can farm them out. Think of outsourcing as an extension to your staff that can scale up and down quickly to meet changing business requirements.
Results prove that third-party programming works. Good software engineering outsourcing solutions are highly reliable and provide an additional pool of skilled developers and competitive rates.
This guide highlights the benefits and pitfalls of software outsourcing.
Read on to discover how it could help your business.
What is Programming Outsourcing?
Programming outsourcing is the act of seeking out a third party to augment or enhance your company’s programming efforts. Rather than employing an exclusively in-house development team, outsourcing allows business owners to hand over control of certain tasks to an external service with professional expertise in that area.
If you’re a startup short on technical resources or need to reduce business costs, this could be an excellent choice. Even if you don’t necessarily have budget issues, outsourcing can be a financially efficient route to your consulting needs, simultaneously smoothing out your business operations. It also ensures you don’t get your experienced software developers poached by high-paying companies like Google or Facebook.
Outsourcing also gives you the added benefit of flexibility. By outsourcing programming through a company like SF AppWorks, clients can hire out skilled professionals for various elements of a project–as well as the resources that project will realistically require. The ability to divvy up requirements and coding requests among your team of developers ensures maximized productivity, so that you can focus on what matters most for your brand. Your responsive team is ready to address new challenges, and is dedicated to an excellent product.
When outsourcing your programming, you can outsource functions of programming that are not 100% essential to free up some time and resources to help your in-house team during intense production seasons or time crunches. Consider looking internationally to reduce cost and increase your pool of experienced developers. SF AppWorks will be able to team you up with the ideal candidates for your specific project with ease.
Why Companies Outsource Programming?
Capacity and knowledge sharing are the two biggest challenges tech businesses face.
Outsourcing gives access to a global market with unlimited staff resources. When your in-house team doesn't have the expertise or enough staff, a third party can help.
For example, Buffer is a social media management company. They use remote teams to develop their software. CEO Joel Gascoigne is adamant that outsourcing is an essential investment in his company's future.
Even if you don't run a tech firm, outsourcing is still an excellent option.
Businesses need help with website development, apps, analytics, and reports. Software outsourcing opens a world of developers to fulfill your requirements.
You need to ask yourself one simple question: why is outsourcing good for my business?
Benefits of Programming Outsourcing
There is a range of benefits to outsourcing, including financial savings, quick turnaround, and access to the latest tech.
Here are 10 powerful benefits of software development outsourcing to consider.
1. Money Saving
Although remote development may seem expensive at first, consider the costs of hiring an in-house team.
Salaries are typically 2-3 times higher. Then consider the cost of placing an advert, interviews, shortlisting, training. Then there's computer hardware, an ergonomic chair, and good lighting. Software bundles like Adobe Creative Cloud cost a fortune too.
Employee statutory rights also need to be considered. Sick days, leave - it all adds up.
When you outsource the price is all-inclusive and could save you tens of thousands.
2. Rapid Development
Complete your project ahead of schedule by utilizing a larger talent pool. More developers mean faster release schedules.
Established development cycles exist that your in-house team may not use.
For example, we use the Agile framework. Programming is completed in short sprints so you can work with prototypes within a few weeks. Major issues are caught at the beginning, saving time and money.
Leverage the power of accessing thousands of developers worldwide by outsourcing.
3. Strategic Planning
Does your business have expertise in project planning? If not, use someone who does.
You should be able to outline your requirements then see them develop into milestones. A good strategic planner will engage you throughout the process. Their planning reporting tools will display progress and highlight projected issues.
4. Time Saving
Consider the time needed to build your in-house team. Add to that their training and adjustments to a daily schedule. Don't forget the configuration of their systems and adding their accounts to the network.
Suddenly weeks have gone by and your project is gathering dust.
Outsourcing lead-in time is short. You write the brief, you post your requirements, you receive results within hours.
5. Better Testing
Unit testing is a pain. All scenarios need to be considered and checked. Reporting must be carried out and shared.
Most in-house programming teams cannot cope with all those variables. If only you had access to thousands of proficient testers who could check everything.
With software outsourcing you do!
6. Global Tech Marketplace
Programming combines many forms of development. From web applications to native Android apps and legacy systems, your projects are diverse.
Outsourcing allows you to choose from the sectors you need. Select firms specializing in React or Angular, for instance. Narrow your options to fit your budget to build the perfect development team.
7. Reduce Workload In-House
For some large projects, in-house development is essential. Your clients may demand to see your staff work on their projects. If daily issues arise then your employees can fix them immediately.
But what if another project comes in? Your staff becomes swamped and productivity plummets.
Software outsourcing helps reduce that burden. You can accept work knowing you can cope, which allows you to grow your business.
8. Latest Technologies
Is your new web app built on native code or a hybrid system? Does your in-house team have experience in both?
Outsourcing offers a wide range of the latest tech, so why not utilize it?
9. Focus on Your Core Business
Programming eats a huge chunk of a business day.
Focus on the rest of your business by shifting it out. Outsourcing will free up time to manage your finances, offer better customer support, and follow new leads.
10. Risk Management
Outsourcing can be seen as negative. What if it all goes wrong? Which firm can you trust?
The same applies to an in-house team.
If a staff member doesn't meet expectations you'll need to let them go. But you've already invested money in hiring and training and now you've got to do them again.
If a third party doesn't work out then choose another one. The process can take days, not weeks. A good outsourcing agency will offer you options if you need to swap out a resource on the fly.
How to Outsource Your Programming With SF AppWorks: Step by Step
These steps align well with SF AppWorks, but can also be followed as a general way to outsource your programming department. Keep in mind these steps can be followed for partial and full programming outsourcing intentions.
Simply follow each of these steps to start the outsourcing process:
1. Make your standards clear
Always do your best to develop and discuss an in-depth plan with your programming outsourcing potential partner. This list of standards should include budget, milestones, deadlines, and overall company programming objectives.
If budget, timeline, or another standard isn’t met, look elsewhere. The main point of outsourcing your programming is to save money and work more efficiently. Setting up front goals and communicating them clearly is the key to a fruitful partnership.
2. Post a detailed job description
Along with your list of business standards, make sure to detail the skills required, how you would prefer to pay, the estimated workload, whether it is one project or a longer-term partnership, the desired developer experience level, marketplace visibility, your preferred qualifications, and any other relevant details. Be open and honest with what you want from your outsourcing company.
3. Find the right company cultural fit
You will eventually be choosing an outsourcing company in the United States, North America, in a nearby country, or anywhere else around the world remotely. Factors such as time zones, company culture, and language barriers can impact your relationship in negative or positive ways. Consider the pros and cons of the proposed team before moving forward with an engagement.
4. Visit the outsourcing company’s home bases and offices, if feasible
Spend some time at your outsourcing partner’s offices to see what the work conditions are like, how the management works, and the overall quality of the company itself. Try to meet with the project team you’ll be working with and assess how well they work together, as well as how they will work with you for your outsourcing project.
Try to understand the team's process for tracking the project, and make sure it’s communicated with you on a regular basis. Sometimes such a visit can make or break the partnership, so it is wise to commit to it if you can.
5. Do a brief preliminary review with the team
This is somewhat of an offshoot of number four, but do a brief preliminary review when present with the team. Evaluate the team members’ ability to communicate and their skill levels and how well they demonstrate them. Also, make sure there are no issues with your budgeted pay offer.
6. Investigate your personnel statistics
Avoid companies or development teams with constant employee turnover – this could be a very bad sign. Insist on finding a project team that has worked together, consistently, for a reasonable amount of time and have built rapport with one another.
7. Check references for each of your developers
Don’t settle for hearsay. Speak to your prospective outsourcer’s long-term customers and clients if possible, especially other businesses in your industry or those that have used the same services from the outsourcing company in question. Also ask for references directly from the team members you may be hiring.
8. Make a detailed calendar of deadlines and timelines
Create miniature deadlines within the project you wish to outsource and make it mandatory for your outsourcing team to give you frequent and scheduled updates, as well as access to communication lines if they need to ask questions directly. Companies that adhere to an agile methodology will have this built into their sprint schedules.
9. Adhere to the law when it comes to outsourcing
Ensure any outsourcing relationship with a company or team meets state and federal regulations, privacy laws, and industry-specific rules such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which provides data privacy as well as security provisions for keeping medical information safe.
Keep in mind how your business's taxes, deductions, and fees may change once you outsource to another company as well. Keep a paper trail organized so that come tax season, you aren’t totally in the dark.
10. Assess the business expertise of your outsourcing company
Seek an outsourcing brand partner that understands your company itself, not just the technology you wish to outsource. An outsourcing business that understands the company case for the software, coding, hardware, and how it will be used on a daily basis for the project is in a much better position to create a superior product or application with ease. Essentially, make sure your team is on the same page as you, as well as the outsourcing company themselves.
11. Be open to further help
Acknowledge other sources, additional help, or expertise from the original outsourcing company. Consider finding a programming outsourcing company that can provide additional valuable services such as business advice and expertise, financial consulting, marketing and advertising expertise, as well as the necessary traditional IT outsourcing guidelines and service.
Not only do these added relationship features reduce the number of vendors you’ll end up dealing with in the long term (which means less additional partners to worry about bureaucratically), but it can also create a long-term partner that has an extensive and accurate understanding of your company and a significant stake in your overall success.
12. Focus on benefits that aren’t just financial savings
Take the time to understand how a programming outsourcing company might impact your return on investment (ROI) by getting your project or product to market with more haste, improving your customer service needs and goals, or other valuable factors.
It’s worth noting that not all outsourcing efforts are identical, and some of these steps may vary.
Outsourcing Pain Points and How to Avoid Them
Outsourcing may seem daunting but it doesn't need to be. Here are some worries you may be experiencing and tips to avoid them.
- Language barrier - ask to speak to your main support contact via video conferencing.
- Cultural differences - choose a team that has similar cultural values to your team.
- Delivery deadlines - include delay penalties for overdue work.
- Switching developers - demand a dedicated team and ongoing proof
- Quality assurance - ask for their client list then contact them for feedback.
Programming outsourcing is like any project planning. Make sure you get the foundation right at the beginning to ensure a better chance of success.
Questions to Ask Your Outsourcing Company
Before hiring a third party make a list of questions to ask. For example:
- Can you give examples of your work?
- How much will each part of the development cost?
- Who will be my main contact?
- How do I contact you for support?
- What if I don't like your work?
- How quickly can you begin?
To help, we've developed a project manager's guide when writing your proposal document. This free ebook lists your team's needs and gives useful tips and examples. There's even an RFP template so you aren't starting from scratch.
Why SF AppWorks?
SF AppWorks is a software development and mobile app development company based in San Francisco and with offices in LA and Europe. SF AppWorks provides mobile app development, web development, and multimedia design to companies and startups around the world.
SF AppWorks is a uniquely robust choice for outsourcing your programming efforts for a number of reasons. We can serve as part of your hybrid team, meaning if you only want to partially outsource your programming while keeping a small home base team, we can work with both you and your secondary team. We also provide you with access to people around the globe, effectively opening up a wider pool of high-quality developers to work with.
You can also choose to work with us at SF AppWorks on a project-by-project basis, so there is no need for a long-term commitment if your budget or business choices don’t align with it. We can help you find developers for a number of platforms as well, including web-based apps, Android, iOS, Alexa, Google Home, chatbots, and more.
When it comes down to it, SF AppWorks has demonstrated proficiency in finding production and design-focused development teams committed to delivering your product with qualified efficiency. If you need insight and expertise, we’re worth checking out!
Related: How to Hire a Mobile App Developer
Are You Ready to Take IT Out?
By now the answer to why do companies outsource should be clear!
There are multiple benefits to shift your software development to a third party. Yet you need to make sure to choose the right team.
We offer professional software development outsourcing for your business. Our team will be dedicated to your project and we'll help reduce your costs.
We're based in San Francisco so language is no barrier. Add to your software team by combining them with ours.
Contact us today to discuss your programming outsourcing requirements.