3 Strategies You Need to Win at Outsourcing Software Development

Your business is in need of a custom software solution to help it continue to grow and drive that bottom line. The only problem is that there are a few things getting in the way of you getting your hands on the software you need.

Whether those limitations include a restrictive budget or an IT team that can’t entirely meet your needs, outsourcing software development has become your only option for getting what you need. But outsourcing can be risky, so what can you do?

When offshore software development is your only option, you’ll need to find a way to make it work. So, rather than hiring an offshore team and crossing your fingers in hopes that things will magically go well, consider using these three strategies to ensure that your software project is a success.

1. Identify what you need to outsource and why.

Desk with Laptop and Other Planning Materials

Since you’re here, you’ve probably already thought about what you need to outsource. If nothing else, you know that you need affordable software development services, but once you have that available to you, what are your project goals and objectives?

Two of the main reasons projects fail are “a lack of direction and unclear goals” (Kintone). By more clearly defining your goals and objectives for outsourcing, you’ll be better prepared to find the right team for the job and a higher chance of achieving success.

To help you sharpen your goals and objects, consider these questions:

  • What type of software do you need to outsource?

    • Are you building a website, mobile app, ecommerce system, membership/subscription system, etc.?

  • How will this software benefit your organization?

    • Will it supplement marketing efforts, increase efficiency, etc.?

  • Why do we need to outsource this project?

    • Are you looking for a cost-effective option, to supplement existing in-house resources, access a larger pool of talent, etc.?

By exploring these questions on your own or with your team, you’ll set up your project to start on the right foot by gaining a better idea of what you’ll need from your outsourced team.

2. Select the appropriate offshore business model.

Once you’ve recognized the what and why behind your decision to outsource, you’ll need to evaluate the outsourced business models of available to you. While there are a variety of models to choose from, these are the three most common:

  • An offshore team is an entirely international team located overseas (e.g. a U.S. organization may outsource to an offshore team in India). They are almost always the lowest in price, as well as in quality.

Unfortunately, this model has a higher likelihood of resulting in final results that don’t align with your expectations. Moreover, this model also often requires more involvement from you, the client, to ensure the project is carried out correctly and effectively.

  • A nearshore team is an entirely international team that is located on the same continent as your country (e.g. a U.S. organization may outsource to a nearshore team in Canada).

These teams often provide high-quality services but often come at a minimal price difference from your local onshore team. You get what you pay for, however, as these teams won’t require as much involvement from you as an offshore team to deliver results.

  • A blended team is comprised of both offshore and onshore team members (e.g. a U.S. organization may outsource to a US-based team that outsources development to Argentinian developers).

These teams often provide higher quality work than strictly offshore teams and at a median cost between offshore and onshore teams. With this model, you’ll likely communicate with the onshore members, who will pass your requests to the offshore developers, allowing you to outsource in a more effective manner.

Depending on the flexibility of your budget, and the amount of time you can dedicate to managing your team, select the model most appropriate for your business’s needs. The more selective you are, the more likely you will be to receive the final results you were hoping for.

3. Develop an approach for subverting outsourcing issues.

As noted earlier, entirely offshore teams have gained a reputation for producing lower quality results than onshore teams. This is often due factors such as miscommunication due to language barriers and difficulties working across timezones, among others—learn more about How to Avoid 6 Offshore Software Development Risks.

Young Woman Planning a Strategy for Outsourcing Her Software Development

This in mind, depending on the business model you select, you’ll need to spend more (or less time) developing a strategy for subverting these issues. For instance, if you decide to outsource your software project to an entirely offshore team, you may need to develop a plan for how you’ll manage the project, as many offshore teams don’t have strong project management in place.

With nearshore or blended teams, you’ll likely need to spend less time developing a strategy for success. That said, with any team you hire, you’ll want to evaluate their existing process and consider how you may need to contribute in order to ensure that your software vision comes to life.  

Need a Team that Values Strategy?

Finding an outsourcing partner that keeps costs low, but also provides quality software development services, can be a challenge. At ClikGlobal, we’ve recognized this need, which is why we’ve brought together U.S. and offshore software developers to provide you with both quality and affordable software development services.

The start of your project is just a phone call away—connect with us today.