Nowadays, customers expect companies to deliver top-quality results within aggressively short timeframes. Naturally, this puts immense pressure on any business, especially a startup.
Startup resources are often limited, yet they are under even more pressure to innovate and deliver than an established business. Startup founders often need to build a team before they can begin development. Even worse, they might have a core team who lacks the skills and experience to create a product, so they’re forced to hire additional employees.
All this takes time and is very stressful, which makes outsourcing software development an appealing alternative. Outsourcing companies like Emphasoft allow you to start MVP software development within a couple of days without the hassle of finding, hiring, onboarding, and managing the best specialists on the market.
- 1 Software Development Outsourcing Mistakes To Avoid
- 2 Final thoughts
Software Development Outsourcing Mistakes To Avoid
Any software startup that decides to outsource software development should familiarise itself with the most common mistakes made in the process.
When starting a software company, any mistake is an added risk founders can do without.
Mistake #1: not having a detailed plan
One of the main factors that determine the success of your partnership with the outsourced team is your level of understanding of the goals and scope of the project.
The outsourcing agency will provide you with some guidance and they’ll do their best to identify key goals and deliverables, but there is only so much they can do. It’s up to you to provide them with details.
What kind of an application are you looking to build? Who is the primary audience? What are the must-have features and why? What’s your budget and timeframes?
All those questions need to be answered before you engage with an outsourced partner. Otherwise, you risk ending up with a solution you’re not happy with and that clients don’t need.
Mistake #2: going with the first partner you find on Google
We don’t suggest you spend months in negotiations looking for the perfect partner, but definitely take your time researching and talking to several outsourcing agencies before you sign a contract with one of them.
Here is a quick checklist for you:
- Look for reviews online and feedback from people you know. Remember that people tend to share negative reviews more often than positive ones, but if you only see bad comments, it’s a sign that something isn’t right.
- Always schedule a call or a meeting to get a feeling of what your future cooperation will look like. Pay attention to communication style, the values they share, and the work ethic. Also, come prepared and have a list of questions to ask, so you don’t spend the entire call discussing insignificant details.
- Look at their services portfolio and past projects. See if they can do more than you require at the moment so you have the option to partner with them later for additional services. It’s best to find a trusted outsourcing company and stick to them.
- Ask about the company’s development process and models. A reliable company will have no issues sharing the key steps in the development and main project phases. This will give you a good idea of what the process will look like once you start working together.
Mistake #3: going for the lowest cost possible
We get it, the economic situation right now is brutal. So of course, choosing a cheaper alternative may seem like a smart decision.
However, the low cost is low for a reason nine times out of ten. Either you’ll get inexperienced developers who aren’t that familiar with the technology your product is built on, or the development process will take far longer than initially agreed upon.
Often, you get what you pay for. So, when looking through quotes, try considering the total cost of ownership (TCO). For example, you might pay less per hour to the agency that is based in a different time zone, but timelines for planning, change orders, and approvals may be stretched due to asynchronous communication.
Another aspect to factor in is the cost of re-doing the solution and fixing mistakes and bugs that the cheaper agency didn’t identify or remedy. We can’t afford to lose time, especially when building software for startups.
Mistake #4: underestimating the importance of compatibility
A business partnership is not so different from a romantic one. It is also heavily influenced by the relationship you develop, and miscommunication or ambiguity can be detrimental.
Make an effort to be transparent with your communication, share all information in detail, and raise any concerns you have once they occur. You have to be on the same page in order to create top-notch applications together.
Mistake #5: unrealistic expectations
While an outsourcing agency has the resources and the expertise to deliver projects in the shortest time span and with great results, they are not magicians.
Extremely short timeframes and low budgets create additional risks because the development team has to work under constant stress and pressure. Such an environment is a breeding ground for mistakes and errors that can delay the project or even cause it to fail.
So, as you are negotiating the timelines and other project particulars, consider the other party’s opinion. If they are raising concerns, they are not doing it because they’re lazy or not professional enough, but because they’ve been there before and know a risk when they see one.
We hope that this article was useful and helped you learn something new about outsourcing software development. The mistakes we talked about today are common but they can easily be avoided if you partner with a trusted software development company.
Ultimately, there is no single way to outsource software development, and each company needs to decide what’s the best route for themselves. Sometimes, you don’t have a choice but to go with the cheapest option possible, and sometimes it works out for the best.
Just like with any partnership, signing with an outsourcing company has a higher success rate if you do your homework and understand what you are getting yourself into. However, unforeseen circumstances happen, so it’s best to adopt the mindset that you treat all experiences as a learning opportunity.