Outsourcing software development is a prevalent practice of the biggest enterprises as well as rising start-ups.
Actually, 94% of Fortune 500 companies outsource work for one of their core products. When used properly, software development outsourcing can bring tons of value to your company. But does it mean that outsourcing should be your way of developing software? Not really. Your business may have very different needs than giants like Apple or Google. To help you make an educated decision about outsourcing, I decided to outline six situations in which outsourcing your software development is not only an option, but the best possible choice.
Whether you’re a start-up founder, a well-rounded small business owner or a decision-making person in the +500 people organization, you can still take advantage of outsourcing to build meaningful software.
#1. You don’t have enough talents available.
The most burning issue that companies encounter nowadays is the struggle with recruitment. Companies worldwide are fighting for specialists in any area but in IT is extremely hard. 33.5% of IT managers find it an issue they have to deal with. If you’ve ever recruited someone to the IT sector, you feel that pain.
Finding the right people, with the right skills, available at the right time and with a given salary range sounds like a challenge. If you turn to a software house, you have almost any technology and skills level at your disposal. Besides, you’ll be able to scale your team up and down according to the current situation of your business and scope without the long-term commitment of hiring talent internally.
#2. You want to start immediately.
Some projects can wait, others not really. If you’re planning to release your app on a specific date when time-to-market is important, outsourcing this to an external business partner is a good idea. When hiring in-house it would take weeks, if not months to build a team. Can you afford to wait so long to kick off your project?
A possibility to reach an experienced team available almost at any time, is pure gold for anyone who doesn’t want to wait weeks or months before programmers get on well and work smoothly. Good software agencies know how to set up your team to start working on your project since the first line of code.
#3. You don’t have a technical background or domain expertise.
Would you feel secure about your building your product if you’re not able to decide about your the best tech stack yourself? Neither would I. Software development is a complicated area requiring domain expertise, proven practices and specific knowledge. If you’re not an experienced programmer (or programmer at all), trying to manage, e.g mobile app development might become a hurdle. And even if you already have some devs on board, they may not have the necessary skillset, mindset, or experience to design and develop the project.
When cooperating with company already working your niche or technology and with some decent record track, e.g in Vue.js development, it takes away all worries. They will act as your CTO and will not only know their area but can also get advice from their colleagues and consult ideas with more experienced team members. So you actually get the whole company’s expertise as they bring best practices from their projects with them.
#4. You want to be cost efficient.
It shouldn’t come out as a surprise that many business owners decide to outsource because of financial reasons. Although every project needs to be estimated individually, the overall costs of software development is much more reasonable in terms of prices than building in-house when you have to deal with social benefits, payroll taxes, administrative costs, and additional office space.
Of course, it all depends on the place you outsource to. To give you an example, Ukrainian developers charge £19/h, while Poland represents middle-shelf pricing, with average rates around £38/h. While the rates in Prague and Zurich, or New York are around £108/h.
Remember that the budget alone shouldn’t be your only reason for outsourcing, especially if you have no prior experience with consulting agencies. Look for social proof, portfolio and track record. You should always ask your network and check directories like Clutch.
#5. You want more than just the code.
It goes without saying that your software development company should not only have development and design skills, but also an understanding of the business perspective. When outsourcing this product to your business partner, you’ll receive a well-rounded team including a Business Analyst. Together with the team, they will be able to conduct Discovery workshops to unravel the truth about your business and its needs.
When hiring 3 devs for your in-house team, you will most likely receive high quality code but will it be written with business in mind? It’s not that easy and even senior dev struggle with it from time to time. You would have to hire a Project Manager or a Scrum Master to complement your team which increases costs and takes a lot of effort. While in the established organisation, there are all kinds of experts and established processes and workflows too, which is not the case for a newly stood-up internal team.
#6. You divide your time between managing and developing
In almost every technology start-up, owners with development background try to do-it-yourself for a while. But with the product growth, it’s definitely not a long-term option. If you noticed that you spend more time tracking time in Jira than shaping your business vision, it might be a sign to steer towards outsourcing and leave coding to programmers. As a founder or the main decision making person, you should leave time for finding product/market fit for your MVP, creating the business strategy and goals, planning distribution, pricing and other issues crucial for business prosperity.
Do you see yourself in any of these situations? Consider outsourcing and build your product with development experts. To find a reliable outsourcing software agency, verify your future vendor closely. Ask a lot of questions, meet them in person, and outline your expectations. I wish you the best of luck with the process.