Outsourcing is a widely used practice by individuals, startups and established a business which provides numerous benefits in terms of cost reduction, flexibility to adopt newer technologies, ability to extend the production bandwidth as well as to shorten the delivery timeline. As they say, life is too short to learn everything from your own mistake. It is wise to have learned based on other people’s mistake. To ensure you benefit most out of outsourcing ensure what mistakes others have done and that you learn from it.
Mistake #1: Looking For The Cheapest Option
Many people choose their vendor based on just the pricing which is being provided. As with any other thing in life, you get what you pay for. Outsourcing provides almost 60% -70% of cost-effectiveness as compared to local vendors, nevertheless the wish to save more money might lead you to a vendor who doesn’t follow structured development best practices, have skilled resources or most importantly the necessary know how to ensure you get what you paid for. Always do your due diligence to ensure you choose the right outsourcing partner who provides an optimal balance between the pricing and quality.
Mistake #2: Not Clarifying The Bigger Picture
Technology & software evolve over a period of time. It is a must for businesses to communicate the bigger picture with their development partners to ensure they understand the bigger vision of the software and choose the technology and architecture properly. For example, for a website which might have a traffic of 4000 concurrent users per seconds, for them, WordPress is not a good technology recommendation and mature MVC based frameworks like Yii should be used. One should ensure correct software architecture is in place right from phase 1 of the project.
Mistake #3: Communication
While outsourcing it is very important to ensure you are constantly in touch with the project manager & app development team to ensure things are transparently communicated to you. Precaution is better than cure. The earlier you know about a problem, it gives you more chance to solve it. Tracking project progress, regular code review, work reporting, a detailed project plan, etc are all part of good project management practice.
Mistake #4: Not Ensuring Ownership of Source Code & IP Rights
Doing the right paperwork is very important prior to start any project. Things like the Non-Disclosure Agreement is important to ensure confidentiality of idea and even asset is maintained. Moreover, it is critical to confirm that you have complete ownership of the source code as well as Intellectual property rights.
Mistake #5: Lack of Process & Structure
Keeping things process oriented saves a lot of time and effort, reduces the overall overhead associated with the delegating the work while outsourcing. Most people still use emails to allocate tasks. While emails are a good medium to communicate but they are a poor choice for task-specific communication & management. Using standard project management tools like Basecamp makes the process much more structured. Tools like SVN, Git and many other options are available for version control mechanism which should be used.
Outsourcing can certainly provide immense benefits to your business when implementing with an experienced outsourcing company in the right way. How you choose your outsourcing partner will make an impact on the success of the venture.