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What Is Software Development Outsourcing: The Definitive Guide

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Mario Olomu

August 05, 2022

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Software development outsourcing is a widely known concept in the technology world.

Technology is advancing rapidly, and companies are becoming more competitive than ever; software outsourcing has become one of the most discussed business strategies.

Software engineers are in high demand all over the world. The increasing demand for software engineers directly results from the speed with which technology is progressing. Additionally, digital transformation is a crucial factor in the rise of outsourcing development.

 

Regardless of the size of your business, software development outsourcing is a viable option. Whether you're a startup or a multinational organisation, there are numerous advantages to outsourcing this phase of your company's operations.

Software development outsourcing has experienced tremendous growth during the past two decades.

Statistics show that approximately 64 per cent of organisations outsource their whole development processes.

Outsourcing software development has several benefits, including cost savings, improved product quality, and more.

 

In this article, we will explain in detail what software development outsourcing entails and why it is an ideal approach for your organisation in terms of time, money, quality, and competition.

 

Here’s a glance at what we have covered in this guide:

  • What Is Software Development Outsourcing?

  • Why Should You Outsource Software Development?

  • How Do You Outsource Software Development?

  • Models For Software Outsourcing

  • Benefits Of Software Outsourcing

  • How Is Software Development Done: The Process

  • How To Choose


WHAT IS SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT OUTSOURCING?  

 Software Development Outsourcing is a term that describes an arrangement in which a business hires an external software development agency to carry out all the work that might have been performed in-house.

Software outsourcing refers to a firm handing over control of the business process or project to a third-party vendor competent in doing the necessary business duties.

A company outsources software development projects to a third-party service provider in software development outsourcing. The development services might range from creating unique software for your organization to creating commercial software for your clients.

 

When outsourcing software development services, your internal development team can concentrate on core capabilities such as growth and innovation.

 

WHY SHOULD YOU OUTSOURCE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT?  

 

Many businesses outsource IT projects to satisfy their software development needs due to a lack of in-house programmers.

Also, companies can access a previously unavailable reservoir of human and material resources by outsourcing.

To streamline operations and save costs, many modern businesses rely on outsourcing decisions by IT managers and CEOs. However, companies can better focus on their core capabilities and long-term strategic priorities if they delegate tasks to other departments.

There are significant financial benefits to outsourcing, particularly in the case of software development; outsourcing to countries with a lower standard of living can ultimately result in a more competitive market and reduced prices for consumers.

 

These are the reasons why outsourcing must be integral to any digital transformation plan:

 

Global access to elite technological talent

 You are not hindered by your location when you opt to outsource your product/project development. Your primary criterion can be the team's proficiency and professionalism, not proximity to your workplace.

 

You can choose the ideal team for your project by perusing the company's portfolio, searching for customer feedback, examining the company's reviews, and utilizing the company's provided items.

 

Regardless of their location or whether they collaborate in-person or remotely, this vast pool of development expertise will maximize the creation of your product.

 

When considering working with an international or geographically dispersed team, it is essential to understand cultural differences and take steps to minimize their impact on the project development process.

 

The ideal ratio of abilities to pay

Outsourcing allows you to find the sweet spot between the quality of the development team and the cost.

Eastern European nations like Ukraine and Belarus are making rapid strides in the outsourcing ranks. Businesses in these regions specialising in software development have repeatedly proven that they can deliver excellent work thanks to a potent combination of technical know-how and imaginative problem-solving.

 

Save time while hiring professionals.

By bringing in pre-approved professionals, you may reduce costs even more in light of the adage "time equals money." The hiring and research processes have already been completed with outsourced development teams. You may now swoop in and take advantage of all the successes with minimal effort.

Employing a software outsourcing team can take the same time or less than hiring a single in-house engineer. Consider the amount of time and money that this could save you.

 

Access to extensive information and wisdom

It's common knowledge that hiring a third-party firm to handle your software engineering needs is an excellent method to compensate for lack of in-house talent or equipment. The aforementioned is, however, simply the beginning.

 

All that would be on your part is to develop a product idea, and you'll have instant access to a suite of consulting, analytical, marketing, design, and development services.

 

You may either jump into development or construct a minimal viable product (MVP) to test the waters and make any necessary adjustments before diving in deeper. The outsourcing firm's marketing and design professionals will aid you in creating a cutting-edge minimum viable product (MVP) and deciphering the insights gleaned from its analysis.

 

Outsourcing businesses can assist with everything from project planning and cost assessment to wireframing, software development, user interface and user experience design. And they do all of this constantly. Therefore, they can create the best possible project plan for any endeavour.

 

Enhanced Concentration on Core Business Processes

Outsourcing also benefits your staff and development team. By outsourcing time-intensive projects, you can lessen the workload of your internal tech team. In addition, as these outsourced teams require no additional supervision, your staff can focus on tasks that directly contribute to the firm's expansion.

 

In addition, rather than requiring your in-house development staff to manage projects for which they are unqualified, consider outsourcing the work!

 

Thus, your full-time staff can focus on strategic objectives according to their level of expertise, while the outsourced team concentrates on these specialised software solutions.

 

Boosts Product Quality

Utilizing a third-party software development company can frequently enhance the quality of the final product.

Your outsourced team might have dedicated testing and quality assurance resources to verify that the final software product is stable and provides a positive user experience.

 

In addition, your outsourced team may have novel suggestions for enhancing your software solution might contribute to more innovation. They may even propose novel strategies for resolving existing company issues.

 

Micromanagement is unnecessary.

When you delegate a project to an outsourcing firm, it is managed by a project manager whose role is, as the name suggests, to manage outsourced software development. Your primary point of contact for any concerns that may emerge is the project manager, who handles all matters relating to the development and launch of your product.

 

You will meet the project manager at the beginning of your project's development and collaborate with them on its plan. Once the project plan and budget have been authorized, the project manager must adhere to the schedule and budget. Typically, the PM already possesses tried-and-true techniques for managing remote and in-house teams.

 

The project manager is responsible for planning sprints, establishing deadlines, controlling delivery, establishing a delivery calendar, and preparing feature demonstrations. Changes, recommendations, comments, and complaints - you can confidently direct them to the project manager and expect the necessary actions to be made.

 

HOW DO YOU OUTSOURCE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT?  

 Outsourced software development offers several benefits, including increased productivity, enhanced product quality, and cost savings. You cannot outsource IT development successfully without careful planning; thus, having a good outsourcing strategy is the first step in finding a vendor who can meet your objectives.

When it comes to outsourcing software, several variables might affect the outcome. However, there are a few things in particular that businesses need to remember.

 

Determine your aims

Cost reduction is a typical incentive to outsource, but it's not the only reason; don't restrict your vendor search for pricing alone. Utilizing the latest technologies, optimizing processes, and decreasing the risk of corporate expansion are further advantages of outsourcing. Your objectives must be reasonable, well-balanced, and attainable.

 

Define tasks for delegation

While some organizations are renowned for their coding expertise, others are renowned for their consulting services. Therefore, to choose the ideal outsourcing partner, it is essential to specify the duties to be outsourced precisely.

 

You should distribute less critical jobs at the beginning of your outsourcing journey.

 

Assess your technological profile

Because software development outsourcing typically occurs in a remote environment, your vendor must have a technological profile that matches your requirements. To achieve this, we suggest compiling a list of the resources your project requires. In addition, don't overlook security and data protection elements, as data leakage is prevalent.

 

Create a productive workplace

Foster positive relationships between your staff and outsourced personnel by informing them of the outsourcing objectives, avoiding rumours, and bridging cultural gaps between your team and your vendor's team.

Ensure that your organization is prepared for change.

 

There is no surefire way to ensure that an outsourcing endeavour will end in complete success.

However, some measures may be taken to boost a company's chances of success. Further, to improve quality, release frequency, and cooperation, client firms should choose outsourcing partners that use the Agile approach to manage their development projects flexibly. It is also recommended to use sophisticated tools for effective project task management to monitor the project's development.

 

 MODELS FOR SOFTWARE OUTSOURCING  

 The practice of outsourcing software development entails more than merely paying a third-party vendor to write code on your behalf. In reality, the development process begins with the choice of an outsourcing model.

 Here, we will explore the three primary options: time and material, fixed price, and dedicated staff.

Let's study each one in more detail.

 Time and Material Model

Using T&M, the client pays just for the time spent on development. This approach is appropriate for small to medium-sized projects with no specified prerequisites. Additionally, it is suitable for tasks with low resources (1-3 resources).

 

Pros of Time and material model

Flexibility

Due to the undetermined nature of the initial specifications, the client can quickly alter the work plan if circumstances dictate. Consequently, T&M works well with numerous agile techniques.

 

Client engagement

As a result of the use of agile approaches, the client can view all stages of development. This enhances the possibility that the final product will meet the client's requirements.

Cons of Time and material model

Budget:

Undefined needs complicate budget estimation.

Slow speed to market

Throughout the project, T&M requires extensive communication, which slows down the process.

 

Fixed-price Model

Hence the name, the fixed-priced approach, assumes that all parties agree in advance on the specifications, project scope, and price. Since adjustments are not possible, this model is best suited for smaller projects. FP is ideal when testing the waters with a new software development vendor.

 

Pros of fixed price model

You will obtain what you require within your budget.

Time-to-market.

As a result of the agreed-upon timelines, the project is more likely to be completed on schedule.

 

Cons of Fixed price model

Risks

The inflexible nature of the FP paradigm makes risk management exceptionally challenging.

 

Dedicated Team Model

Using the dedicated team model, the customer pays a fixed monthly compensation to the hired professionals and administrative expenditures for the project duration.

This style of collaboration is ideal for long-term projects with ambiguous needs and massive internal projects where the client's team lacks specialized knowledge.

 

Pros of Dedicated Team Model

-The client has complete authority over their assigned team and workload.

-No enrollment hassles. Since the vendor handles all hiring and administrative responsibilities, you may focus solely on the commercial aspects of a project.

 

Cons of Dedicated Team Model

Unclear requirements

The absence of well-formed standards offers remote team freedom for creativity, which might lead to differences between client expectations and the final product. These trials can be utilized with a leading software development company.

BENEFITS OF SOFTWARE OUTSOURCING  

In general, outsourcing software development enables businesses to meet the difficulties of decreasing overhead costs, rapidly assembling a distant technical team, and consequently accelerating the product's time to market. Below are some of the enticing aspects of outsourcing software development:

 

Flexibility

Customers can engage with software outsourcing providers only when necessary. In addition, in contrast to permanent employment, there is no legal requirement or duty to maintain a long-term contract, giving consumers a choice to pay for outsourcing as the project progresses. This is especially advantageous compared to hiring full-time in-house developers 365 days a year, when their expertise may not be as necessary following the completion of a project.

 

Reduced development and overhead expenditures

The most typical reason organizations outsource their development projects is the significant cost savings. Reducing expenses and adhering to a budget enables firms to expand and scale their operations and meet market demand effectively. Consequently, cost savings are the fundamental advantage of outsourcing software development for enterprises.

 

Faster development and time-to-market

Since the outsourced staff is already skilled and well-versed in the needed technologies and tools, there will be no need for extra time spent on training and onboarding, saving customers time to speed up the development process. This is especially helpful for large international corporations, where decision-making and approvals may take longer.

 

Changes will be handled immediately to keep projects on track. The remote development staff works swiftly and delivers on schedule, giving customers a competitive edge.

 

HOW IS SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT DONE: THE PROCESS  

Regardless of the complexity of a software product, it must be adaptable, easy to maintain, and upgradeable. This can be accomplished by planning each phase, from brainstorming through maintenance, in advance. The software development life cycle (SDLC) stages vary between vendors.

 

However, the optimal SDLC methodology should include the following steps:

  • Ideation

  • Planning

  • Design\Coding

  • Testing

  • Deployment and maintenance

IDEATION

Every endeavour begins with a concept. However, ideas are not born from thin air. Identifying a business need is the first step in determining how to fulfil it.

In most cases, an ideation process comprises the following phases:

 

  • Evaluation of the project's viability and risk reduction can be achieved through a feasibility study.

  • Project scope determination

  • Identifying deliverables (the anticipated project outcomes)

  • Identifying stakeholders

  • Creating a business case that justifies undertaking the project.

  • Creating a work statement detailing the project's goals, scope, and deliverables.

 

PLANNING

 An important part is ensuring that all the relevant development tools and platforms are available and accessible. Additionally, you must ensure that your daily operations run smoothly without depleting your development resources or interfering with them.

 

Having well-structured paperwork is an essential part of your success. In addition, communication, job procedures, reporting and team interaction benefit from ensuring that documentation is always consistent.

 

In the planning phase, the following steps should be taken:

  • Plan-making for the task at hand

  • Putting together a team, determining the responsibilities of each member

  • Calculating the budget and ensuring that everyone has the appropriate resources (in terms of hardware and software) are all steps in constructing your team and preparing for potential problems.

Consider creating a software requirements specification (SRS) during the planning phase, which serves as a document outlining the goals and specifications of the product's development.

 

DESIGN

The design phase of a software project is an essential part of its lifespan. The product's overall design is referred to as architecture.

It may include the following:

 

  • Interface — how users engage with and respond to the product.

  • What operating systems will the product support, according to its definition (Android, iOS, etc.)

  • Communications — methods the product will communicate with other assets (the central server, for example) (the central server, for example)

  • The app's security includes mechanisms to prevent data leaks, such as SSL encryption and password protection.

Creating a prototype, a visual depiction of how the project appears and functions can also be part of the design phase.

 

CODING

'Translating' a product's design into existing software is the primary goal of this stage of the SDLC, which serves as its foundation.

 

A single developer can finish small projects, but large projects need all duties to be divided among the team members according to their specialities. Thus, a front-end developer constructs the product's UI and interactions with the server; database administrators add all the essential data to the database.

 

The code must fit the project's needs and the stakeholders' expectations. Thus, it's no surprise that this step takes the longest. However, it's the simplest, provided the conceptualization and planning stages are well-executed.

This phase aims to produce a working product and documentation of the source code.

 

TESTING

Quality assurance (QA) professionals will review the product once development is complete to ensure it satisfies all specifications. Several methods are used to ensure that the program is safe to use.

 

In order to ensure that the program executes its specified functions in a manner expected by the user, functional testing is required.

This is done to test the software's ability to handle a significant workload.

Unit testing to make sure that each module operates as anticipated

Testing for security flaws to verify that no sensitive data is at risk of being leaked

Testing the software's usability to see if it's user-friendly and responsive

The QA team then retests the software once the developer fixes the problem; this procedure must be done multiple times to ensure that the final output is free of flaws.

 

DEPLOYMENT AND CONTINUOUS MAINTENANCE

Once the testing phase is completed, and there are no bugs or other faults in the product, it is released for beta testing.

During the initial beta testing phases, the support staff gathers user feedback while the development team fixes any issues that may surface.

 

The product goes on sale as soon as it's perfected in response to user feedback. However, its life cycle doesn't end there: instead, the product is continually upgraded to increase performance and adapt to the constantly evolving needs of its users.

 

 

HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT VENDOR  

 Consider the following four factors when outsourcing your software development processes:

 

Select the Outsourcing Service Provider Wisely

Your software's quality is highly dependent on the quality of your outsourcing provider.

 

A high-quality software development company is capable of creating software that increases the efficiency of your business. However, using a software development firm with a poor reputation could jeopardize your business.

 

How do you choose the finest software outsourcing firm for your business?

Searching for software outsourcing service providers is not always sufficient to read their ratings and testimonies. Instead, you must examine some of their earlier work.

Their work demonstrates their competence and excellence.

Additionally, it proves their technical talents. Browsing through past projects, apps and portfolios would be helpful at this point.



Observe the following features:

  • User experience is the ease of navigation and content engagement.

  • Mobile functionality refers to a tool's performance on mobile devices.

  • The design reflects how aesthetically pleasing the software is.

  • Timings for software load: How rapidly the utility loads.

 

Begin with a Test Project

Before selecting a software development outsourcing company, you must know its skills.

Begin by assigning their team a test software development project. Then, you can determine whether to continue working with them based on their performance on this project.

Through this test project, you can discover the following about your outsourcing partner:

Does your outsourced workforce ask pertinent questions regarding communication?

Are they able to efficiently comply with instructions?

Regarding their processes, is your outsourced workforce transparent and trustworthy?

Are they capable of keeping their word?

Time management: 

  • Does your outsourced partner have their internal deadlines?

  • Can they submit their work on time?


Define Goals

It is assertive that you properly document the objectives for your outsourced project.

However, they must be reasonable, well-balanced, and attainable.

Although the objectives of each software development project can differ, establishing clear expectations from the outset can significantly impact growth and development. It is also essential for measuring outsourcing's success.

In addition, as your project develops, you should do timely evaluations. This might assist you in making the necessary adjustments before expending excessive expenditures.


Utilize Performance Monitoring Instruments

It might be challenging to monitor the performance of your remote tech staff when you outsource software development.

Consider the matter carefully. Your team could be remote and located thousands of kilometres away.

How will you establish:

 

  • If they are in the office during business hours.

  • If they are browsing personal websites.

  • If you are being billed for idle work hours.

 

 

author

Mario Olomu

Content Writer

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