Product Design

April 19, 2019

/ business & Agile

How to turn IT outsourcing cons into pros in a few simple steps?

Piotr Byczko

When you think about how many things you need to consider when deciding about outsourcing an IT project you may have a feeling that it’s far easier to name the drawbacks of remote collaboration rather than mention its bright sides. But there is an easy way to convert common concerns about It outsourcing into its benefits and, as a result, in a successful (and remote) project delivery. How to turn its cons into pros in a few simple steps?

Common concerns about IT outsourcing

When collaborating remotely you cannot meet your interlocutor face to face and in such indirect communication, it’s usually harder to express various subtle emotions. This becomes even more complex when both teams are based in different time zones and the messages are read and responded to with a delay.

The lack of seamless communication may also impact the level of trust, especially at the beginning of cooperation. At times people may be worried about whether they have enough control over the project, which is being delivered on the opposite part of the globe. Like it or not, the aforementioned issues with outsourcing the web development may occur at some point of cooperation. However, when the software house takes great care of their partner and knows how to cooperate remotely and efficiently when working with an outsourced project, you should be able to get rid of most of these problems.

What’s more, it is commonly believed that only companies with a large budget can benefit from outsourcing IT projects. The truth is different and in many cases, remote work turns out to be better for startups because of its flexibility and scalability. Outsourcing a digital project instead of hiring a team of developers can help you save up to 20% of total development cost! Let’s take a look at other benefits of remote collaboration. 

Are these the cons or pros of outsourcing IT project?

Some projects seem to be just made for remote development, like migration to microservices. IT outsourcing is profitable, but you need to act wisely to discover all of its advantages. Having in mind certain limitations of the remote work and implementing adequate planning, cooperating with cooperation may have various benefits for both participating sides.  

Remote doesn’t mean chaotic 

Remote cooperation is frequently the only possibility of running and successfully delivering the project, due to the lack of sufficiently skilled developers and resources available (both in time and financial dimension). 

When staying distant in terms of the location and time zones, we usually tend to take greater care on the specs, placing all the mutual arrangements in a written form. Thanks to that the outsourced projects usually have better and more accurate documentation, which not only streamlines the development process and becomes an additional value to the stakeholders but also eases the process of new team members onboarding or handing over the project to another company.

The mentioned distance induces advanced planning, which allows to identify the potential project risks way sooner and to take actions with a view to minimizing them. But remember, when deciding on outsourcing, pay attention to how the software team for your project is composed. The best way to be sure of that is to choose a software house with a wealth of experience and a full-stack team. 

Remote cooperation also allows avoiding the impact of absence caused by sickness or other random situations making people unable to turn in the office. Thanks to the possibility of working from home, random and unexpected absences aren’t an issue anymore - the work may be continued despite the unfavorable circumstances. 

Different time zones provide constant development

Time zones difference, when neglected, may indeed cause various communication issues, but planned wisely may actually become beneficial for the project in various ways. When the project is developed by multiple teams located in different time zones, in the ideal scenario of “complementary” time zones, the project may be developed continuously, by each team passing their work to another to work in their daytime. 

Apart from continuous development, time zone difference may be used for testing and verification. At the end of the day, once a certain part of the functionality is marked as completed, it may be passed to the Quality Assurance team located in a different time zone. Thanks to this approach, the process of development, improvement, and bug fixing may be run uninterrupted, without a need to wait until the testers finish their job.  

Additionally having the development team located in opposite time zone allows to deploy new code and carry on various maintenance works during off-peak hours, thus with a minor impact on the end users of the app or site.

The external team is not a third wheel

Remote cooperation also broadens the horizons as you stop being limited to the advice of your nearest coworkers. The presence of new team members means other standpoints and different ways of coping with seemingly typical issues - and thanks to that - a faster problem-solving. Remember that the developers you are going to work with are experts in their fields and in the past they probably solved lots of problems you may struggle with. 

How to prepare a project to outsource?

But the whole project quality depends not only on the work delivered during the development process. There are some key steps that you should take before making a decision on remote collaboration with a software house. First of all, you need to answer a question - how to prepare the project to outsource it to a software house? I encourage you to read Michał’s article where you find the preparation process described step by step, but let me trace out here its main points, just to have a general look on it:

  1. build a vision of your project;
  2. determine the budget and deadline;
  3. define processes with modules,
  4. define user stories;
  5. define the MVP of your product.

So, as you can see, proper and conscious preparation is the basis of the development process success. 

How to turn outsourcing cons into pros? 

When not planned wisely, remote cooperation may, in fact, fail, nevertheless when conducted with a few important things in mind, it may appear far more beneficial than troublesome. How it may end up for you, mostly depend on your attitude and approach. If you prepare a plan for the remote collaboration process, I can ensure you that experiencing the main benefits of outsourcing a digital project described in this article will be much easier and will make you forget about its cons quickly. 

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