5 Questions to Ask Before Outsourcing Your Code Overseas

October 4, 2017

9:20 am

If your startup is bootstrapping, you’re likely to be looking for ways to cut costs without sacrificing quality. Depending on the nature of your business, using an outsourced development team might be the best solution to get your product built.

However, outsourced teams can become a source of unexpected costs and quite the handful if you don’t know how to manage them properly. Before you outsource overseas, make sure you’ve addressed these 5 key questions.

Do You Have a Plan?

Before you go down the path of hiring a freelance or an outsourced team, you need to have a clear vision and objectives in mind. Ben Hood, Chief Strategy Officer of GogoApps, said:

It is critical for companies considering outsourcing to have a plan for what they need before they look for outsourced talent. Outsourcing can be the most effective way to quickly build an engineering team, or to help realize your vision. But you need to bring that vision and a plan to achieve it, or you risk wasting time and money.”

Is the Team Design-Savvy?

When evaluating teams, pay particular attention to their design skills. Having a team that can integrate the latest interface trends will help you create a more user-friendly experience and could impact your bottom line. Anthony Conti, CCO of Software Ops said in an article by TechCo’s Adam Rowe:

“The increased use of AI and bots will change the practice of interface design into the hyper use of interaction design. Micro interactions within the UI will become a highly focused design study. Interaction design is evolving very quickly as brands want to have their product/services in the messaging space.”

If your outsourcers can’t keep up with the latest innovations, your app could quickly fall behind the curve.

Do They Specialize in Your Industry?

A team that is experienced in your industry can save you a lot of headaches during the development phase, especially if your product needs to follow regulations, security, or other strict requirements.

“If possible, find an outsourcing company that has already worked in your industry, so they already have some of the domain knowledge,” Ben said. “It won’t always be possible to find an exact match, but by reviewing their portfolio you can gain insight into how your application could fit in with some of the work they’ve have done in the past.”

How Well Do They Communicate?

Globalization is becoming the norm over the exception, and your outsourced team could live anywhere around the world. Where they are doesn’t really matter, but how well they communicate with you does. Everything from support tickets and updates to bringing on new developers to your project can create potential communication barriers. To ensure seamless communication overseas, make sure the team has a liaison who can communicate fluently in both languages, and that you take the time to “get it in writing.”

“Real-time collaboration platforms like Slack, Google Hangouts, and Skype make it easy to connect with teams halfway around the world. However, to ensure that objectives and instructions are well-defined and understood by all, you might want to be a little more formal with important communications,” Ben said.

 

“For instance, send an email about approving a new engineer, or expanding the scope of the project, instead of just discussing it over a video chat. And, at least when you are first working with a team, it can be helpful to over-communicate so that everyone gets on the same page.”

Will Your Code Be Secure?

Any code developed for your company is your code. Before entering into any outsourcing agreement, make sure that you own all code, understand how it’s protected, and know who has access to it. Always have legal counsel look over any contract to ensure your code is protected before you sign.

“Intellectual property issues are critical to understand before you start working with the outsourcing company. Because you are paying for the development work, you should have exclusive rights to use the code. You should know exactly what you are getting from the developers,” Ben said.

If you are dissatisfied with how long your product is taking to get developed, an outsourced team might be the answer to getting your product built and launched for an affordable price. Complete this form to discover how we can help you build your product, fast, with the results you want.

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This article is brought to you in partnership with GogoApps. To find out more about hiring a development team learn more here.

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Tishin is a technology journalist and correspondent. She has written for TechCrunch, Demand Studios and Fitness, and has regular network segments on local Phoenix affiliate stations. She holds a Master’s degree in Clinical and Sport psychology, and has covered many areas of technology ranging from 3D printing and game development to neurotech and funding for over 15 years.

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