First Aid in Choosing the Right Outsource Team to Work with
When tasks are piling up, it is easy to burn out and fail to see your operations from a different perspective. Missed deadlines, lack of human resources, etc. do not add value to the work of the whole team. In this situation it is also easy to lag behind your competitors.
That is where IT outsourcing comes into play. Previously seen as a strategy to cater to big businesses, outsourcing has become available to almost every IT entrepreneur.
It is common knowledge that outsourcing helps to find new prospects, create better products and services, and concentrate on your business growth. The outsourcing market has grown vast with the major outsourced IT functions ranging from software web development to consulting.
However, IT outsourcing services still make numerous entrepreneurs uncomfortable. This happens because software development outsourcing is still closely tied to certain risks of delegating your business to unfamiliar teams in other countries.
IT outsourcing companies have become more diverse and complicated as the stakes grew higher. Each outsource technology player tries to work out a unique offering that can potentially make a perfect match to your requirements. But does the offering always stand to quality?
It depends on how thoroughly you understand the technological needs of your company before you finally decide on the right software outsourcing team. The initial preparation and research before you choose the right outsourcing partner may help to avoid mistakes. What other stages are on your way?
Stage 1: Define your reasons for outsourcing
En route to outsourcing, a set of clear reasons why you would want to delegate certain functions to a third party should be made clear from the start. For instance, a major share of business entrepreneurs opt out for a technology partner to bring down costs or focus on core competencies:
Main points to consider:
-Identify technology needs that require outsourcing
-Delegate activities with lowest skill requirements and minimum return
-Focus on company’s core competencies
-Find out which activities can yield high-quality output when done remotely.
The initial stage is likely to be time-consuming as it is necessary to identify the basic technology needs that require outsourcing. Non-essential time-consuming activities are regarded outsource-friendly as they help to reduce the time and focus on the company’s core competencies.
It is time to delegate the activities with the lowest skill requirements and minimum return if you constantly find your workers spending effort on repetitive tasks. By letting an outsource team handle your server management or payroll, you will thus help your in-house team concentrate on delivering a better product.
Stage 2: Know your ideal outsource partner
The next step is to search for an ideal candidate to outsource web development. Asking for recommendations may or may not bring the results as you first need to develop your own vision of the future partner. It largely depends on the type of service or operation that you are planning to outsource.
Moreover, successful matchmaking of a prospective outsource technology vendor requires preparation, too. You should revise and compare the goals and values of your future partner and correlate them with your own company. Your “compatibility” with your future partner can predetermine the success of your cooperation.
Main points to consider:
-Skills and potential of the people that stand behind your future partner
-Availability of a dedicated team of specialists that will inform you at the right time
-Areas of expertise: check if your outsource technology vendor covers your branch
-Company website: this one will highlight the strengths and values that stand behind your future partner
-Transparency of development process, probably based on Agile/Scrum methodology
-Reliability of the remote team and their maturity: just check their profile on the most popular catalogs such as Clutch.co
-Company’s willingness to share your values and motivation to create a better product.
Stage 3: Stay in control
Loss of control is one of the major risks that occur when you start working with a supposedly right outsource technology vendor. It is necessary to identify your goals from the very start of your cooperation and make sure your contractor follows them precisely. You may end up uncovering problem after problem in your software if you’re leaving room for assumptions and different interpretations.
However, this is only the beginning. Working with a third party is all about personal contact and development process transparency.
Main points to consider:
-Stick to an iterative approach to control the workflow
-Clearly identify what performance you expect from your outsource contractor
-Provide clear instructions from the very beginning
-Hold daily/weekly/monthly meetings to stay informed
-Provide easy access to the most important information, share documents
-Ask for an account manager to gain various feedbacks
-Avoid communication delays. This is crucial if you and your outsource partner are in different time zones.
Stage 4: Learn to trust your partner
Success stories of outsourcing share one thing in common: it requires trust to let remote contractors do their share of daily tasks. Trust barriers can sometimes make business leaders micromanage every activity and thus destroy the overall meaning of outsourcing. After all, you want to remove your staff from low-level operations with the help of your outsource technology vendor. But instead, you can find yourself diving into the depths of bureaucracy.
Outsourcing technological needs and business processes can become your smartest investment. Done with measure, quality control of the remote team will help you track the progress and never lose mind over trust issues.
The route to outsourcing is paved with good intentions. It provides instant access to remote teams of educated professionals that can become a key to long-term success of your company. You can get more work done and reduce operational costs, saving the time and effort of your in-house team.
Take your time to prepare for future cooperation with the outsource team, explore the capabilities of your prospective technology vendors, learn to trust them – and see the efficiency of outside operations naturally increase.