It can be challenging to find the best software development company to meet your needs. There is often more to outsourcing that meets the eye, and choosing the wrong firm can cost you time, money, and your project’s position in the marketplace.
What are your project requirements?
Do you need to make a web application or a conventional website? Will the most complicated feature on this site be a blog or shopping cart, or will your project need to be integrated with a customized back-end system, such as an ERP or payment system? Do you have a maximum budget or a strict delivery timeline, or is having features your customers will love your biggest priority?
If your needs go beyond what can be found in a plug-in or a ready-made program, you need to find a software development firm with a wide range of expertise, such as software engineering, user interface optimization, web analytics, traditional web design, and more.
Furthermore, with many technical services, compromising on price may lead to a compromise in quality. If your application or project must be created from scratch, then the firm will probably need to construct something that the developers have never created before. Investing in a team with creative, flexible, experienced professionals increases your chances of getting the details right earlier on, allowing you to enter the market much sooner.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help the process of outsourcing your software development project go as smoothly as possible.
Proven track record
Although a firm’s portfolio may be impressive, it’s essential to know more about what happened behind the scenes. Even if the projects and web applications themselves look great, you have no way of knowing if these endeavors were delivered under budget and on time. The final project may have come to fruition only after constant conflicts between the software developers and the client. Asking for references now can lessen the chance of unpleasant surprises later, and an established company should have at least a few satisfied clients who would be willing to speak with you.
If a firm’s portfolio or client list is attracting you to a particular firm, you need to know whether the same software developers and engineers would also be assigned to your project. Make sure to ask about the specific developers who would be a part of your development team. When possible, ask for a reference from a client who has worked with these individuals before.
Maintain constant communication
Transparency is key in any client-provider relationship, especially if you are considering outsourcing a project to people you may never meet in person. In this digital era, the channels to maintain communication are as numerous the people who need them.
If you want to receive occasional updates and follow the progress with a project management tool, make sure the team and project manager are willing and able to use these tools. If you need frequent updates with details along the way, make sure that the project manager knows this and budgets time for these conversations. If the software developers use their own particular process, consider using their tools to ease the process.
Regardless of the exact process and tools of communication being used, your team of developers should be able to provide clear milestones and delivery dates, as well a list of their requirements from you.
As your project and relationship with the firm are coming to an end, determine what type of assistance, if any, you will need once the final project has been delivered. Will you be able to contact the firm once the application is up and running? How many iterations are included in your package? Will you be given the source files once the project is over?
The source files, such as descriptions of your database structures, access to code repositories, login credentials for site hosting, and Photoshop and Illustrator files, are essential to maintaining full ownership of your project. If you hope to make even one slight adjustment to your project in the future, ensure that your contract is transparent about the delivery of the source files upon completion of the project.
Finding the best software development company for your needs should not be taken lightly. In our e-book, “Best Practices for Software Outsourcing,” we elaborate on the factors that your company should take into consideration when looking to contract your project or web application to a software development firm.
At Santex, our software technology professionals abide by the values of participation, trust, passion, and courage when building a relationship with our clients. Our multidisciplinary teams are constructed with the goal of having “the best talent in the right moment,” and our business model prides itself on being able to provide flexible, creative solutions to meet your needs.