Due to many company operations, there is usually a need for more expertise and help in some business areas. This calls for consultancy services or the hiring of more skilled staff. In matters IT, outsourcing is common whereby companies engage other companies with more expertise or knowledge in a particular field. This is necessary, especially in software development, because there is a need to involve as many teams in the different stages.
Nearshoring can be a cost-cutting measure in short-term projects whereby permanent staff do not need to be hired for a job. It can also be considered a business need to delegate, especially where there is a lack in expertise or resources. In the tech industry, software application development is the most outsourced IT function. If a business has an IT department, should it outsource for software development?
Outsourced IT Support For Software Development
Software development involves creating computer software using one or more programming languages. It is an intricate process that requires a lot of consultation across the board. Software development involves various stages that are necessary in the creation of operational software. It is quite an interactive process whereby the various teams and their customers are deployed in the design of the final product to determine its functionality. Software development is dependent on an organization’s development model. The following are some of the stages that are common in most software development models:
- Product specification
- Product validation
Compared to traditional software development approaches, most IT companies today consider agile development an essential phase in software development whereby the collaboration of various parties in the creation of software has been deemed crucial in software development.
The Need To Outsource
The following are some of the reasons why a company would consider outsourced IT support:
1. The Company Is A Startup
This is whereby the company does not have the experience or expertise in IT to develop software application for their business.
2. The Need To Improve On Quality And Service Delivery
This is whereby the company wants better quality from a pool of talent or experienced professionals. Expertise is necessary in the IT industry because it is a highly innovative field.
3. To Reduce The Costs Of Operation
This is one of the main reasons most businesses outsource because large-scale production in most countries is considerably cheaper. They could also outsource from another company because the production process would be more expensive if they hired in-house.
The Benefits of Outsourcing
- The company gets access to knowledge and expertise that they do not already have
- There is no need to micromanage because the outsourced company has the experience
- They get optimal market rates and skills according to their budget
- They get to delegate and focus on other essential business operations
- Application of agile methodologies whereby communication is enhanced as there is the advantage of scalability
The biggest problem with outsourcing is communication. There is a need for a lot of communication which can delay a project. Relationship management is necessary in the various stages of the product’s development to ensure that all the parties agree on the procedures and processes needed for the product’s success.
A business has to be clear on its goal and vision for its project and ensure that communication channels are kept open and cordial during the production process. There is an aspect of joint ownership in the product, and therefore both companies must collaborate in the process.
Agile methodologies allow clients to be involved in all the development stages. Hence, the client contributes to its development and is also at par with the final product.
Nearshoring and Offshoring
For a company to decide whether to outsource outside the country or within its borders has a lot to do with the expected quality and costs involved.
Nearshoring is whereby a company decides on outsourcing from a nearby country. This is necessary when it cannot onshore expertise, that is, get expertise from another area in its country. On the other hand, offshoring involves obtaining services from other countries.
There could be a management problem with getting services from other countries. This is because of the time zone, cultural differences, and tax policies which is why most companies prefer nearshoring outsourced IT support.
Outsourcing is a competitive business, and most companies provide the best conditions for their clients. It all depends on the company’s country enabling these businesses to trade with other countries, which is why some countries are synonymous with outsourcing.
Considerations For A Business Before Outsourcing
Before outsourcing, the following are some of the things a business should consider:
The Management of The Firm
You need to know more about their management procedures and how they intend to go about the project. This is also necessary to establish the communication procedure for the project.
Compare The Service Providers
Consider all the vendors in the market. Here you get to compare their work as well as their prices. What package are they offering you and the breakdown of the costs involved in production.
Find out more about their tools and resources for the job. How well equipped are they for the job?
Try to find out more about their service delivery, plans, and how organized they are. Do they adhere to set timelines and goals?
The Business Agreement
You will need to read the contract and probably hire a lawyer to read the fine print. This is to ensure that you do not sign a document with ambiguous obligations and that the terms and conditions are as you agreed on.
The need to outsource depends not so much on the location but rather on what you need done, and the best service offering in the market. Software development is an important aspect of an organization’s IT solutions. It can be used to address various business problems. It then becomes essential for companies to determine whether to develop their programs in-house or to outsource for more expertise or knowledge. This, of course, depends on a company’s current needs and their budgeted expenditure for the project.