How can you minimise risk when selecting an overseas developer to partner with?
Are you concerned about partnering with an overseas developer to bring your app or web service idea into reality? You’re not the first to have such concerns. There are some obvious benefits to working with a locally based company. You can develop your working relationship in person and are able to physically walk into their office and meet with the developers if some sort of confusion arises or there’s something that needs sorting out fast. The problem with local though is usually cost. Whether you’re someone with a great idea and no team or a multinational company looking into cost saving measures, outsourcing development work is often the only realistic way to stay in budget. Perhaps you’re still hesitant though? You’ve heard some sort of horror story or it feels like you’d be losing control of the process?
Four steps to outsourcing success
The good news is that there are very few truly bad actors out there. There are quite a few whose abilities aren’t up to scratch, but they’re not actually trying to trick you out of your money and with some simple precautions you can steer clear of these types of companies too.
- First of all, check their references. Take a look at some of their existing work and contact some of those previous clients to find out what they were like to work with. Especially value the views of other techies who have partnered with them before. Anyone unwilling to put you in touch with former clients: move on to the next option.
- Next, if possible, start them off with a small project. This is particularly relevant when looking for a partner on a large or long term project. If you don’t like the way things turn out, it’ll be no great loss to ditch them and try someone else.
- Whatever the size of the project, set a lot of milestones. As with starting on a small project, the benefit of milestones is that they allow you to check that progress is being made in the way that you want. Again, poor performance can be picked up on early in the process and by creating a natural contact point you’re able to check on progress regularly and avoid any unpleasant surprises late in the day.
- Good oversight. You’ve probably noticed that most of these points are essentially about oversight, that’s because it’s the key to making sure that outsourcing works for you and that you don’t get caught with the wrong partner for the job. Central to any oversight plan you put in place, is that you need to have a trusted project manager at your end, with appropriate technical experience. Especially if you’re not technically minded yourself, make sure that you find someone for your local team who has an understanding of your vision, can communicate it effectively to your outsourced team and who will be able to pick up on technical issues and problems without needing to be told by the developers.
Whether you’re an experienced developer yourself or totally new to the game, a large corporation or a budding entrepreneur, the steps outlined above will put you in good stead to ensure that your outsourced project has the best possible chance of success.
Over the last 15 years here at Ekreative, we’ve partnered with firms and individuals from all corners of the world. We’ve seen a wide array of different cases and have a pretty good feel for the projects that go smoothly and those that encounter problems. That’s why we’ve put a number of measures in place to make sure that even a client totally new to the world of app development will find the process easy and painless and to ensure that every project meets the client’s expectations with regards to both function and quality.
One of the most important measures is our team of top notch project managers. Given the key role that oversight has in ensuring the success of a project, all of our project managers are proactive and communicative, making sure that you are kept well inside the loop at all stages of development. Whilst we would still of course recommend having your own in house technical oversight, many of our clients testify to the responsive and inclusive experience they’ve encountered when working with us.