Organizations use cloud-based and packaged applications for a number of tasks, but a custom solution is sometimes needed to fill a specific business requirement. In-house software development might seem like an appealing option on the surface. You work directly with your own developers who are focused on your organization’s applications. An in-house development team will fully support your business goals and culture. You can closely monitor their progress and maintain full control over the development process.
However, there’s a downside when you try to handle software development in-house. Recruiting, training, onboarding and retaining quality software developers can be an expensive proposition. Developers are in high demand. Even if you manage to find top talent, you’ll probably have to pay top dollar. You also have to purchase, manage and maintain all necessary hardware and software, plus licensing. Finding developers and technology and setting everything up can be a long process, so it could be a while before you see a return on these investments.
As a result, many organizations find that outsourcing software development makes more sense.From a cost standpoint, instead of finding and paying employees, you pay for specific services for a period of time, all of which are defined in a contract. If you need more services for different projects, you simply update your contract. Because outsourced developers use their own tools and services, you don’t have to purchase and maintain on-premises technology.
When you outsource software development, you’re likely to have access to more expertise, in terms of both knowledge and the size of the team, than you would if you assembled an in-house team. This also provides you with more scalability and flexibility should business needs change. Once the project is defined and the contract is signed, an outsourced development team can hit the ground running.
Despite the advantages, outsourcing software development is not a panacea. Many outsourced software projects fail due to a lack of communication, both internally and externally. Organizations need to clearly define business objectives and software development requirements first.Otherwise, it’s virtually impossible to validate the software development provider’s ability to meet them. When relying heavily on an outside party, you need to vet everything from technical capabilities to data security to disaster recovery.
Keep in mind that outsourcing doesn’t absolve you of all responsibilities in the software development process. Communicate with outside developers to share critical project details and keep projects on schedule.Of course, some organizations outsource too many responsibilities, including user interface design and the overall user experience. You know your users better than anyone, so if you delegate these tasks, make sure you communicate what the optimal user interface and experience should look and feel like.
Of course, all the planning in the world can’t prevent certain things from going wrong. Have backup plans in place and be ready for unforeseen circumstances that affect your timeline and budget. And make sure you have an exit strategy just in case.
At SSD, software development is all about maximizing productivity and efficiency. If you have unique business needs that can’t be filled by packaged and cloud-based applications, outsourcing may be your best option. Let us show you how our software development team can help you control costs, accelerate time to value, and improve how you do business.