Custom software development also called tailored or bespoke software development, is when applications and software solutions are made to solve unique problems your business faces in the real world or to give your business the functionality it needs.
It’s a process with many steps and layers. Custom development is used when a ready-made solution won’t work. These solutions are made to fit the needs of your business.
Custom software development has pros and cons. In the long run, it can help businesses be more efficient and save money. Most of the time, a lot of work, time, and money are needed. Before you spend money on custom software development, you need to know why you’re doing it. This will help you stay focused on what you want to do and avoid common mistakes.
Why Do You Want to Outsource?
According to a report from Deloitte that came out in 2020, the main reason why 70 percent of businesses choose to outsource instead of making their software is that it is more cost-effective.
Outsourcing is the most cost-effective option because companies can hire developers in other countries for less than they would pay for developers in their own country. This makes sense when you think about how different countries’ economies are. This is why offshore has become more popular but is it all good?
Problems with Outsourcing Custom Software Development
In today’s world, the IT industry is doing well, growing slowly and creating more ways to make money. When it comes to custom software development, however, people in the IT sector have to deal with a lot of problems in this competitive and challenging environment.
These problems make processes more complicated and add to the unpredictability of global markets. They also mean that tools and procedures are constantly being updated in the industry.
5 most common things that go wrong when software development is outsourced:
1. Software requirements are unclear and incomplete
When you outsource your software engineering project, knowing what you want to get out of it is essential. This will help the project go well. One of the most common mistakes companies makes when they outsource software development is not making a requirements document that is clear and easy to understand. Both sides must know precisely what is being asked of them and not just a general idea of what is needed.
Use an organized engineering process to come up with a project requirements document. This process needs to be led by a skilled software product manager. If you don’t have one on staff, you might want to hire one.
Make a detailed requirements specification and scope of work that includes everything from the project’s primary goals to the specific tasks that need to be done for it to be considered a success to who will use it or need access to it. It should also include information about the preferred programming language, development methods, etc., and any changes or additions that can be made along the way.
Having detailed technical requirements ensures that both teams fully understand what is needed. This keeps everyone on track to finish the project on time and helps ensure reasonable requirements.
2. Not enough research was done
Cost is an essential part of the decision-making process, but it is not the only one. Other things to consider are a company’s portfolio and expertise, feedback and reviews, and how your outsourcing partner works in the market.
There are a few things you should look into to make sure that the outsourcing partner you choose for your next project is the right one.
You will have to look into the small details to find out everything. When you’ve done a thorough and detailed analysis, it’s much easier to tell if that team can complete your project.
You should find time to research and get ready because it’s essential. How much time you spend researching should be related to how much money you want to invest and how much help you want from other people.
The depth of your research will depend on the needs of your project. For example, if you have a simple task, you shouldn’t spend more than three or four months looking for your next software development company.
But if you need to grow your technical team from 40 to 70 people or have a 3-year plan, you should take your time and do the proper research.
3. Closely look at the cost proposal and contract.
People often mistake not looking at the estimate, cost proposal, or contract closely enough to see what is included and what is not. Usually, the forecast looks good at first glance, but when you look at it closely, you find that it doesn’t include several essential things.
Ask the outsourcing partner for a complete quote, and make sure they explain what’s included. Here are some questions to help you figure out what this quote is about:
- Who will be on the team that will work on the project? How many people will be working on my project as software developers? Will they work full-time or part-time? Is there a project manager?
- What are your team’s hourly rates?
- How will the money be paid? Are milestones used to figure out payments?
- How many stages and milestones are there?
- When can I expect to get my last bill or payment?
- When the project is done, who will own the source code?
- Is there a way to get out of the deal if progress is slow or the work isn’t up to par?
- How extended is the guarantee that bugs will be fixed if found after the project is done?
- What plans do they have for sharing what they know? What kinds of paperwork will be given?
- Have they thought about how much time and money it will take to teach your team about the project?
- What kind of help will they give after the change is made?
By asking these questions, you can get a good idea of what the software developer wants from you and if it fits within your budget. You also get an idea of how professional and work they are.
4. Not enough and not often enough tracking and monitoring of projects
Many companies don’t keep an eye on how the outsourced project is going, which can also cause it to fail. Most of the time, the status updates say “Yes, everything is on schedule” or “things are fine” instead of giving a detailed report on where things stand about the project plan. Without good supervision, it’s hard to know if the project is on track or if any problems have come up. This can cause the project to take longer than planned and upset everyone.
The best way to avoid these problems is to set up a way to keep track of how the project is going. A project manager on your end should be in charge of the following, if possible:
- Checkpoints where you can see how the project is going and get updates from you and the outsourcing company.
- Set up demos or “show and tells” so you can see what has been made.
- Make sure the deliverables match the deadlines for when they need to be done. Compare how far the project has come to what the company said it would do in its project plan.
- Set acceptance criteria for deliverables so they can be paid for when ready.
- Compare the planned cost with the actual cost to reach a milestone.
- Look over the code often to avoid unpleasant surprises later on, and if you need to make changes, do so during the development process instead of waiting until the project is done.
- Have a plan for what to do if the deliverables have problems or are late.
This will help ensure everyone is on the same page and that any problems are dealt with quickly.
5. Outsourcing to businesses that don’t keep up with modern trends and changes:
Even if it seems like you picked a custom software development company with the best coders, they may use workflows and interfaces only used in their area. This can make a big difference in how end users use your software.
Every region has some negative side, but you should make sure that your partner meets your outsourcing expectations in areas other than technicalities, like legal and compliance risks, cultural differences, and broadband capacity.
Are You Looking for a Software Development Company for Outsourcing?
A new trend is outsourcing custom software development. It is doing so well on the market because the process benefits companies. Experts in the field say that outsourcing will be around for a long time. It can even replace a lot of the ways people are usually hired. But it will take time and patience to do this. Both sides must be intelligent and honest enough to know how much time and money are worth.
Because of this, it is essential to keep these mistakes in mind when dealing. Outsourcing is more of a relationship than a method, so it should be treated like a relationship. There will be problems along the way, but if you think about how good and valuable the result will be, you’ll want to work hard to solve them.