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Outsourcing software development projects

How to get the best results from Outsourcing software development projects

While you conceive the notion of outsourcing your software development project; the first things that drive your thought processes is the fear that the initiative may not work as per your plans, the apprehensions that this may not exactly be the most cost effective solution or that it may not meet your Quality Standards.

In order to get the best out of your outsourcing project or initiative it is very important that you consider and focus on the following:

1. The most important thing is to ensure that you do not rush and engage the lowest price point or on a first-cum-first serve basis, or a known provider. Evaluate and closely review the proposal given to you by the provider. You can seek various proposals by putting up your project specs and requirements not only to your known vendors, but also utilizing various portals like ELANCE, etc. The Technical and Commercial proposal should be closely evaluated, and this will help you clearly ascertain if the service provider or outsourcing company has the right expertise.

2. Invest a little time to research the background and work history of the provider. Look for positive and negative feedbacks from previous clients. Service providers and outsourcing companies are usually rated by previous clients. So these are good indicators of competence and expertise.

3. Personally spend some time talking to and evaluating the actual people who would be working in your project. They are the real game changers, and not the Sales representative at your Vendor Company. The projects that the team members have themselves worked on in the current company or with past employers would give you more clarity about the capability of the team.

4. Make sure you have a clear set of requirements, or ensure your provider builds one for you if you don’t have one. The approach, vision and intelligence a provider demonstrates while putting together your project requirements, project specifications and proof of Concept or Wireframes is often a very good indicator of the capabilities of the provider.

5. Lastly, make sure that the lines of communications between you and the service provider are working properly. In outsourcing projects, communications play a key role in the success of the implementation. It is also very important to set strict timelines and clear deadlines for the delivery of the project. Ensure that your Vendor provides you a clear communications and review plan and timeline.

-Sumit Debnath