At first Project outsourcing may sound like a great idea. Pay others to develop on your product without having to worry about hiring temporary employees. However, as easy as this sounds, there are some things you need to consider before you attempt to outsource your product.
1. How will you select a company?
What factors will contribute to select a Web Design And Development Company for outsourcing? What selection criteria have you established? Ask the tough questions. Find out what they really know about your industry.
2. What’s the degree of cultural diversity?
If you are truly going offshore, varying degrees of cultural diversity most likely do exist between the two countries. Those differences may appear to be minimal in initial conversations. Watch out! Is your business analysis thorough enough? Make no assumptions! Did your business analysts specify that each and every one of those sexy data entry screens require an Exit button? An industry standard in the U.S. may not exist in the company and country have selected. Adding requirements that you assumed were obvious will cause cost overruns and missed commitment dates. Surprised? Maintain your business-analysis functions in-house. Value your own employees’ company and product knowledge. Who really knows more about your business?
3. Are the roles and responsibilities communicated? Who is doing what and when?
This seems fairly straightforward to those of us here. If each team member’s roles and responsibilities aren’t communicated, agreed upon and documented, assumptions are made. Programmers are programming what? Business analysts are analyzing what? Is the entire on-site/offshore team involved in design reviews, quality reviews and inspections? This involvement is critical, but the implementation of these activities adds to the bottom line.
4. Are the architectural platforms, operating systems, tools and configuration management in sync?
“Oh yes, we are all using the same operating platforms and development tools on-site and offshore.” Exactly the same tools? Exactly the same versions? Configured exactly the same way? You may be unpleasantly surprised at the discrepancies that will result in your software application performance and results and the dollars it will cost to debug if there is anything out of sync between onshore and off-site operating platforms and software tools.
5. Is there a communication plan?
The average time-zone difference between the U.S. and most countries in Asia that do software development is 13 hours. If you are communicating between India and Colorado, the time difference is 13.5 hours. Both companies will have to commit to doing business and be available at some odd hours during the life of the project. How often do you communicate? What’s the agenda? Is it published throughout the project life cycle? Do you have videoconferencing capability? Is this plan documented, again with roles and responsibilities, and communicated?
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