There’s never been a higher demand for custom software solutions than there is today. But you may be questioning whether or not it’s worth it to outsource the project to an external developer. Like many business owners, you probably want to weigh your options first before signing any contracts.
To help you make an informed decision, we’ve put together a list of nine questions to ask when outsourcing software development.
Questions to Ask Yourself
1. What Problems Am I Trying to Solve?
This might seem like an obvious question at first, but it’s something you can’t overlook. If you can’t define what you want the software to do, how will you ask developers to develop a software solution for you? Clearly define the goals you want to achieve in your business, then find a way to communicate that to your development team.
2. What Are My Time Constraints and Budget?
Getting your software product to market on time and within budget can make or break its success. Before talking to a development team, you need to know your deadline and how much you’re willing to pay a dev team to meet that date.
Consider these benefits that outsourcing software development can bring:
- An external developer will already have the people, experience, and resources to build your software, so they can hit the ground running and save you time.
- Hiring and training new employees can get expensive, not to mention the potential liabilities a bad hire can bring.
A ready-made team of professionals is much more scalable and can save you from major headaches.
Questions to Ask a Software Development Team
3. What Projects Have You Done Similar to Mine?
One of the quickest ways to see if you should work with a potential partner is knowing if they’ve worked on similar projects before. Experience within your industry is also something you should consider.
If the developer already has experience working in your industry, or if they’ve done similar projects before, there will be less downtime learning the ins and outs of your business and more time getting good work done.
4. What Software Technologies Do You Use?
This question is about understanding the team’s technical experience and training. Your business might need a custom software solution with specific requirements. In contrast, the development team’s skill set might not be well-suited for your project, even if they have a portfolio of similar work.
5. How Do You Find and Hire Your Developers?
Seeing a potential partner’s portfolio is good, but it only paints a partial picture. You’ll want to understand their culture and how they acquire their talent. Look beyond their qualifications and ask about their process of hiring developers. If their values align with yours, you could be a good fit.
6. How Involved Will We Be In the Development Process, and How Will You Communicate Progress to Us?
Some companies will be very transparent about what they do and keep you well informed throughout the development process. Ideally, they’ll give you the names of project leads, invite you to frequent meetings, and be open about what milestones they reach.
Some of the best ones will employ the agile methodology, a highly collaborative process that offers more open communication, increased trust, and more flexibility for all parties involved.
7. What Security Measures Do You Have In Place?
You may be sharing confidential information with your business partners, so privacy and security should always be a top concern. Ask them to protect and preserve your data, and if anyone experiences a security breach or loss of data, know their recovery plan. Do they use cloud storage solutions? What happens to team members who are let go? Do employees sign NDA?
8. How Do You Handle Testing and Quality Assurance?
QA and testing are essential to the software development process. You’ll want to know that your developer partner has strong QA practices that meet your standards. They’ll also need to ensure that the end-user experience will be acceptable.
9. Can You Provide Testimonials or Reviews from Previous Clients?
Success leaves clues. How previous clients feel about the development firm can give you tremendous insight into the quality of their work. You can ask the developer for testimonials or look up their reviews on Google or social media platforms.
Learn More About Outsourcing Software Development
Outsourcing software development can yield incredible results for your business. Reach out to Tech9 to learn more about our full-service development team and how outsourcing software can benefit your operation.