Outsourcing web development has always been a topic that raises many questions and uncertainties. For example, during initial conversations with entrepreneurs, I often hear, “Is it a smart idea to do web development externally?” and if the client decides to hire external experts for the project, then the question arises, “What’s the best way of outsourcing?”. As a company specializing in offshoring for several years, we are happy to dispel any ifs and doubts and share our tips & tricks on how to outsource web development.
Choose outsourcing cooperation model
First, it’s worth noting that there are two ways to get outside professionals for your web development project. You can employ a freelancer or hire a web development company. There are many differences between these two ways. However, it is worth mentioning 3 aspects of cooperation that distinguish them the most – quality, cost, and trust.
Offshoring to web development agencies can be more expensive, but you gain reliability and, in some instances, quality in return. Of course, I don’t deny that cooperating with freelancers can be a great choice. Still, it often involves composing people specializing in a given field who have never worked together before, which can cause problems in communication and mismatching working hours, which will significantly affect the web development process. However, if you have no experience in supervising projects and cooperation with an experienced, professional, and trusted team, bet on collaboration with a web development company. Before the partnership starts, it is worth considering some issues to find an ideal partner. If you are worried that you will miss some critical points, we have gathered the most important ones.
Benefits of outsourcing web development
Perhaps you are hesitating whether establishing cooperation with external specialists is the ideal solution in your case and however you are considering hiring your own team permanently. In this case, it is worth mentioning that currently, on the IT market, recruiting the right specialist can take +50 days. This means +50 days spent searching candidates, conducting initial interviews, competency analysis, and introducing a candidate to the development process. I know what I’m talking about, as I co-manage an IT agency, now and then we have to deal with recruiting new tech experts, and you can read more about our recruitment process and how we build our teams in our FAQ.
Also, choosing to work with a professional project management and development services company allows you to achieve specific business goals that you might not focus on when building your team.
Software development outsourcing allows:
- saving costs
- working with worldwide tech talent
- to focus on the development of the company and its products
- to outrun your competitors at the beginning.
To complete the information about the rightness of outsourcing web development, you can see that 94% of Fortune 500 companies use external tech experts for their needs. Although there are many pros and cons, we presented them in one of our previous posts.
The perfect way to save costs
When you recruit in-house specialists, you must invest in their professional growth and a comfortable workspace, and you must provide a wage regardless of whether they are on vacation or sick leave. In an outsourcing partnership, you only pay for the task that is completed. Managing a company, you surely know the costs of running your own business, and you know that those related to employee salaries are the highest. That’s why nearshoring is becoming more and more popular, i.e., establishing cooperation with specialists from other countries, where salary rates are lower. I wrote about how to find a perfect nearshoring software development partner in an earlier post, where you can also see comparisons between countries when it comes to costs of the software development process. Applover is located in Poland, where the pricing of employees’ salaries is favorable from investors’ perspective from Western Europe, USA or Canada, though, the level of skills of our tech experts is world-class, which translates into high quality of offered services.
Unilever, a prominent European consumer products corporation, has decided to outsource the construction of its ERP system to external specialists. Delegating was a realistic and required alternative because the corporation couldn’t devote enough resources to building a sophisticated solution from the ground up in-house. This action resulted in an annual savings of $700 million in operational activities.
If we are talking about financial issues, it is worth bringing up the subject of the development budget. The cost of web creation will depend on the size and duration of the project. With more complicated and more extensive schemes, the number of people involved is higher, directly affecting the costs related to remuneration and finally the final amount. In Applover, the cooperation on a project starts with filling in the brief and workshop sessions, during which the team gets to know the product and its goals. The details of how much it cost to develop a website are described in this link.
Opportunity to work with tech talent around the world
Deciding to cooperate with an external agency, you can choose not only from your country but also that a whole range of experts specializing in a given field opens up to you. Of course, you don’t have to know what technology will work for your project, thus establishing cooperation with an experienced agency means you can get advice in many areas concerning your project. Nowadays, offshoring is so popular that many specialists have experience in projects and web development processes for external clients. And the greater the number of such projects, the greater the improvements that translate into a high-quality product. And a cohesive team means fewer mistakes along the way. So, it can be said that by developing the web externally to an experienced agency, you gain an edge over your competitors at the start.
Development of the company and its products
As we are already talking about gaining a competitive advantage, I can’t leave out the most significant – development. And outsourcing is nothing else than gaining time for activities supporting the development of the whole company and its products. Professionally developed products are the foundation for success on the market. We wrote about how to prepare a digital product specification while outsourcing on our blog. Adequately prepared product specifications will translate into streamlining the whole process. But don’t forget that a product will not be successful if it is the only strong business point. Website in itself can hit your taste, but it can completely miss the expectations of your target group. Therefore, offshoring development to an external company gives you time to focus on strategy, promotion, PR, and sales. It is also an excellent time to establish new business relations, participate in industry events, or generate new ideas concerning, for example, finances. Many areas need to be taken care of in business, and devoting spare time to development may translate into neglecting other areas.
Ensure good communication
Communication is the basis of good organization. Different work schedules, time zones, and availability are common problems you have to face when outsourcing. However, by being aware of these obstacles, you can make communication a priority. Remember, in order for your project to go well, you shouldn’t be afraid to speak your mind.
The tools we use to communicate and track project progress are Slack, Google Meet and GitHub, Jira. We wrote more about the apps that allow remote communication and those that enable management while outsourcing here.
Besides, don’t be afraid to speak your mind. Whether you decide to work with freelancers or an external IT agency – ask! When offshoring the lion’s share of a large project, you don’t need to know everything, and don’t be afraid to share your ideas or feedback after a given part. When cooperating with an agency, the web development process is usually clearly defined, and different dynamics characterize each stage. A document that will explain the specifics of the agency’s work is the Process Book.
Well-planned organization of the development process is the key to following the timeline presented in the contract and meeting deadlines. The person who ties everything together and reports on the progress is the Project Manager. It is this person’s responsibility to stay on top of every significant aspect of the project. Thus, in the beginning, Project Managers organize planning meetings. At which key information is discussed, and specific roles and responsibilities are assigned to each team member. Every one or two weeks, we hold sprints – meetings during which we discuss the process flow, introduce improvements, and point out the tasks to be completed. Thanks to good planning of work and allocation of roles in the project, you can get information from the Project Manager about the progress of work.
Have a contract
Taking care of your safety is vital, and having a contract is a must-have. A properly structured contract will outline the time and cost to complete the service and your role in the process. A warrant also avoids empty promises and will allow you to have multiple answers at different stages of the web development process.
An undeniable benefit of having a contract is protection in case of unfortunate situations. You’ll be financially protected if something goes wrong. Without a legal agreement, the chances of conflicts and nasty fights increase dramatically.
Additionally, if you prefer, we can sign an NDA. Let us know if you need us to provide you with it or already have your own NDA. If you’re wondering about similar topics, check out Applover’s FAQ, where we’ve tried to dispel your doubts.
Do you want to know more about outsourcing web development?
Is outsourcing a perfect solution for web development?
Developing a web externally seems like the perfect solution. After all, you can gain time, money, and quality. However, the most important thing is to follow specific rules and follow certain principles. Web development involves investing a more considerable amount of money, so it is worth choosing professionals in this field. Furthermore, if you rely on good communication and proper project management, you can gain all these benefits. I hope the tips and tricks I have mentioned will help you make a good decision.