4 Common Mistakes With Offshore Web Development
So, you are looking to get a website, mobile application, custom application or anything of that sort developed offshore. Many organizations, multi-national companies and even individuals choose to go with offshore web development due to the many benefits it provides. The benefits are pretty clear in that you can save money, save time, HR overheads, scale up or down your development needs without worrying, operational savings and much more making it a very lucrative offer if executed correctly. Rather than getting work done locally which can be very expensive and time-taking, you can choose to go with an offshore web development company to really add to your bottom line which any sane person or company loves. It’s not all red roses by any means as if you choose the wrong partner to work with offshore, it can be a disastrous situation for both a client as well as the offshore software development company you choose to work with. Below, we will outline some of the most common mistakes based upon our experience and how you can avoid them when working or choosing to work with an offshore web development company:
✓ Clear Goals & Timelines – The most important thing in any relationship is clarity and this is especially true when it comes to web development offshore or even onshore for that matter. As a client, you need to have specific goals and decisions made before engaging with a software development company. It’s not a bad thing to get advice on certain aspects or matters which is actually a good thing when working with a development partner since they have the necessary experience and expertise. The more clear you are in your head or with your goals internally within your organization, the better it will be for both clients and companies alike. Try to have your goals set and what you want accomplished within a certain timeframe so that all parties involved are not confused or just running like chickens without heads. This mistake is by far one of the most common one’s when working with an offshore web development company as clients will approach a company without a clear set of goals in mind which will waste time, money and resources for all the people involved. The way to avoid this is to set goals internally and write all things down before engaging with the offshore company you are looking at. This way, they will be able to advise you and give you their professional advice based around your needs rather than shooting from the hip. Ideally, you want to have a full specification document in hand which you can share and get feedback on with the offshore web development company in India or any other country you are looking to work with. Lastly, the more clear your goals are, the better idea/planning you will have to deliver against the timelines that you have decided on between yourself and the offshore company you are partnering with.
✓ Communication, Communication & Communication – Like any relationship whether it be personal or professional, communication is the glue that holds everything together. More than likely, if you are working with an offshore web development company, they will be located in a different time zone which further emphasizes the importance of communication being crystal clear. Have clearly laid out dates and times where you are scheduled to be speaking with the offshore web development company so that all the necessary people are informed well in advance to minimize any surprises. Whether it be by phone, Skype, Gtalk or whatever other software you choose to work with, make sure that all people involved are on-board and are well aware of the communication mediums as well as timelines. In addition, try to use some type of project management software such as Trello, Basecamp, FreedCamp, JIRA or any other software of your liking which also allows you to further have the transparency and up to date status of things. The more clear you are in your communication expectations/mediums from day one, the better it will be as they will be no surprises for anyone involved. Lack of communication is one of the most common pitfalls when it comes to working with an offshore web development company. The more you are interacting and communicating with someone whether it be a company or even an individual for that matter, the better your relationship will be and that’s a cold hard fact!
✓ Cultural Understanding & Gap – This is an interesting one and one that is really overlooked when working with an offshore service provider. Granted, the company you are working with more than likely speaks English which is great but what else do you need to keep in mind. Cultural differences, slangs, idioms, unspoken assumptions, acceptable things to say versus unacceptable things to say are all things that need to be kept in mind. One of the best ways to avoid this common mistake is to first find an offshore web company that is experienced working with other clients within the same country as yours. If they work with many other clients are have in the past within the same country as yours, they will be able to better understand your culture and slang versus someone that hasn’t in the past. Also, try to do some research on the country and what their views on certain things are. For example, if you are looking to work within an offshore service provider in Malaysia for an adult website for example, adult content of that sort is completely banned within that country. So, the more research and due diligence you do when choosing an offshore service provider, the better it will be for all the people involved. Lastly, if you are able to find a good web development company offshore that has a lot of experience, this will really help you in the long run as they know what people from your country have come to expect which is a lot easier of course. Of course, if you are not sure of certain things or can’t find your answers online, you can always ask the offshore web development company so you don’t offend them as people always do like to share their culture/views on things if you ask nicely of course.
✓ Quality Guidelines & Testing – This common mistake is more of a universal one really but it really comes into play when working with an offshore software development company especially since they are located remotely to where you are. Since the provider you are working with will be offshore, clear quality guidelines and testing scenarios/cases need to be clearly laid out for the web development company. As an organization, you need to have the right checks and balances in place which will allow you to monitor and see the output quality that you are receiving. Granted, you are working with an offshore web development company due to the many benefits but the last thing you want is a project to be completed without the proper testing and quality in place as this can be a disaster waiting to erupt! The best way to avoid this is to have good guidelines in place or follow some type of methodology which will allow you to keep a track/tabs on both the quality that you are getting as well as testing constantly. Once you see the output, make sure you are getting the proper testing and testing cases performed so you know that what you paying for is up to the mark. The last thing you want is to have poor quality and an un-tested project which wastes both time and money which is a very bad thing of course. One of the best ways you can avoid this is to work with a company that has some methodology and testing standards in place which will give you the confidence that they can deliver what you are looking for. If you have specific guidelines or testing practices you like, ask the offshore provider what their views are on it to get a sense of things. Ensure that you are doing the necessary due diligence when choosing an offshore web development company so you are getting the best quality and fully tested/functional work to minimize any surprises or headaches.
Working with an offshore web development company can be a very lucrative and time-saving exercise if you are able to find a good company to work with. People sometimes only think about saving money when it comes to offshore software development which is the completely wrong mentality to have. You need to choose a provider that has a great balance of quality, competitive pricing, experience, the portfolio to back it up and so on. The more diligent you are, the more clear you are with your directions/goals, the more you know about what you expect at the end, the better communication/transparency you have, the better it will be from both a client’s perspective as well as an offshore web development companies perspective as well. Don’t rush into any decision when evaluating offshore software development providers and make sure you don’t make many of the common mistakes we discussed above. If you are able to find the right mix of things, it can be a beautiful and cost-effective relationship for all people involved. If you are looking for a reliable, trusted and experienced offshore web development company in India, please feel free to reach out to the team at Mind Digital for any of your development or digital marketing needs you have. If you have any other common mistakes which people can avoid, please feel free to add them below in the comments section.
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