Outsourcing your software development, similar to choosing your app marketing provider, is a serious decision. No matter be it a big company or a young startup. Browsing through the internet and checking multiple websites you will see very similar descriptions of 1000+ software development outsourcing companies all around the world providing outsourcing software development services. And for sure doing your own research you will have to go through a few rounds of filtering those companies. In this article we will outline some points which will help you to select a reliable outsourcing software development company and will mention important details you should pay attention to.
Spend some time and describe the main idea and long-term perspectives for your potential software development partner. Also describe short-term tasks which you are planning to start with. Mention technological stack, important personal details, tell about your expectations and probably ask some questions.
Getting a detailed request from the customer a reliable software development company or even a developer, both, if they are serious about working with you will also spend their time providing you detailed answers and describing why do they suit. Usually, at this stage you would receive a detailed email with answers to your questions and maybe some presentations or case studies included. In few cases, the company can provide you with a detailed proposal.
Another important thing when you got your detailed answer via email is a scheduled intro call with a representative of the outsourcing company or a freelance developer. As the outsourcing community itself has a “default disadvantage” when you are located in different countries and time zones, the practice shows that establishing personal contact during the intro call is extremely important. Skype, Slack, Zoom and multiple other software tools provide us with a possibility to have a video call.
During the call pay attention to where the representative is sitting, is he in the office or at home? Do you feel comfortable talking to this person, how he describes the team you would be working with, does he answer your questions in details regarding the working process, previous projects and so on?
Especially if you only start working with a company, you should pay attention to the documents they propose to sign. Sometimes there are “fake companies” which will propose you to provide them with an advance payment without signing any documents or signing “fake documents”. Also, it is strange when the company accepts to sign your contract without any even small amendments.
In most countries there are websites where you can check whether the company exists, also, if you feel not 100% sure, ask for a conversation with their legal assistant. If the company is a fake one - most likely they won’t have a legal assistant at all.
Always remember, well done documentation from the very beginning will guarantee fulfillment of the agreement and your rights for the source code of the developed software.
Always ask about maintenance of the software after the development. Usually customers are so concentrated on the launch of the project, especially, startups, that they do not even think about necessity of maintenance of the software after.
Reliable outsourcing software development company should provide post maintenance after the launch. It could be free for the first few weeks or a month further per charge, might be only per charge, however, the company which is ok to be responsible for the work done would be a reliable one.
Check not only social networks of the outsourcing company, but also their own website. A reliable software development outsourcing company would always keep their own website updated, well-versed and mobile responsive, as this is their digital vitrine, which forms the first impression of each customer.
If can see typos and layout problems on the website of the outscoring company, this is not a good sign and probably you should proceed looking further for a company to cooperate with.
Even not being a professional in the software development, you should be always provided with a possibly to track how your development process is going on. Companies which will reject to share their management tools to show how the work is progressing should not be considered as reliable.
Usually, you would be provided with access to Jira, Trello or any other management tool where you would see tasks which are already in progress, in to do column, in resolved, ready for testing, merged and other columns.
And the last well-known point which for many customers till now stays as the main reliability sign are good reviews of previous customers. Here we can only add that while checking reviews try to pay attention to good and bad reviews. Unfortunately, many companies do fake reviews, publishing them from fake Gmail or linked accounts. So, reading reviews, try to find the platform where reviews are collected via third party or via a phone call, for example. Or simply check linked accounts of people who left reviews.
Yulia Koroleva, Chief Business Development Officer at Code Inspiration. 9 years working in B2B segment. Actively supporting digital startups in forming the technology strategy for their products.