In a digitalized world, tech talent unavailability is one of the most common bottlenecks for global market players. 87% of respondents that took part in the McKinsey research admitted that they either lack IT workforce or are about to experience a tech talent shortage in a few years. To fulfill the talent gap, American and Western European enterprises establish collaborations with engineering partners from abroad. 

However, choosing an engineering company that can build effective tailor-made software is challenging. Among many outsourcing vendors, you may struggle to find that particular company that will be able to lead your solution development from product discovery to the final release. In our article, we will highlight the key advantages of partnering with overseas IT providers as well as guide you through the company selection process.

How can custom software development benefit your business?

Nowadays most IT companies have both commercial packaged software and tailor-made solution development on their service list. Here is an overview of the main benefits you can get with custom software development:

1. Expert assistance with the product launch

The product discovery phase is one of the most important stages in the solution development process. The services provided at initial project stages may slightly differ between companies. For instance, at N-iX your outsourcing team helps you clarify potential challenges, formulate the project requirements, and set up the product development. Then, your remote specialists choose the technology stack depending on your project goals. When partnering with well-versed tech professionals, you will also get help with concept validation, prototyping, and proof of concept. 

2. Customized development approach

Tailor-made solution development presupposes that your software development partner works on your specific business needs. A need to automate manual processes and apply advanced analytics are common business requests that can be addressed with custom software development. With the help of data and analytics expertise, you can streamline workflows, reduce risks and errors, and enforce data-driven decision-making. 

3. Technological modernization of the solution

In case you want to upgrade your existing product to match the latest market tendencies, your engineering partner should support you with the required expertise. The team of experts can implement the advanced technologies, work on reducing the technical debt, and modernize the legacy solution. 

In addition, trusted vendors can provide guidance with the solution’s migration to microservices if needed. The microservice-based architecture will allow you to simplify your product management as well as broaden your project’s technology stack in the future. After the transition from a monolithic to a microservice architecture, you will also be able to painlessly implement, deploy, and scale each service separately.

4. Prompt aid for your project

Most engineering vendors offer audit and issue management services. Among the expertise areas of their specialists are code review, infrastructure analysis as well as team assessment. Moreover, remote engineers will help you create a roadmap for the project transition and a detailed plan of the solution’s further implementation and technical support.

Keep reading: Custom offshore software development services: why, how, and where to outsource

How to choose the right software development partner?

IT service providers around the globe greatly differ in size, expertise focus, and industry experience. We prepared a concise seven-step outsourcing guide that will answer the question of how to choose the right software development partner for your specific project.

1. Opt for a location with an extensive talent pool

The choice of destination for IT outsourcing is important in terms of tech talent availability. Look for software developers in locations with large talent pools—this way, you will be able to solve the workforce shortage issue within a short time period. One of the most popular locations to look for skilled engineers is Eastern Europe, with more than 1.1M specialists residing in the region. The total talent pool of Poland, Ukraine, and Romania counts over 980K ICT professionals. Around 45% of them are engineers involved in custom solution development for foreign enterprises, mainly from Western Europe and North America. Some other locations with considerable talent pools are Latin America and Asia. Therefore, selecting one of these destinations for your software development will ensure prompt team staffing.

2. Select midsize or large vendor

While choosing among many potential software development partners, opt for a midsize or large enterprise. Such vendors usually have access to a bigger number of workforce that allows you to launch the project almost immediately. At the same time, smaller vendors may not have enough HR capacity to scale your team within a short time period. 

3. Research available engagement models

Another important aspect of embarking on a partnership is a cooperation model that will cover your business needs to the maximum extent. It is preferable that your future software development partner can offer different engagement models to choose from. 

Engagement models can vary according to several factors, including the client’s control over the project and the way of pricing. Depending on these, we differentiate the Dedicated development team, the Time and Material, and the Fixed price models.

When choosing an engagement model, make a decision based on your project size, requirements flexibility, and budget capacity. For example, a fixed price model will work out for projects smaller in scope, while time and material and the dedicated development team models are preferable for long-term cooperation. 

Engagement models in IT outsourcing by delivery method

4. Evaluate the expertise of your potential software development partner

Before starting the cooperation, check out the available technological skillset of your potential outsourcing vendor. Depending on your project needs, research your future vendor’s expertise in data analytics, cloud development, Internet of Things, or DevOps. To help you make a reasonable choice, we listed key services related to the most common expertise branches:

Data analytics experts should be skilled in devising data and analytics strategies, data governance, as well as building data and analytics platforms. Some other required expertise areas for data analytics vendors include data science, AI, and ML. The most common tools your data analytics developers should have experience with are Apache Spark, Kafka, Hadoop, MongoDB, and many others.

In terms of cloud expertise, your potential software development partner should offer cloud adoption and migration, cloud optimization and automation, serverless computing, and other services. Among the popular tools used for cloud development are Google Cloud Platform, Kubernetes, Openstack, Amazon Redshift, and more. Cloud partnerships with Google and AWS will also be a considerable advantage.

As for the Internet of Things, look for tech specialists that have deep knowledge of hardware selection and prototyping, firmware and software development, and IoT implementation. In the case of IoT enterprises, the service list should preferably include the development of solutions for monitoring, predictive maintenance, and industrial automation. 

One of the main objectives of cooperation with the DevOps team is effective resource distribution and cost optimization. Check whether your DevOps specialists are well-versed in Infrastructure as a Code, infrastructure automation and orchestration, as well as incident and configuration management. In addition, DevOps experts can help you improve the quality of your product by implementing CI/CD practices. They also deal with infrastructure stability and security issues.

5. Check the company’s portfolio

Use Clutch, Goodfirms, and other rating platforms to read clients’ reviews and get a better understanding of the vendor’s service quality and domain experience. You may also read success stories on the company’s blog and watch the client testimonials. In addition, it will be a huge plus if your software development partner has a proven record of successfully delivered projects in similar industries to yours.

6. Assess the vendor’s cybersecurity guidelines

How to choose the right software development partner that will be able to ensure your sensitive information security? Research the company’s cybersecurity policies and guidelines. One of the main characteristics of a reliable vendor is compliance with international information security standards and regulations. The most well-known of them are GDPR, HIPAA, PCI DSS, ISO 27001:2013, and ISO 9001:2015. Moreover, make sure that your software development vendor has a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plan for any unplanned incidents and failures. 

Security-related compliances that distinguish a reliable vendor

Learn more: How to ensure secure software development in the time of remote

7. Pay attention to the legal aspects of the contract

Finally, thoroughly assess the terms of the cooperation agreement. Get clear on all the contract details, including code ownership, notice periods, and other important cooperation aspects. Pay attention to the liability and warranty clauses of the contract: they define the parties' responsibility areas and ensure the service quality. Furthermore, discuss possible risks and milestones in the scope of a contract to prevent any ambiguities in the long run. It is also crucial to agree upon the data protection rules that cover deidentification, reidentification, and anonymization of data.

Why opt for N-iX as your trustworthy software development partner?

  • N-iX is a reliable vendor with 21+ years of experience in software development for manufacturing, healthcare, telecommunications, retail, agritech, and other industries.
  • This global software development service company with offices and development centres across Europe and in the USA.
  • Our team constitutes 2,200+ well-versed engineers that offer help with cloud development, big data, business intelligence, Internet of Things, embedded systems implementation, enterprise VR production, and UI/UX design.
  • The company’s client list includes many international players such as Gogo, Currencycloud, PrettyLittleThing, Fluke, as well as many Fortune 500 vendors.
  • N-iX complies with international cybersecurity standards, namely, GDPR, PCI DSS, ISO 27001:2013, ISO 9001:2015, and more.
  • The vendor is well-recognized in the industry: N-iX has appeared in the IAOP Global Outsourcing 100 rating, listed in the Forrester Now Tech report, and was mentioned on the CRN Fast Growth 150 List.

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