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Why software outsourcing can be suitable for building complex business applicationsAugust 24, 2023
Software outsourcing in Australia has taken off for more reasons than mere cost savings and convenience; it has also afforded numerous international companies the opportunity to access some of the finest talents for building their software applications. As businesses compete across marketplaces where customers are spoilt for choice, being able to scale while saving on costs is a challenge that is tough yet highly essential at the same time.
Software companies in Australia have been known to be nimble in the face of ever-changing challenges, as well as offering the leverage that clients need in order to stay within their own budgets. With budding trends such as AI, workflow automation and even chatbots dominating the digital landscape of today, it is imperative to have a software development partner that can be adaptive enough in the face of both company challenges, as well as meet ever-changing customer demands along the way.
With highly experienced teams custom-recruited to suit even the most niche requirements, software development companies in Australia are now a well-established market for any kind of software outsourcing, thanks to consistent delivery, affordability and the constant drive to adopt new technologies into the trade. Add to this the potential of outsourcing more operations, such as accounting, customer service and administration, and your business can establish an entire hub in the island nation for effective yet budget-friendly performance.
It takes time to build a reputation, of course, and the same rings true even for software outsourcing companies. At EFutures, we specialise in software development, while catering to software outsourcing needs for businesses all around the world. With our experienced talent pools and the added flexibility of customisation, our teams are skilled to take on unique requirements, while offering your business the leverage it deserves to focus on tasks that require your undivided attention.
In this article, we dive deep into everything you need to know about software outsourcing, and how it can help your business stand out from the competition in a fast-paced market.
What is software outsourcing?
Software outsourcing, as its name suggests, offers companies the possibility to transfer all responsibilities related to building custom software to a third-party agency that is specialised in the very same. Although software outsourcing is most commonly associated with transferring software development responsibilities to an agency that is located outside the country a business operates in, any external contractor, irrespective of where they may be located, can count. Known better as nearshoring in this case, many businesses are now opting for this as it can provide them with the convenience to visit the agency in person whenever needed, as opposed to only depending on virtual collaboration.
A software outsourcing partner is chosen based on a variety of factors that go beyond mere cost savings and good talent. Depending on your business’s unique requirements, you may need an agency that is geographically closer to your company headquarters, or even a specific brand operation. Additionally, soft skills are a highly important factor to determine whether the agency of your choice is a good fit for your business, as language barriers, time zones as well as the style and frequency of communication can make or break a long-term partnership between business and software agency.
What are the benefits of software outsourcing?
Reduce cost and maximise savings
Cost savings is the biggest advantage of software outsourcing, without a doubt. Subsequently, this has also been the biggest driver for companies to invest in software outsourcing, thereby making it a crucial influencer for even the smallest of outsourcing endeavours. While currency exchange rates can be an instant means of paying less for the same services you would otherwise have to pay for in your own region, costs can be further decreased in a variety of other ways as well.
For one, using cloud computing can be a major source of cost reduction, since pay-as-you-go pricing models enable software development agencies to pay only for services rendered on your behalf. This can either be for reserving only necessary virtual resources (and scaling down if ever needed) or paying only when an event is triggered through an action or series of actions. Add to this the value derived by hiring world-class talent, and you’ve got a software outsourcing model that works both for your software needs, as well as your budget.
Scale with minimal commitment
With software outsourcing, your business is spared from the hassle of hiring and maintaining an in-house team. All processes, including salaries and other benefits administered, are taken care of by the software outsourcing agency, so your business teams can best focus only on what matters – supervising the construction of great software while building the right strategies together with project managers and product owners.
All your business needs to specify is the goals, requirements and any challenges that you are looking to address, and the right software outsourcing partner will do the needful in sourcing talent that is best suited to meet your needs. The level of commitment that hired resources provides can also be scaled depending on seasonal demand, customer preferences and overall level of growth. In other words, while resources can be hired as dedicated team members that are only obliged to serve your business needs, feel free to opt for shared team members so you only pay for services that you actually use.
Access the best talent without geographical constraints
Software outsourcing and remote work environments, when combined, have made it wonderfully possible for businesses to avail the finest talent, irrespective of where experts may be located in the world. Previously, building in-house teams meant that only designers, developers, testers and other specialists based within the region could be successfully hired. For companies that did have the wherewithal to go beyond regional boundaries, this still called for relocation expenses as well as possible immigration formalities.
Thanks to software outsourcing, such constraints have been drastically reduced, if not completely alleviated. Therefore, this further empowers businesses to offer the best software applications to their respective markets, especially in the wake of rapidly shifting customer demands across a widely competitive business environment.
The best tools for software outsourcing
Cloud-based project management software
SaaS project management tools are a key component for any software outsourcing project today. Also a major component for virtual collaboration in general, hosted project management software is a necessity to build roadmaps, assign tasks and convey important updates to specific team members, or the entire group at large. Employ simple Kanban boards to move individual tasks through a pipeline, or use complex Gantt chart visualisations to combine multiple (and often, distributed teams) into a centralised dashboard where team members know what their own deadlines are, as well as provide a glimpse of what others are working on.
AI-powered recommendations and automation
As AI has rapidly proliferated across every aspect of the digital realm, remote collaboration has also experienced a significant lift in terms of how teams share data, communicate ideas and deliver on their daily goals. Leading SaaS project management, task management and collaboration tools offer inbuilt AI capabilities that can track user behaviour to identify trends, and thereby make intelligent recommendations to automate certain repetitive tasks – or take full charge and automate them instantly, all together.
Workflow automation is another leading feature in most leading project management tools today, which also function with AI and machine learning algorithms predicting future tasks and processes in the interest of automating them well ahead in advance. However, workflow automation is also versatile enough to function with pre-set rules and policies, so users can drag-and-drop sequences in a zero-code interface to automate necessary tasks for improving overall productivity across their own work environments, as well as across entire teams.
Cloud computing forms the base for all software outsourcing today, ranging from virtual infrastructure to SaaS collaboration tools. While leading cloud service providers such as AWS and Microsoft Azure offer everything a software development team needs under one roof, APIs ensure that most third-party tools can be integrated to facilitate seamless flows of data, and thereby eliminate data silos.
Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions are incredibly adept at offering development teams the environment they need to build code on the cloud, while also offering low-code functionalities in some cases. Additionally, bundled tools such as Google Workspace and Microsoft Office empower software development teams to seldom depend on any third-party applications for collaboration, thereby using a single cloud provider source for all their needs.
Software outsourcing: how to start and things to consider
Always begin with an assessment
As with any software development endeavour, it is of utmost importance to do a detailed assessment of the challenges your business currently faces, along with goals that need to be met. This is especially crucial if your business is embarking on software outsourcing for the first time. For businesses that currently engage in software outsourcing, assessing your business regularly either as part of an existing standup schedule or with a dedicated strategy session can help teams identify any emerging problems and rectify them before they escalate.
In order to conduct a business assessment, gather relevant team members across the hierarchy, which includes both executive leadership as well as end users of the software that is being built. Get a conversation going by encouraging team members to share the challenges, bottlenecks and obstacles they face when it comes to completing tasks, meeting deadlines and delivering targets. Gather all this feedback into a brief, and share it with your software development team so they can integrate relevant functionalities and workflows to alleviate these business pains and meet objectives better.
Soft skills are more important than you think
Differences in language, accents, styles of communication as well as time zones could be a hindrance to software outsourcing. However, if problems are identified (especially early on) and rectified, software outsourcing can promise a long-term and possibly permanent partnership that is productive and lucrative, between business and agency. In the early stages, it is crucial for businesses to gauge whether ideas and feedback that are communicated are being added into roadmaps and being promptly followed up on, by software outsourcing teams.
If one or both of these actions are lacking, product owners need to express the same and monitor whether any improvements happen. If your software outsourcing agency is able to adapt, it is certainly a promising sign. If not, you may need to reconsider your agency partner in the interest of building quality software applications that are aligned with your business goals.
Iterate as you go
A Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is always a great starting point for any software application, and the same applies to software outsourcing as well. Narrow down your list of functionalities that are most important for users to perform an action, depending on your call-to-action. Upon generating user-driven feedback and analysing what was liked and disliked, your software development team can iterate your product with customer-centric features in mind, thereby enabling better customer satisfaction, while reducing task overload for teams, as well as unwanted features within your application.
Software outsourcing can be a highly productive partnership between a business and the agency that offers it, to build applications that meet key business goals, while effectively retaining customers and generating steady revenue. However, it needs to be done right, so that businesses can avail cost savings and retention of the best talent, in the long term.
Through collaborative virtual platforms such as hosted project management, video conferencing and coding environments, software development teams can obtain all the resources they need to build powerful apps in the cloud, and without having to rely on any on-site infrastructure. Companies that specialise in software outsourcing need to further enhance their repertoire by systematically sourcing the right talent on behalf of their clientele, while honing the soft skills needed to work with businesses from around the world, by meeting their niche requirements.
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