IT projects they differ from project to project, but successful ones have one thing in common: carefully devised management strategies for nearshore outsourcing software development.
In addition to maximizing productivity and reducing time to market, proper management provides optimal resource allocation and efficiency. When organizations outsource, the top reason they do so is to reduce costs.
The first step in any management strategy is choosing an outsourcing model that will make it easy for you to stay on top of things as a project manager. Generally, you can control outsourced developers the best possible way with an extended or dedicated team model, and you are aware of their activities at all times.
In addition, managing outsourced software development involves much more than just developing software.
A successful dedicated team requires critical considerations that we will explore in this article. Here are some tips on getting the most out of your outsourcing relationship.
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How to manage your outsourced teams: 5 tried-and-true tips
We've built successful working relationships with 20+ clients at Framework Science, some lasting more than five years.
Our experiences have taught us how to manage outsourced software development teams the hard way, so you don't have to. Outsourced development teams need to be appropriately managed. Here are some dos and don'ts:
Make sure you communicate your plans well and frequently.
The project manager's most important tool is clear and compelling communication.
It's essential to frame the big picture (rather than focusing on individual tasks and short-term goals) to remote team members, which is often overlooked. Like your company's in-house employees, you want to provide ample context. Outsourcing teams will understand your project needs and expectations for the relationship.
Below is some crucial information you should share:
- Describe the scope and goals of the project
- Describe any related long-term projects
- Key performance indicators (KPIs)
- Your short-, medium-, and long-term business goals
Communicating frequently and regularly is crucial for getting everyone on the same page. You should include your outsourced developers in all communication channels, meetings, and standups with your in-house team.
Explain your workflows and best practices in detail.
For effective communication to take place, the dedicated team must be introduced to all internal resources and workflows they will need, including:
- The technology stack
- Tools and processes for programming
- Environment post-production
- Programming best practices
- Describe the design patterns your teams use
- internally to document and self-learn
When explaining your software development process, it is best to err on the side of over-explaining. Even if your outsourced engineers are from a neighboring country like Mexico, there may be differences in work styles between your in-house and remote teams.
Facilitate Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing
A significant advantage of outsourcing is the ability to collaborate. You can deliver high-quality solutions faster and at lower costs with in-house and remote teams.
To create a culture of collaboration among developers, you can:
- Host events for the entire team and individual developers
- Knowledge-disseminating sessions
- XP Extreme programming
- Peer evaluations
- Frequent developer meetings
- Frequent feedback loops
A dedicated repository or communication channel should also be established where internal and external teams can access educational materials.
Utilize Outsourcing Partners' Support Structures
Outsourcing software development companies may offer support services to help their clients maximize their business growth through outsourcing.
For instance, at Framework Science, you are assigned a personal account manager who is available to you to answer any questions, address any concerns, facilitate communication, and track feedback. In addition, we give all our clients access to the industry's first Remote Dev Team Management System for absolute proactive Governance [Total Transparency and Accountability]
You should use the vendor's similar services if yours are offered to ensure a mutually beneficial and productive long-term relationship.
Read Nearshore Americas post
How Remote Dev Team Management Systems Help Companies Tap Mexico’s Talent
Manage remote developers as part of your internal team.
It is far more likely that dedicated team members will become personally invested in your business success and assist you in achieving your strategic goals when they feel welcomed and cherished.
A sense of belonging is vital in companies with large numbers of remote workers, which can sometimes feel impersonal. A central communication and delivery platform like Teamstation.dev will help you avoid this by promoting collaboration, continuous communication, and an inclusive environment.
Finding the Right Outsourcing Partner
Selecting the right partner means you do not have to manage Nearshore outsourced software development teams alone.
These tips will help you find a vendor you can depend on if you're in this stage of your outsourcing journey:
Determine which outsourcing model is suitable for you
Offshoring is often one of the most affordable options for companies in Western Europe and North America. Onshoring is the most expensive, and nearshoring lies somewhere in between [Except it offers the most ROI by comparison]. Offshoring works best for more straightforward projects that don't need much oversight. Onshoring and nearshoring are ideal for complex, long-term projects that require close cooperation with your internal teams.
Establish a shortlist of vendors eligible for your project.
You can narrow your choices using LinkedIn and Glassdoor to find 5-10 options that seem to be a good fit based on your professional network. Check for experience in a related field, case studies or success stories, awards and certifications, and ratings from clients and employees.
Conduct interviews with the best candidates.
Among the most important questions to ask include whether the company has worked on similar software projects in the past and whether they can (and are willing to) customize their services to fit your business needs. Furthermore, you want to ensure the development team you hire is proficient in the field. Pay attention to the payment structure, and total transparency on engineering salaries vendors pay compared to billing costs.
Choose the best fit and build lasting symbiotic relationships.
When you are ready, choose a partner who can offer you technical expertise and cultural fit, as well as flexibility and cooperation. Then, put enough time and effort into building a successful relationship.
Best ROI with much lower risk utilizing a modern model like Framework Science: [Accessing first-ever Remote Dev Teams Management System in the market]
Managing nearshore outsourced teams shouldn't take time and attention away from higher-value work. You have more important things on your plate, such as winning more market share, with the help of our advanced capability that enables a flexible and pivotal strategy ahead of your competition.
Go Beyond Digital Transformation with A Scientific Framework of Software Engineering Certainty, Continuity, and Predictability.
We currently manage 30+ dedicated nearshore software development teams of the top engineering mavens for our U.S. clients.
At Framework Science, we've cracked the code to meet the exponential rate technology needs to be brought to market with advanced automated processes and long-lasting relationships with the people doing the right things at the right time.
To get started, check out our dedicated development teams service.