Combatting the Most Common Fears about Offshore Development
by Svitla Team
In the era of globalization, many IT companies delegate some of their jobs to overseas countries. Most obvious reasons include low-cost labor, less capital expenditures, broad range of available skills and state-of-the-art technologies. However, despite multiple obvious advantages that can be gained by going offshore, one may still hesitate with the final decision because of the possible risks.
Svitla Systems has been working as an IT outsourcing development provider for many years and learned various customers’ fears and myths firsthand. Today we will address all those fears and show that offshore outsourcing can be as reliable and dedicated as local contractors.
Fear#1. What if the contractor turns out to be an unfair partner?
This risk can be present in any partnership, be it with an offshore or a local partner. Whenever you plan to delegate any job to an outside partner, you should always choose the contractor carefully.
Solution: Check the offshore company’s reputation by asking for its clients’ recommendations and reviews, surf its website for successfully implemented projects, ask for its registration documents. Study the agreement carefully and receive full answers to all questions. Selecting a newly established offshore company may be not a good idea, while presence on the market for more than 5-7 years can signify a reliable partner.
Fear#2. What if I am not satisfied with the offshore team services?
Delegating a serious project to unknown people for long term may seem like a pig in a poke. The fear that your expectations may not coincide to reality is quite obvious and common.
Solution: To reduce the risk of the overseas team delivering low-quality work, try a pilot project first – delegate a small piece of work that can be quickly done. This way, you will see the quality of their services without committing much time and money. The staged model, also known as “Time and Material”, often leads to a better and deeper mutual understanding, as the contractor gains your trust and confidence step by step, until at some point you realize that you are ready to hire a bigger team for a bigger project.
Fear#3. Can the contractor protect my key confidential information?
Working with offshore teams that may have laws and cultural peculiarities other than accepted in your country may raise your fear about information safety.
Solution: Take all possible legal steps to protect your sensitive data. Check if there was any previous history of the offshore company leaking clients’ confidential information. Demand that all team members sing a Confidentiality Agreement. Being a long-term partner for numerous clients in the USA, Svitla Systems understands the importance of the confidentiality agreements and protects its client’s sensitive data as its own. We devote quite a bit of attention to the matter, while hiring staff for our clients.
Fear#4. What if I have some communication barriers with the team?
The idea of working with teams that are located on the other part of the world certainly raises questions of some cultural misunderstandings and language barriers. But generally this is hardly a problem.
Solution: As a rule, IT teams in Ukraine are specially oriented to English-speaking customers and have good language skills (speaking, listening and writing). Before the project starts, the preliminary communications with the management team (project manager, team leads, HR manager) on the offshore side will give you a full understanding if you are on the same page. Clearly communicating all your expectations at the beginning of the project will help you avoid any misunderstandings in the future. Furthermore, many of our developers travel to meet clients and their onsite teams to share knowledge and clarify mutual goals.
Fear#5. I don’t have an experience in guidance of the development team, can this be a problem?
Being a professional in your business, you may have no experience in working with software developers. But actually nobody expects this from you.
Solution: For easy and well-managed work, the offshore contractor will provide you with a Project Manager, who will be in charge of development and communication processes. So your stress connected with guiding the offshore team will be minimized.
Fear#6. Can a different time zone be a spoiler for effective development?
When starting a project, you face so many tasks, you may think that it would be rather difficult to manage both onshore and offshore teams located in different time zones.
Solution: We understand your concerns, and therefore many of our teams work during your working hours, always staying online. On the other hand, for many projects different time zones offer an even better opportunity to organize the non-stop development process: when the working day in the US is over, in Ukraine it is only about to start.
Whatever are your doubts about the offshore outsourcing, in our experience, they can be easily addressed by the open and honest answers. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – this is the key to long-term relationship and continued success.
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