When you’re looking outside of your in-house team for your software development needs, it can be hard to know exactly where to start. Should you go with onshore, offshore, or nearshore developers? Is an integrated or independent approach a better fit for your company? How do you find the right team in the first place?

No matter which models and methods you choose, there are some important guidelines you can follow to keep the software development process moving and flowing. Here are some of the most important ones.


Do Specifically Define Requirements and Goals

It’s important for you to hammer out your specific requirements and overall goals for the project before you even begin the search for your development team. This will help you guide the process of finding the right fit. When evaluating software developers, outline these requirements and find out how they would ensure that they will meet them. Be sure to clearly articulate the objectives for the product.

You should also establish benchmarks along the way as a means of assessing progress. These checkpoints also serve as a way to make sure you and your outsourced partner are on the same page.

Do Search for a Team That’s Compatible Across the Board

You need a development team that’s compatible with yours in terms of culture, location, model, and other factors. Let’s take a closer look at the rationale behind these assessment points.

  • Culture: Your work styles should match, and your partner’s team should be proficient in English to ward off miscommunication.

  • Location: Choosing a nearshore developer has several advantages. For one, your time zones are better aligned than they are in the case of offshore development teams.

  • Model: Does the outsourcing team adhere to the same business model as your organization? This is important for the entire process because you want to make sure you align in terms of mission, way of assessing results, and more.

Do Communicate

Even though you’re not working on the same premises, you should make sure you and your partner are communicating regularly. Establish clear channels of communication from the beginning — whether through Zoom, Slack, and so on — and have a regular check-in time in addition to the informal collaboration. Be transparent about progress and goals, and encourage your outsourcing team to do the same.

Do Be Clear About Timeframes

In the discussions leading up to your contract, outline your timeframe for project completion and benchmarks. Make sure your partner is capable of meeting your time constraints, and if they believe that they aren’t realistic, explore their rationale. If they have considerable experience, they probably know what’s feasible. Add timeframes to your contract to have them nailed down and in writing.

Do Consider a Longer-Term Partnership

Even if your needs only include one project for now, always be thinking about the long term. If you work well with this vendor, you might consider doing so again in the future. This is something to take into accou