Whether you own a startup or are just a greenhorn, you must have thought about outsourcing your website development project. The reasons can be many. There can be budgetary constraints, reduced talent pool, or a huge development backlog.
In all fairness, outsourcing can address these issues in a cost-effective manner. However, there are some potential risks and operational challenges associated with website development outsourcing. You should be aware of them before going forward. Otherwise, you might have to deal with unnecessary iterations or inconsistencies in the product. All this can greatly delay the development process.
So to evade such a scenario, let’s see what are those risks and challenges.
1. A proper development process may not be followed
Before starting out any project, it’s good to have an outline of the website development process. A well-structured process makes the work of a developer a lot more organized. It also speeds up your project’s realization.
But due to the remote nature of outsourcing, such a process may not be followed for your project. Following are the crucial steps that may end up getting skipped:
- SRS documentation: SRS (Software Requirements Specifications) documents the functional as well as non-functional requirements of the project. The purpose of SRS is to document the goals and parameters of the project. It contains information on the project’s target audience, user interface, hardware and software requirements.
- Wireframing: This step is extremely essential to designing a website or mobile app. Based on the information gathered in the planning phase, a visual layout of the website is designed using a wireframe. Many online-tools like Balsamiq, Axure, or Pencil Evolus can be availed in this regard. However, if you are outsourcing your website development project, wireframing and prototyping might be skipped. This is usually done to avoid iterations and speed up the development process.
- Prototyping: In this step, a prototype is made using tools like Invision App or Flinto. It is an interactive version of the wireframe and resembles the final product.
2. The absence of a dedicated Testing Team
If you are outsourcing your project, a dedicated testing team might not be there.
So what does that imply? It implies that a web developer will test his or her own code. This practice is generally problematic, but why?
Let’s take an example. Just think of an artist who has created a sculpture. If someone asks him to find flaws in that sculpture, do you think he can find flaws in his own creation? Probably not.
Same goes for developers. They think about the features and design of an application, and they write a code. While doing this, they keep certain number of possibilities in mind.
So what happens when you ask them to test their own application? They check only for those possibilities and don’t think beyond them. This is why they end up missing out on many defects.
What is the result of that? They develop half-baked products that don’t have useful functionalities for users.
We are certain that this isn’t something you would want for your project. So for it to be successful, you need a dedicated team of testers.
3. There are chances for deception
Behind the decision to outsource your webs development project, there is a temptation to hire developers at a cheaper cost. This is where the risks lie. You might believe that you are hiring the best coders at $8/hr or $10/hr. But this is not the case at all. At such low rates, it’s quite possible that some junior developers handle your project. Such developers don’t have their reputation at stake. They use big projects for learning purposes and they have nothing to lose.
You definitely don’t want your project to become a stepping stone for a junior developer, or do you?
4. Promises require your caution
With outsourcing, there is always a risk of false promises being made. For instance, in the beginning, your project will be assigned an experienced coder. But during the development phase, he or she might get replaced with a junior coder without you knowing it.
The worst part is, if you aren’t a developer yourself, you won’t be able to differentiate between the junior coder’s and the experienced coder’s work. In other words, you won’t be able to distinguish between a half-baked and a robust code. Your project will suffer greatly because of that.
Therefore you should take into consideration the time of delivery and project cost. If you find them too good to be true, then don’t test your luck, as in 99.99 % cases it won’t be true.
5. Data Security might get compromised
Your company’s data security is another concern when you go for outsourcing. It’s risky to share sensitive information with someone who is working remotely. Therefore, you should meticulously select your outsourcing partner. You should ensure that your potential partner is certified by a reputable organization. You can also refer to your partner’s case studies, to see how it has handled sensitive information before.
With website development outsourcing, it’s always difficult to find a team that can align with the vision or goals of your product. You need to emphasize on the bigger picture, proper planning, and effective communication. Then only you can turn your outsourced project into a success story. Having said that, it’s a lot of hard work for sure.
Outsourcing is a riskier route, but still, it can give you productive results. You just need to ensure that due processes are implemented. By doing so, you can cut costs, improve the delivery speed, and help your internal team to focus on other critical issues.
We hope after going through this write-up, you will be better prepared. If you want to build a high-performance website for your business, then you should look for an efficient website development company to anchor your project.