What to look for in a nearshore outsourcing company
31st August 2014
The way we’ve been working for the last 7 years just became the new normal
As companies are forced to explore new ways of working, we look at the role nearshore outsourcing companies can play and what to look for in an outsourcing provider.
Nearshore development. How to make a success of outsourcing IT and software projects
Is your company considering outsourcing an IT or software project? Where are you looking? Local, nearshore or offshore? Will the chosen developer be working under your management or as an autonomous team working independently? Which members of your staff will be involved? How will the project be managed and progress measured?
The decisions you take in choosing a nearshore outsourcing provider will have a huge effect on the final outcome, and quite possibly the success, of your project. To help you make the right choice, here are some of the considerations we think are important.
The Covid effect
The dramatic events of 2020 have changed the way many companies are run, possibly forever. More of us are working from home. Teams are being managed and run remotely, while face-to-face meetings are pretty much a thing of the past.
Welcome to our world. At Secret Source we have spent almost a decade overcoming many of the same challenges companies are encountering in the wake of Covid-19. As a nearshore outsourcing company, we’re living proof that rather than holding a business back, the opportunities to redefine how your team work, even if you’re located on a small island in the middle of the Atlantic, can be hugely beneficial.
New working environments create new challenges for business
With less importance being placed on the physical location of staff, it’s no surprise that demand for nearshore outsourcing IT developers is spiking, as companies seek cost-effective alternatives to hiring new staff at a difficult time.
Our European development team are based in Las Palmas, on the island of Gran Canaria, but our coders come from all over the continent. English is the language we speak in our offices and all Secret Source project managers are native speakers. That’s a real help for any nearshore team who conduct most of their communications online.
We believe happy colleagues produce the best work. For us, that means attracting the best developers to come and write great code for our clients. We try to do that by basing our company culture on staff happiness. When the scope of a project allows, we’re happy for colleagues to work the hours that best suit their lifestyles, whether that’s at home, in our offices or a mixture of the two.
Seek to build long term relationships rather than searching for a quick fix
Even if you’re only outsourcing a single project, it’s worth remembering that great relationships take time to develop. Experience has taught us that occasionally things need a tweak. Maybe there’s a line of text that’s nagging your team, or you’ve found your audience has shifted slightly, Whatever the case, knowing you have the support of a long-term partner to put things right, or move things forward, is infinitely preferable to starting over.
On the subject of time, you may struggle to build a strong and lasting relationship with your outsourcing provider if they’re located on the other side of the world. The problem can become a real sticking point when outsourced workers need to collaborate with your staff, rather than working independently.
One reason British companies love working with Secret Source is that we share exactly the same time zone. Our clients know they can pick up the phone at any point during their regular working day and speak to a friendly voice, rather than having to schedule calls and sync calendars days in advance.
Working with a nearshore developer should not mean compromising on quality
There are two reasons for a company to outsource an IT or software project. To supplement their team or fill a gap in their skill set and to save money. Neither should be an excuse for compromise.
Why go to the trouble of outsourcing a project to a nearshore outsourcing company, if your own people could do it better? For that reason, it’s important to set clear goals and ensure you and your provider are on the same page, throughout the duration of the project.
For us, customer happiness is at the core of everything we do. Our English-speaking project managers are hand-picked for their patience and organisational skills. Expect them to take the time to really understand your goals, advise you on the right solutions and guide each project through to completion with the care it deserves.
We find it useful to employ the RAG scale, a popular and easy to understand project management system based on traffic lights, which provides an immediate way of identifying problems and potential problems. Having a reliable and transparent method for us all to track progress helps save our programmers time and our clients money, ensuring targets are met at every stage of the work.
A good nearshore outsourcing company should complement your team and help them do stuff better
Again, it’s easy to speak with hindsight, but our greatest successes have been the result of collaboration, rather than a more rigid one-off outsourcing model. When we partner with a client we strive to include them into one close-knit team, with their project manager, the devs working on their project and anyone else we need to call up from our highly-skilled pool of talent.
Experience has taught us that collective wisdom is exponentially better than the wisdom of the individual. Many of the companies we work with turn to us because they’re trying something new and do not have the skills in-house to create the necessary software or systems. Frequently, that involves a collaboration that continues after a project is completed, allowing our clients to dip in and out of our nearshore outsourcing bench, scaling up or down as required.
Another incredibly positive result of our collaborative approach is the transformational effect our dedicated teams have on the companies we work with. We take genuine pleasure in delighting our clients, sharing our knowledge and doing everything we can to make finished projects a success. For us, it certainly doesn’t end when your project goes live.
As more companies are forced to ‘work from home’ and embrace new technologies, the case for nearshore outsourcing IT and software development to nearshore developers has never been stronger. Not only does it cut costs and save time, it also solves the problem of finding and hiring the right people from a shrinking tech talent pool.
With over 30 of Europe’s finest programmers on our bench, Secret Source can provide dedicated teams for short term-projects or longer-term engagement.
For an informal chat, about filling the spaces in your company, give us a call on (+44) 0207 193 3739 or drop us an email at [email protected].