What is IT development outsourcing?
IT development outsourcing: what does it mean? What are the advantages of using an external IT development provider? Find out what you need to know before opting for IT outsourcing: what the contract should include, as well as the specifications…
Definition of IT development outsourcing
In the course of running a business, it’s common for a company to realize that it does not have all of the fundamental skills to carry out an IT or web project. This can relate to both the hardware and equipment, as well as the required talent profiles. This is where the concept of IT outsourcing comes in.
In short, IT outsourcing amounts to delegating all or part of a company’s IT activities to an external service provider.
A contract will frame the relationship between an IT service provider and a company. The subcontractor performs an IT service on behalf of the principal, which generally the client company.
What are the advantages of IT outsourcing?
Advantage n° 1 – IT Budget Savings
Companies using IT or web development subcontractors quickly realize that it makes it easier for them to control and limit their expenses relating to IT and technology in general.
According to Syntec Informatique, the union of digital industry professionals and members of the Syntec Federation in France, using an IT service provider saves 20 to 30% in IT costs.
Advantage n° 2 – Be confident that the work is done by specialists
In recent years, the technical functions being handled by companies themselves are much more limited than before. New technologies and computing are evolving very rapidly. Software development is a sector that is highly sensitive to market dynamics and changes, and if not fully concentrated on, can become very complicated to navigate and keep up to date.
When you choose to subcontract your IT projects, you have the peace of mind of that you have an IT tool or system worthy of the name, produced by experts who know their business.
Advantage n° 3 – A guarantee of technical quality and agility
As you may have guessed, IT development outsourcing – when delegated to professionals – provides a guarantee of quality. The company opting to outsource can remain competitive and can afford to be agile and responsive.
Indeed, when development is carried out by experts, the chances are far slimmer that the final product will have technical problems or malfunctions.
What are the steps to start working with an IT subcontractor?
To explain the process in as simple a way as possible, below we break down the general steps involved in setting up a solid and healthy relationship with an IT service provider.
Step 1: Discovering the client’s needs
This step should not be rushed. Take your time in this first phase of discovery and exploration. It is a decisive part of the process and will define the rest of your collaboration.
This is the time to explain your needs to the subcontractor. Some of the different aspects you’ll discuss are:
- Business Context
- Your services and/or products
- Your problems and concerns
- Your short-term and long-term goals
- Your challenges
- Your budget
- Anything else that is important to the project
Ideally, at this point you will establish a specific, exact description – a list of specifications – of what you expect from your subcontractor.
What does a specification document provide?
The specification document lists all your requirements and expectations. The document can use different formats to cover the subjects as best as possible: graphics, images, text, technical drawings, models, etc.
Using the specifications document, you will define the scope of intervention for the subcontractor. This document will form a critical pillar in the provider’s understanding of what you want.
Step 2: Using the conclusions of the IT service provider
The service provider will then have to perform an audit of your current IT system, applications and other IT tools. After having carried out this analysis and audit work, they will be able to issue their conclusions and tell you if they can respond to your requests – and in what context they will be able to do so.
It’s at this point that the two parties will jointly draw up a common set of specifications relative to the project, and which will serve as a reference point and support for drafting the contract.
What should the contract that I sign with my IT subcontractor contain?
To establish a proper contract with your IT development service provider, your contract must contain specific data such as:
- The type of tasks you will delegate to the provider.
- The expected results.
- A precise description with regard to the security and protection of the data being handled.
- Backup plans.
- The modalities of execution.
- The desired response times.
- The price.
Also insert a confidentiality clause. This clause will commit the service provider to maintaining the secrecy of all information and data they use and encounter. This is called a duty of service.
Definition of offshore IT development outsourcing
Another alternative is offshore IT development outsourcing. This is quite simply web development that is not carried out in the same country you are located in, but in a foreign country where development costs are lower than in the west.
By using a European company specialized in outsourcing offshore development, your company will save a lot of money and can integrate many more features than expected in, for example, your web application project. You can go much further with less resources.
Highly skilled IT talent pools exist in Madagascar, Mauritius and Vietnam. The advantage is that you can work with these teams without too much of a time difference.
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