There are many misconceptions that surround offshore development. The exponential growth of technology in the last years has manifested the need to deliver better IT products, faster. Some decide to go with the ‘internal growth’ route and start(ed) investing in talent to be housed internally while other thought it was best to also move large portions of their development to other companies to do the work for them. The benefits of this, have been described in earlier blog posts. Because of the explosive growth of this sector, some outsourcing projects have ended in failure carrying with it the misconceptions known today.
1) Poor quality of code
Due to the often lower wage costs of the developers, a first common misconception that people have is that the quality of the final product will be lower than in-house made code. Because of the deficiency of developers in Europe, many have wandered offshore looking for a new and more cost-effective way of developing new services. Often opting for the cheapest consultancy they could find resulting in a poor product in the end.
Cheaper doesn’t necessarily mean bad, just as expensive doesn’t inevitably means good. Wage prices are lower when working with outsourced development, resulting in a cheaper development process. But remember, that every country has good and bad workforces.
2) Communication and cultural barriers
Although there definitely are communicational, cultural and literal borders separating the developers from the client, one must not automatically reject the possibility of offshoring immediately. Communication isn’t as difficult as some might think. English is the standard language amongst all techies and due to the globalization of technology, social habits have become universal.
Far too often, people label time difference as a core factor of failure regarding outsourced work. While in fact, a simple tweak in office hours (not necessarily on both sides) can fix this issue if it even becomes one. And tell me that sending in a small task in the evening, and receiving it the morning when you wake up doesn’t just sound completely awesome?
3) An uncontrollable mess
Some people think of impossible management and uncontrollable prices when they think of outsourcing. And this has often been cited to be the leading factor of eventual failure in such projects. While this is without a doubt a considerable management task, it’s not impossible by any means. A firm but flexible schedule and some management tools or partners will help you take and keep control over the entire project.
I think it’s safe to say that the world of outsourcing doesn’t come without its challenges and dangers. But over the years, the market has become more stable and a new era of offshoring has started. One that still allows you to benefit without the risk.