Startups
Kamil Ferens
Kamil Ferens
Head of Growth
2021-08-19

Best Practices When Cooperating with a Software Development Company [Updated]

Outsourcing to product development companies can give you lots of positives, such as an immediate boost of human resources and expertise from real professionals. What if I told you that you can benefit from that cooperation even more? By developing a product together with a software house, you can achieve many business goals.

This arrangement translates into accelerating development time, reducing costs and increasing the quality of software. However, for your cooperation to be fruitful, you need to remember a few important rules. They will help you cooperate more efficiently and profit from such a partnership.

Why does cooperating with software development companies have so many benefits?

The cooperation with any software development company has lots of pros and cons, but in my opinion the advantages definitely outweigh the difficulties. There are plenty of figures available online that show the effectiveness of this software development path. First of all, you need to pay attention to cost-effectiveness. It is estimated that entrusting product development to qualified software house developers can save up to 59% of the budget. Software quality is also increasing. We're talking about up to 31% of cases.

There is also another fact worth mentioning. As the CEO, CTO or the person responsible for product development, you can save your time and engage in other activities thanks to the cooperation with a software development company. You don't have to waste your time on creating an in-house team and worry about several other pitfalls that can occur during the process. It's simple - find an effective software house that will take over many difficult and time-consuming tasks. In that way, you will mainly supervise the workflow. You can also arrange periodic meetings to learn more about the progress of the project and then propose some suggestions if needed.

Effective way to cooperate with a software house

I assume that you have already chosen a software development company to cooperate with, or you are already working together. I believe that from your (so the client's) perspective, organizing and planning your work is extremely crucial. Based on my experience, observations and conversations with CEOs, CTOs and Product Owners, I have listed some of the most important principles of cooperating with a software development company you might want to know about.

1. Always set your goals

The product vision and goals should be your mutual aim. So, make sure that the development team knows all of the assumptions thoroughly and, what's even more crucial, knows how to achieve them. I cannot express enough how crucial and valuable it is to set goals related to delivering value to the user (software quality) as well as budget and time goals. If you are willing to fulfill those aspects, I’m sure that you are destined for high efficiency and success.

2. Establish team roles and project management methodology

To capably manage the process, you want to make sure that each project members know their role and responsibilities. What is more, you also need an effective approach to project management. Agile and the very popular Scrum may be helpful here. Such work models will ensure a clear team structure and higher efficiency. Further, it is good practice for the software development company to have one person that can be contacted by a customer. In turn, the client’s side also appoints a person who will contact the programming team, monitor the course of work and determine further development directions. It does not have to be a CTO, it can also be a person with a different position, such as the Product Owner.

3. Select communication channels

This aspect is also key for establishing the right flow of cooperation. Daily contact must be as simple and accessible as possible for both parties, so it is best to use the generally available tools. Which ones? This is a matter of individual preferences. At The Codest, we prefer Jira for project management and Slack for ongoing communication. However, there are many possibilities.

4. Plan your MVP

This section applies to projects that are created from scratch. Cooperation with a software development company is particularly profitable in such cases. Why? First of all, a software development company can provide you with developers and professionals who are familiar with various technologies and experienced in many projects. This means that they have sufficient knowledge to create a high-quality product also for you. In addition, MVP allows you to create a product prototype in a relatively short time. This way you will not have to spend an entire budget on crafting something that won’t sell and/or be useful to your targeted group. MVP simply pays off.

5. Trust and partnership

Choose the right software development company and just trust them. Excessive control over projects may have adverse effects. Clients would often interfere with the work of developers and try to modernize it in several ways without having proper expertise on a certain technology. I know a lot of situations where the customer thinks that particular product functionalities can be created very quickly, while developers actually need a lot of time to properly code them. The customer must understand and accept these things. Trust and partnership are very important during such cooperation.

6. Communicate!

There is nothing more important than establishing the right working relation between the client and software development company. We simply want our clients to trust us and know they are not hesitant to speak their mind and give us some suggestions. Keep in mind the more we know about your vision of the product, the better we work!

Conclusions

Finally, I would like to draw your attention to a current trend. Note how many companies on the market use the services of software development companies. This is a constantly growing phenomenon. It applies not only to large companies, but also start-ups, for which it is a very beneficial choice (mainly due to the insufficient technical knowledge of the start-up team and general cost-effectiveness). Most importantly, starting your cooperation with a software development company is trouble-free at every stage of your product's development – regardless of whether it is yet to be created or already launched on the market.

Digital product development consulting

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