Location Factors To Consider While Choosing An Offshore Development Partner

Outsourcing software development is quite a common practice in today’s progressive information technology industry. The demand for high-quality yet cheap software development services has led to the mushrooming of offshore development companies all over the world, especially in countries where labor cost is low and the number of skilled personnel is high. An offshore software development company, located far away from the outsourcer, often in a different country, provides services at a low cost. But, these outsourcing companies ensure high-quality, timely outputs at the same time. This makes offshore development a desirable option for many medium and large-sized IT companies based out of developed countries. When it comes to the most lucrative countries for offshore software development, China, India and the Philippines top the list of Asian countries. The list of the most popular countries for offshore software development in Eastern Europe comprises Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, and Romania.

However, picking the ideal development partner, from the wide array, is not an easy task. To avoid any future inconveniences and frustrations, the outsourcer needs to understand his/her business’s requirements, strengths, and weaknesses, and set goals accordingly. Besides, he/she should consider certain key aspects before selecting a software outsourcing company and committing to a partnership. Outsourcers often, primarily, look for financial gains or cost savings, while contracting out services, but what needs to be kept in mind is that partnering with a software development company just because it is offering the service at a considerably low price, can turn out to be unfavorable for the business over time. Contracting out IT-related services to offshore software development often involves multiple factors and impacts not just development costs, but also employee communication, logistics and working culture. Among many, location is considered the most crucial factor, when it comes to selecting a remote partner. Hence, it is always advisable to get a clear idea about the consequences, location can have on the productivity and efficiency of the offshore software development team. 

6 Primary Location Factors To Consider:

      • Cost Of Living
        The cost of living, in the area the offshore development partner is located, decides the price of the outsourced service. For example, the remote partner located in China will charge differently from the one based out of India. This is because of the distinctive living costs of the two countries. In countries where the development costs are low but living costs are high, the output quality offered by the companies, located in those countries, can be dubious. 
      • Language
        One of the primary components of the standard offshore development relationship is language. It is extremely important to make sure there is no language barrier between the outsourcer and the outsourcing company to ensure effective communications and eliminate chances of misunderstandings or misinterpretation. When IT-related services get outsourced to an external firm, many technical and highly nuanced conversations take place between the in-house and outsourced development teams. Hence, it is advisable to evaluate the language skills of the selected offshore development company, before partnering with it. This is because language barriers can lead to miscommunications, which can severely impact the delivery and the quality of the outputs. 
      • Time Zones
        An outsourcer must consider and evaluate the time zone in which the remote partner works. Also, the outsourcer needs to understand if the outsourcing company’s working hours overlap with his. This will help the outsourcer to comprehend both the conveniences and inconveniences the partnership can lead to. In some cases, where the clients are capable of preparing work throughout the day for the outsourced teams to go ahead, in the case they arrive late, a small time zone overlap often turns out to be advantageous. On one hand, this scenario creates a 24-hour team that can ensure high-speed output delivery. On the other hand, a minimal working hour overlap can develop a risk that the team will not have access, which is often required to solve various queries. Hence, time zone variation, in the case of offshore development, can turn out to be a significant logistical challenge, if not analyzed properly before partnering with an offshore software development company.
      • Technical Lineage
        Certain countries, with infrastructures designed specifically to nurture technical talents or engineers, are known to have technical expertise over others. These countries have earned a global reputation for technological excellence, by constantly developing and improving their workers’ profiles. 
      • Country Culture
        Cultural differences between the offshore development company and its clients often impact the relationship as well as the success of a project. Hence, before entering into a partnership, a company must always evaluate its cultural compatibility with the offshore development firm, to avoid any possible cultural conflicts in the future.  
      • Travel Access
        As an offshore development team sits at a remote location and is often unsupervised, the client sometimes feels the need to visit the office of the outsourcing company, to look over the development team. Hence, accessibility is considered a significant factor, when it comes to choosing an offshore software development partner. The elements that influence logistical accessibility are the availability of direct flights, the outsourcing company’s proximity to airports, travelling time and cost.

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