How to Outsource Web Development? Tips and Tricks for Successful Cooperation

Feb 24, 2020·15 min read

Ever wonder how web development outsourcing can upgrade your business? Take a look at the benefits of outsourcing for your business, find out how to start a collaboration with the experienced tech team, and get a chance to save your time, money, and energy.

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Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work. Delegate your job properly, and you’ll save your time, money, and energy.

Website development outsourcing is one of the most important topics discussed among modern entrepreneurs on their path to success. How do you start it painlessly? How do you manage it properly? And why even do that when it’s possible to hire skilled engineers to work with you shoulder to shoulder?

On average, it takes 50+ days to hire a skilled software engineer in the United States and Canada. That means 50+ days devoted to intense recruitment, time-consuming interviews, and process analysis. 50+ days you could use to launch a small but viable MVP! Now, let’s imagine you cut this time spent by 10 times, or one workweek, to hire an entire team of engineers that will amaze you with their skill set. This can be a reality. This is what web development outsourcing brings you.

Four gifts you get if you outsource web development

94% of Fortune 500 companies use outsourcing for their needs.

  • Enterprise legends, like Google, Samsung, Lufthansa Systems, Chrysler, and hundreds of similar enterprises, use the perks of web development outsourcing to expedite their growth.
  • Startups are no exception: web outsourcing gives them much more scalability and flexibility than hiring an in-house team. Besides, there’s a chance to cut costs considerably. For example, Groove, a SaaS platform, outsourced their entire software development to a company overseas. But it didn’t interfere with the company's success; now, it is a successful business with millions of dollars of revenue.

If you still have some doubts or concerns about web development outsourcing for your particular case, take a look at these top facts about how your business will win with the outsourcing method:

Benefits of web development outsorucing

Again, that’s the way to save money

Unilever, a large European consumer goods company, once outsourced its ERP system development to the experts in this field. The company wasn’t able to dedicate enough resources to build a complex solution in-house from scratch; thus, delegating was a viable and necessary option. In terms of operational activities, this step helped to save $700 million annually.

Interested in how it works? Let’s dive into the financial aspects.

Everyone’s talking about how cheap it is to outsource web design and development, but they rarely provide reasons for that. To clarify the financial aspect for you, we present here a brief comparison between the investment required for an on-site development team and outsourcing development tasks to other experts.

You don’t need to waste your money on office needs or recruitment; you pay less for the engineering services of the same quality. We’ll dive deeper into salaries in different regions a bit later.

  Office and administration (per month) Recruitment and onboarding Software engineering service price (per hour)
On-site team in the US starting from $4,000 starting from $4,000 per hire $120+
Overseas team in Eastern Europe $0 $0 app. $35+
Outsourcing to Asia $0 $0 app. $15+

Depending on your and your partner’s location, you can save up to 70% of your budget with proper outsourcing.

Pay per work

Taking a closer look at how to save money with web development outsourcing, we should draw your attention to the “pay per work” principle. When you hire in-house specialists, you need to invest in their professional development and a convenient and inspirational workspace, and you pay a salary whether people are on vacation in Miami or at home with a headache. In the case of an outsourcing partnership, you pay only for the work done.

You pay only for the time that specialists work on your project, either as full-time work or a few hours per week. And you don’t pay if there are no tasks for the particular engineer.

And, if you need more engineers to launch your app, you can easily deal with it by just contacting your partner. The development company you work with is responsible for finding the right specialists to complete the task. It is a fast and reliable method to scale your team.

A great method to focus on more critical business processes

Building a web software product is just a tiny part of the enormous business architecture. A website means nothing if it doesn’t attract potential users and customers, if it doesn’t provide value, or if it doesn’t bring money. Hence, when you outsource engineering tasks, you allow yourself an opportunity to devote indispensable time, attention, effort, and brainstorming to vital business processes. Core business operations, sales, marketing and advertising, brand promotion and PR, networking with former and potential partners, participation in different events, etc. — these all are the activities that need you and your vision of the business. And if you try hard to be involved in the engineering process and do everything on your own, you give up your chance to move your business in the right direction.

Access the pool of more qualified engineers

As we mentioned above, outsourcing is so popular that even the world’s IT frontrunners do not deny they work with overseas partners. The idea was born long ago, and it covers a variety of industries. Hundreds and thousands of engineers in different locations are used to the outsourcing concept. For example, a single small IT outsourcing company with up to 20 engineers can deliver 10+ small projects or 2+ large projects annually. Each software development specialist has tried different tools and technologies, followed different tendencies, and worked according to different methodologies. Thus, developers involved in outsourcing have more solid experience than those who work on one single product development during their entire career.

A stronger team means a better product. So isn’t it a chance to outpace your potential competitors with a striking web solution?

Higher development speed

Earlier, we found out that opting for in-house development takes you upwards of seven weeks (or even more) to hire your first developer. When a team starts working together in the office, it takes 2–4 weeks to arrange all the processes, set up the workflow, and start working. After that, sick leaves, vacations, and other unpredicted obstacles may appear in a ream calendar. As a result, you fail to complete sprints and launch a product on time. A potential competitor rolls out a similar solution several weeks earlier and gets all your potential customers’ money.

Web development outsourcing allows starting right away. Signed agreements create strict time frames: You have the assurance that everything will be delivered on time, and your team will meet deadlines with no delays.

Due to the more in-depth experience we discussed above, the outsourcing team can estimate the project more precisely and build a solution of better quality in comparison to in-house engineers with a narrower specialization.

Money, focus, talents, and time — these are four core things you win by joining the web development outsourcing industry.

How to outsource web development

Web development outsourcing is a multi-component process that will eventually take you to your desired business goals. To start it properly, you need a clear and well-defined guide with a brief but informative description of all the processes. Here it is.

How to outsource web development

In this chapter, we will take a close look at three essential parts of web development outsourcing.

1.Define your goals

Where will you arrive when you don’t know where you go? What will you achieve if there’s nothing on your wish list? Before you start any software development process, you need to know clearly what you would like to get with this solution.

  • Is it a web app that will simplify people’s lives, like a babysitting app? Or a convenient CRM? Or a task management system with advanced and unique features?
  • Is it an app for entertainment?
  • Is it a social network web app?
  • Is it a brand-new messenger for either personal or corporate communication?

No matter what industry you plan to shake up or what app to launch, you need to build your vision of a perfect solution and decide how you should explain it to your future web development outsourcing partner.

  • Describe your app in detail. Tell about its core features, design, and specifics that will contrast with similar apps;
  • Build a simple app prototype;
  • Understand your target audience, create a buyer persona, and put down your business goals;
  • Conduct quick research to be aware of the top web development trends and technologies and the state of the market;
  • Create your suggestions to add to the list of technical requirements for your project;
  • Think about interviewing: What questions would you like your potential partner to answer? What field and technologies would you like the outsourcing company to be proficient in?
  • Define the price range you are ready to pay to outsource web development successfully.

That’s a to-do list to deal with before proceeding to stage 2.

2. Search and find your skilled web development outsourcing partner

Now, when you are fully aware of what you’d like to build and how much you are ready to invest in it, it’s time to find an IT design and development agency.

The global market size of IT outsourcing services has reached more than $62 billion. The industry is huge! Thus, it may be challenging to find a reliable partner with a high level of responsibility, good communication skills, and solid expertise in the industry you plan to change with your web app.

To simplify this task for you, we will consider two critical aspects of your search process: destinations to outsource web development and platforms where you can find a competent firm.

Top destinations to outsource web development

There are several options you should consider when outsourcing web development:

Onshore vs. Nearshore vs. Offshore web app outsourcing

  • Onshore web development outsourcing

In this case, you outsource specific tasks and services to the agency based in your country. For example, if you run your business in the US, you outsource software development to the US company, too. Depending on your location, this option may be extremely costly.

USA

  • Number of software engineers: 3.4–4.2 million
  • Average salary: up to $103,000/year

Although it is hard to correctly estimate the number of software engineers in America, it is surely the country with the largest population of qualified engineers. Raised with Silicon Valley and multiple innovative IT hubs, the US-based specialists have won their position in the world’s IT industry. However, US outsourcing is the most expensive option.

UK

  • Number of software engineers: more than 338,000
  • Average salary: up to $80,000/year

If your business location is the United Kingdom, local outsourcing means cooperation with the IT company based in the UK. The market is still relatively big, and hourly rates for development services are extremely high.

  • Nearshore web development outsourcing

In this case, you delegate your project to the country based on the same continent as you. For example, in regards to US entrepreneurs, nearshore outsourcing is an agreement with a team based in Mexico. We will take a closer look at popular nearshore destinations the entrepreneurs from the US and UK.

Mexico

  • Number of software engineers: more than 223,000

  • Average salary: up to $30,000/year

If you are an American startup, you may have already thought about web development outsourcing to this country. The option looks quite cheap. However, due to regulations between countries and the poor English skills of Mexican engineers, it may be very hard to achieve your business goals with an agency from this country.

Portugal

  • Number of software engineers: up to 32,000

  • Average salary: up to $37,000/year

They say Brexit will greatly affect the British job market. Thus, if you are based in the homeland of Revolut and TransferWise, you may need to take a closer look at Portugal. The market is narrow but promising, with considerably lower hourly rates in comparison to the UK job market.

This means that your outsourcing partner is thousands of miles away from you, on another continent, or even in the other part of world. Although it may look difficult to cooperate with someone based so far away, in the IT world, using modern communication and task management software, it looks the same as onshore or nearshore outsourcing.

Asian Countries

Here, we will highlight the unbeatable web development outsourcing leader in this region.

India

  • Number of software engineers: more than 2.75 million
  • Average salary: up to $15,000-16,000/year

Offshore web development to India is nothing new for US companies. However, the difference in culture is visible. Besides, surveys say that the technical level of some of the Indian engineers doesn’t meet project requirements, thus problems with product quality may occur. Web development outsourcing to this destination may be tricky and dangerous for your business, so check twice before starting the partnership with an Indian development company.

Central and Eastern Europe

Without a doubt, central and Eastern Europe is the best destination for web development outsourcing. With years of experience in the industry, thousands of competent engineers, advanced English skills, and affordable prices for services, they win the attention and preference of both enterprise companies and small startups from all over the world. Due to cultural compatibility, it’s easy, convenient, and safe to build a partnership with countries like Ukraine, Poland, Romania, and the Baltic Countries. For example, Skype’s success story started with software outsourcing to Estonia. Now, it’s net worth has reached $1.3 billion.

  • Number of software engineers: up to 280,000
  • Average salary: around $37,000/year

Poland is one of the biggest countries on a map of the region; so is the IT market. Great hubs in Warsaw and Krakow create great conditions for IT business prosperity. Based right in the center of Europe, it is directly connected with the majority of US and UK cities.

However, there’s another hidden gem in Eastern Europe that is powerful enough to take your business to new heights.

Ukraine

  • Number of software engineers: more than 185,000.
  • Average salary: ranges between $30,000-60,000/year

Due to the enormous number of IT companies in Ukraine, you can find a price range that fits your budget. Annually, thousands of IT engineers graduate from technical universities, so you can start a collaboration with a team of senior developers and engineer trainees. If the best price/quality ratio is a priority, focus on web development outsourcing to Ukraine.

Development team’s location Approximate number

 

of IT specialists
Average annual salary
USA 3.4–4.2 million

 

~$103,000
UK 338,000 ~$80,000
Mexico 223,000

 

~$30,000
Portugal

 

32,000 ~$37,000
India 2.75 million ~$15,000
Poland 280,000 ~$37,000
Ukraine 185,000 ~$30,000

Top platforms to find the best website development outsourcing partner

It’s not a piece of cake to find the perfect software development partner. A bit of your time and a detailed guide on how to build a prosperous partnership are essential. Fortunately, we have that guide.

In this chapter, we’ll draw your attention to some of the popular online platforms to start your partnership.

This is a valuable source of information about the best companies in a specific location. The platform is based on a ranking algorithm that analyzes industries, areas, countries, reviews, and achievements to provide users with reliable data about the best teams. Find out previous clients’ opinions, and get acquainted with services and portfolios to pick the best partner.

We are happy to note that Clockwise Software belongs to the top B2B Companies in Ukraine, according to Clutch.

This is a network for professional connections. You may already have your profile there, so it’s time to fill all the blank spaces in it, grow your network, and get acquainted with the co-founders of IT agencies that are ready to offer their services. Just don’t forget to check their reputation on the platform.

On Upwork, you can not only find independent specialists but also experienced web development agencies. Take note that unlike the previously mentioned platforms, you need to invest money in your Upwork business account. The platform may also charge a fee for the successful deal: Each time you send money to your partner, the platform charges 3% of the price.

Screening process: How to choose the best web development outsourcing partner

Make a shortlist of the outsourcing web development companies you are interested in. The most convenient way to analyze their strengths and weaknesses is to create a new Excel file. Consider the company’s size and number of projects, as well as their complexity and quality, number of specialists, prices for services, technology stack, and former clients reviews. Then, start the interviewing process.

Offshore partners are far away from you, so tools like Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, and similar will come in handy. During the conversation, pay attention to the following:

How to choose web app development partner

  • Communication and professionalism

Here, we mean both small talk at the beginning of the video conference and their technical background when discussing your project’s specifics. Make sure your potential partner listens carefully, shares his or her opinions openly, and describes previous experience simply but using proper technical vocabulary. This conversation is your chance to evaluate soft, hard, and English skills so be observing and take enough time for that.

  • Internal processes

What does the team look like? Where’s the office? Do they have an internal recruiter to hire new talent? These all are the questions that may matter for your collaboration. Along with that, you need to find out how they organize the development process. There are different methodologies: The Agile approach and Scrum framework are considered to be the most innovative ones. Thanks to the Product Owner’s role in the process, you may have your own representative working in the team.

  • Portfolio, CVs, code samples

Include in your conversation the topic of previous experience. If you are a tech-savvy person, code samples will tell you much about troubleshooting skills, refactoring processes, and overall quality of projects. If you are not, check the previous work, websites, and web apps of the web development outsourcing company.

  • Company’s profile

Online presence is significant. Ask for links to the company’s profiles on different web channels. If you’ve already checked Clutch and LinkedIn, ask if there’s a Facebook or Instagram profile. Check the company’s reputation in the local market and former employee’s reviews.

  • Price

Find out about hourly rates for engineering services and compare it to your budget. Add this information to your table and choose the company you are ready to trust.

These are the cornerstones of your future partnership. Don’t underestimate any of the points, and take your time to make a meaningful decision.

3. Outsourcing web development: Set up the process

Once you’ve chosen a team to whom you will outsource your web app development, it is time to set up the process and delegate the routine engineering tasks. No doubt, you should keep an eye on product development. With our recommendation on how to do it, you will be fully aware of significant things without devoting too much time to this.

  1. Team communication

The tool for sharing messages, online calls, and conferences is a must. Seamless communication between teammates is your secret to a high-quality project.

Tools you may like:

  1. Web design checking

Building a web application from scratch all starts with design. Discuss the simplest tools with your partner, and always be able to check the latest version of your web app’s design.

Tools you may like:

  1. InVision

  2. Figma

  3. Framer

    3. Task management

What tools for task management has your partner used before? Is it a good idea to use this tool for your project, too? Nowadays, many development agencies use simple Trello; however, it doesn’t cover all the needs of the Scrum sprint-based project. Other agencies have their own internal TMS. However, it may be unsafe to opt for such a solution. Thus, you should consider the options and talk about them with your teammates.

Tools you may like:

  1. Jira
  2. Workzone
  3. TargetProcess
  4. Time tracking

To ensure nothing is missed, you also need a powerful tool for time tracking and invoicing. Here, the essential feature is detailed reporting. Some of the tools even allow monitoring of developers’ activity during work time.

Tools you may like:

Leave all the rest to your development partner. The IT outsourcing company you’ve chosen is fully aware of the recent trends in the web development market, knows about cloud storage and programming language, or knows what test automation tools will be the best for your product. Once the process is up and running, focus on your business goals, and start raising your empire.

Steps to outsource web development

Addressing your final concerns

Now that we’ve described the entire process in detail, it is time for you to act. Are there any “What if …?” remaining? If you still have some doubts or concerns, let us address them.

  • “What if developers have trouble communicating in English?”

During your very first conversation with the outsourcing team representative, you can ask about it. Besides, you can interview every teammate personally to make sure no communication issues will emerge.

The IT market demonstrates pretty positive statistics. For instance, we analyzed the situation in Ukraine: 80% of software engineers based in Ukraine speak English seamlessly (intermediate or higher level). So once you hire engineers that belong to this majority, there’s nothing to worry about.

  • “What if an app’s security suffers?”

First of all, security is assured by NDA and other agreements you will sign. Second of all, you, as a product founder, may own the server and grant access to each teammate yourself. Secure passwords and the latest data security technologies are essential, too. By following simple principles and working with a trustworthy partner, your web app will be safe.

  • “What if there will be a need for maintenance on my web app?”

All software products need support after deployment. Thus, in your agreement, you need to set up the terms and prices for further project support. You will always have someone by your side to deal with any small issues.

Outsourcing strategies will assist you in reaching business goals. Adopt them correctly, and you will save your time. Outsource web development projects as soon as possible, and you’ll save your money.

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