Outsourcing services is a practical and logical business solution, but, like many business solutions, it requires evaluation and planning. While the outsourcing process has a well-earned reputation for cost savings, it needs to be done correctly in order to be inexpensive.
One of the biggest mistakes an eager project manager can make when working with an outsource agency is having too-lofty expectations. If you try to launch your product with all of the features active, you will be maximizing your cost and your risk. Instead, work with your internal team and your outsourcing provider to build a roadmap for your project. Use a minimal viable product (MVP) launch plan, and collect feedback from your audience to help guide you on which improvements and features you should prioritize for your next iterations. Focus on getting the core of your project launched using your outsourcing partner, then continue to work with them to make improvements. This is one of the best ways to manage your outsourcing costs; keeping your consultants focused will ensure efficient and thorough work, whereas giving them competing priorities and changing timelines on a whim will result in frustration and ultimately, higher invoices.
While global outsourcing will absolutely save you money in the long term, you have to be prepared to spend some money in the beginning. If you are working on outsourcing development projects, especially, you need to consider all the elements that are involved. As an example, if you are outsourcing management of a mobile app build, you’ll likely need to have multiple versions of the app so that it will work on all of the popular mobile devices.
Here are some pro tips for maximizing your outsourcing cost savings:
- Spend the time to define the scope of your project, especially if you are building something that hasn’t been done before. We’ve all seen internal projects go down in flames because there wasn’t proper planning. A roadmap becomes even more important when you’ll be working with a team that is an outsourcing services provider.
- Provide your outsourced team with the most complete wireframe that you can, as applicable for website development outsourcing and other technical projects. Similar to the tip above, the more information you can provide, the less confusion there will be and more efficiently the outsourcing process will go.
- Finish your design as much as possible before sending it to your outsource consultants. If you can provide them with full design, they will be able to give you the exact final product that you want. If your team does their due diligence, part of the process will include brainstorming potential issues and solutions prior to sending the scope of work to your external team, which will mean those decisions won’t have to be done on the fly and won’t create additional iterations of edits.
Using an outsourcing company is a great option for many businesses, but figuring out how much it is going to cost will require a bit of time and research on your part since each project is going to be a little bit different.