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Challenges and Benefits of Offshore Software Development

Posted By Praveen Joshi on 4th August 2016
Are you curious about offshore software development for your company? Read on.
What is Offshore Software Development?

Offshore software development (OSD) is the process of using the services of a software team located in a foreign country to develop software for use in your home country. 

Just to clarify, OSD is a form of business process outsourcing, with the main concept being that your service provider is based in another country. Various IT companies specialising in custom software development are a dominant force in the OSD market.

Offshore Development Team

Offshore software development ranges from simple code writing to custom software development, software support and maintenance, IT research, mobile application development, and website building and design.

The primary motivation for companies to go the offshore software development route is to circumvent the higher software development charges of the local service providers. The lower cost of operations in an OSD model helps companies be more price-competitive in both the domestic and international markets.

However, for most business's the decision to either develop software in-house or to hire a global IT outsourcing company, is not an easy one. After all, in today's high-tech world, technology is often the only differentiating factor. Any new technological development is easily imitable with the ever-lurking danger of violation of intellectual property rights.

In such a scenario, doesn't getting an IT outsourcing company to do the job only enhance risks? And are the cost savings from offshore software development worth it?

To answer these, and some of the other concerns you may have, let's dive into the challenges and benefits of offshore software development.

Challenges associated with Offshore Software Development

Most companies who choose OSD do so because of the reduction in overall costs and lower time-to- market. But it would be incorrect only to compare the cost of labour between the two locations. What is of utmost importance is the quality of resources you are hiring. In software development communication is key.

Developing a new software is a highly social process with teams sharing complex ideas and concepts. Doing that can be arduous when people are in the same room, let alone with a team that is thousands of miles away and accessible mostly through video-conferencing. A lower cost software development team that does not have the skills or the experience to understand the project briefing can lead to expensive re-works at a later stage.

Also, remember that you have to train the OSD team to understand your processes and existing systems. If you are working with an OSD company for the first time, there will be a longer learning curve, which can cause unforeseen delays in your project.

The geographical distance between the OSD company and the client also has a direct impact on the efficiency and cost of delivery. The differences in time zone can affect quality of collaboration that you’ll have with your team. The greater the travel distance between the two countries, the higher will be the travel costs from the OSD company location to your office. It also means that your management staff will lose more productive hours travelling.

And last but not the least are concerns whether your OSD partner will protect your trade secrets. The lack of awareness on how a company can legally protect intellectual property beyond its shores is one of the biggest concerns in establishing OSD contracts.

Benefits of the Offshore Software Development Model

Today businesses need to innovate rapidly to respond to threats and opportunities. Many companies are turning to overseas talent to increase their R&D bandwidth, access hard-to- find skill sets, create better software faster, and to lower overall costs.

Outsourcing software development can produce substantial savings for your business, and free your software team to focus on on-site software issues. An OSD company usually dedicates a team for each project, which means that qualified people are working around the clock to get the job done. The OSD model ensures that the work gets done faster and that your product reaches the market sooner.

It's challenging and costly to maintain an in-house IT team that has expertise in the latest technologies. On the other hand, when you outsource, you don't have to invest in IT infrastructure or spend time recruiting, hiring, training, and employees. With an offshore software company you gain access to a vast pool of talent capable of delivering international software services.

Apart from technical skills, an experienced software development company brings a lot to the table. The OSD team understands the challenges involved, having implemented international custom software development projects for other clients. Plus, an external team that is not ingrained in the 'existing way of doing things' can offer new insights to improve your business processes.

Clearly, it makes good financial and business sense to seek outside expertise in software development. In the age of globalisation and technological advances, outsourcing software development is fast becoming an essential capability for every enterprise.

The essence of a successful OSD relationship is choosing the right IT outsourcing company. The RSK Business Solutions has been providing offshore software development services since 2009. Our custom software team follows the Agile approach to ensures that the product we deliver is as per client expectations. Our, intellectual property protection guarantee is well documented via a Non-Disclosure Agreement and Employee Confidentiality Contract.

If you are interested in offshore software development or would just like to know more about our custom software development services, please get in touch with our office in the U.K.

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