Are You Struggling To Manage Your Software Development Outsourcing Partner- Follow These Best Practices?
You’ve just signed a deal with a [software outsourcing company]. You could be thinking that your enterprise software objective is achieved.
You must be overjoyed on saving dollars and thinking about the next big step.
You do believe that a successful product can be developed by a team that has the following
- Technical capabilities
- Industry experience
- Sound Leadership
- International Presence
The quality of your software depends on the execution of the team you hired and their involvement to detail to make the venture successful.
Does selection of the software development company completes your task or that is the beginning?
If you’re outsourcing software development, do you feel how the engagement will work? Has your software outsourcing partner understood your requirement?
Did you feel recurring bugs in the software developed will delay deadlines? Does getting on Skype calls daily to address communication concern, stressing you up?
It has happened to large enterprises too. Do not worry. You’re not alone.
Things such as different time zone or collocated office should not resurface your mind.
You should see working with remote teams as an advantage, not a challenge. If your team is committed, transparent and open to feedback, you are in a driver’s seat.
As a company founder, you have to take the ownership to bring people together and spend time on creating a work plan that improves performance.
Would you like to stay happy, stress free and always updated on the project? Stay tuned.
You can follow these best industry practices to manage remote teams or outsource projects in an effective manner.
Communicate, Communicate and ….Communicate
You will often heard about challenges of outsourcing or working with remote teams.
You will find that projects struggle to get completed, because teams do not prioritize communication.
If your development centre is in India and you have an in house design team in US, make sure they chat with each other. This will break the ice; teams work better when they trust each other.
You can create a plan on how you want your teams to address a problem. If they are comfortable using Zoom, SKype or a phone call, that should be fine.
As long as the team is available for daily updates and can collaborate when needed, it is a great sign.
Teams can also set up a video calls every week. When you hear someone’s voice or see them on screen, it builds a layer of substance and context.
Tip: Separate development, design and project management discussions. Inculcate a habit of written communication within teams.
Spend Time to Know Your Team Better
If you are working with software outsourcing teams in India and Ukraine, make sure you understand their culture. How can you do that?
You should visit at least once a year to know them better. When you foster personal relationship, you will see them into the workplace.
A particular event or a scene can be dealt in your society, it may be different in another society. You need to show empathy and accept others behavior will not be same for situations. If in UK, you take lunch at 12.30 PM, but in Ukraine, the team eats at 1.30 PM, respect and accept that.
Tip: You will grow your EQ (Emotional Quotient) when you understand and accept others perspective. Adjustment and co-operation is the magic wand that will fix many professional problems.
Inculcate Patience. When It Is Not Easy
You have not received an email or a chat update from the engineering team. Are you going crazy in your mind? If so, do a check of your thoughts.
You will not always be presented with a fairy tale world when building software.
It is important to be supportive of your remote software outsourcing partner. If they’re facing obstacles in building the application, you need to understand, they are also not doing this purposely.
Your words of encouragement will help build a great level of confidence in them.
Tip: Does Patience not work in matters most precious to you?
Define The Task Owner
If you’re working with remote software teams, you will come across situations, a message conveyed is left unanswered. When the next time, you get into a call, your partner will have no clue what happened?
You will be seriously angry. You can save yourself from such events. Typically for a software development project involved a Full stack Lead, a QA engineer and a Project in charge.
You can assign the task to each task owner. Make it clear, that you will only be asking them. No one else.
That way, you close a typical reply, “ I thought, “” is doing the task. I need to check”.
Tip: Once you define the task owner for your project, there is visibility and accountability for the work.
Focus on Empowerment
If you have a quality of micro-managing your project, it may not augur well with your offshore team.
You cannot have a single communication strategy as a solution. Empower your team to set up their own process.
On every discussion, put them as a leader and turn the table. You will soon find great ideas and feedback coming to improve your project performance.
Ask them, how they will solve a problem. You have to play the role of a coordinator and bring consensus to an agreement. Such initiatives foster strong working relationships.
Tip: Do not be shortsighted. Let loose and let others own their work.
Incentivize on Milestone Achieved
Ideally. you can start your project with a string of milestone attached.
You need to create urgency within the boots of the team to get the work done. Linking payouts to milestones is also a way to check how processes are defined.
You can set a bonus criteria for annual performance of the team or offering online gift cards to resources working for your project.
It did not necessarily be expensive. Your intentions will trigger positive vibes within the working environment.
Tip: Be genuine. Your actions will be copied by others.
Invest in a Great Technology Software
When you are working with teams remotely, you have no control over their work ethics, behavior and responding to challenging situations.
But you can make an effort to invest in a quality technology collaboration software. Create different teams for different purposes.
The modern day collaboration technology is vast and expanding. You can consider the below options best suited for your team.
Tip: Fix your technology gaps and enjoy the fruits.
Treat Them As Your Employees, Not Another Vendor
You cannot ignore the fact that treatment of individuals and teams, creates a great culture. You need to show empathy and respond to them when they need you.
Remember, your remote team do not have access to you all the time. They may have fear or insecurity.
You have to set the agenda straight and support their decisions and help them take independent decisions.
Tip: Create a thought–They are your employees working in another center.
Make Feedback Sessions Factual, Not Personal
When you know your team deeply, you will be able to approach them accordingly.
If an email works better or a video call for giving feedback. You do not have to follow the sandwich approach ( a negative feedback put between two pieces of positive feedback). It has become a thing of the past.
If you have developed the trust within the outsourcing team, they will also understand that there is nothing personal, only factual.
It will take time to create an environment, when your team talks to you freely without any fear.
Once that layer is established, you can address issues directly.
Tip: Share the feedback, the way, you want to listen from your manager.
Building Creative Silos WIthin The Team
If you can embrace creatives ideas within the team, it will help in people getting involved.
May be after a first phase of the product development, get on a call, be open and ask about things.
You cannot argue that best ideas come when you have a detached view on the subject. You should ask your team members to share processes that went right or things that can be improved.
If you are empowering your team to take control and ownership of the work done, it will go a long way in developing a great digital product.
Ask your remote team to innovate and keep thinking to improve user experience. The more they are involved, you will see that in the output.
Creative thinking should be given precedence over critical thinking.
When your team is relaxed, and have more freedom to take up tasks in the interest of product, you will see your face shining like a Sun!
Tip: Creativity blossoms when teams are free and relax at work place.
Set Clear Agenda
You need to set your agenda clear. Leverage technology to understand the commitments of design, development and testing team.
Once your team knows the project schedule and have overcome communication hurdles, productivity will increase.
Your remote team should know the importance of goals. It should be become a culture.
Your role of working like a remote CEO will play a bigger role in shaping the project delivery.
You need also set clear expectations on the following
- Weekly tasks completed
- Scheduled meetings
- Availability of different teams
- Communication system
- Timely meetings
- Key projects and deadlines
Tip: Clear goals lead to clean roads.
Create a Vision For Your Team
Show your team that your product will be catering to international markets and if it becomes a hit, they will bag the rights for exclusive software development partner
Such steps will have a huge impact the team. As your product grows, the remote development team will also find reasons to scale their own business.
If you are creating a long term goals with facts, they will put in the extra stride to get to the target. If your team works for your goals, you will be able to overcome any breaks.
Tip: Growing together is a better approach to winning trust.
Final words of advice on successfully managing software outsourcing
The most important roadblock for your successfully managing remote software outsourcing team is communication.
Ask your partner to create a comprehensive communication document. By practicing this approach, you get rid of doubts, assumptions and putting ihe case to another person.
The document should clearly outline the project management tools used, tracking tools and task owners for the project.
With the plan in place, you know the current status of the project, the issues reported and latest inputs from task owners.
If you rigorously follow the communication schedule, you will surely develop trust working with your remote software outsourcing company.
If you are looking for a team that values discipline, innovation, accountability and delivery, your choice is clear – Invimatic Solutions. Let us discuss your present issues and work together in finding a solution.
- By The Invimatic Editorial Team
- 12 March, 2019
- Categories: People Management