The software is eating up the world and we all have to face it. This fact drives more and more companies to outsource the IT work. However, finding a right tech-partner or a software house may turn out to be a path dotted with potholes and traps. Why is it so hard to track down a reliable IT partner to build an application? What do we need to consider? Let’s find out!
Why have I decided to write this post? Well, the inspiration popped into my head when I was taking part in a great IT event recently. SIBB, the Association of ICT & Digital Business Industry in Berlin and Brandenburg, organized an event to help German companies find a proper tech-partner. They invited us to share our knowledge and experience related to this process together with other software development companies from Poland and Germany.
The whole process of finding a tech-partner can be overwhelming - same as picking the best product on a fruit market. How do you even start? Search Google? For what? "Best Software house"; "Great applications" ? It could work, but then what? How do you choose the right partner?
As Evojam, we underlined the fact that spotting an effective software house can overwhelm many business players, that’s why we tried to guide the event attendees through the process. We also highlighted that putting some effort into recognizing the right tech-partner can result in establishing a long-term business relationship.
Finding the right software house – why is it so hard?
First of all, we need to acknowledge, that software development business requires remote communication and cooperation. Remote work, time zone shifting, a curse of knowledge, challenges in defining scope – these are only some of the reasons why there are so many horror stories about building software, not only with an external vendor.
What’s also very important, tech companies can focus on different types of projects. We can come across vendors specializing in:
- MVPs (Minimum Viable Product) for startups - quick and “dirty” - approach to get the product on the market and then verify it with customers, which is a very important stage at the startup’s adolescence.
- Body leasing – augmenting the client’s team with any type of developers. Tech-partner comes here as a remote programming squad for special tasks.
- Scalable apps - building an upgraded and more mature version of an app once the client have build the MVP or knows exactly what’s needed on the market.
- Application for a certain industry - for example, for e-commerce companies.
- ...and many more.
As a business decision maker, you can obviously narrow down the choice by selecting tech companies according to what kind of product you would like to build. Nevertheless, you might also find it challenging to pick a tech-partner that will fit in the profile of your company or start-up.
Stakeholder & Tech Company – How to find a perfect match?
Not so fast! Let’s start with the general overview. I believe, that finding a solid software house works very similar to choosing any other service vendor. For example, if you want to build a house, you need to hire a construction company. Surprisingly or not, you will need to take a look at similar aspects of the construction team as in the software team. The fact that it’s a software industry doesn’t make vendor choosing process a rocket science.
Turn on your imagination - you just found a potential candidate for a software vendor. Maybe some friends gave you recommendations, maybe you met those guys at some tech conference, or perhaps you just tripped over them while browsing the internet. Right now, you may have a lot of questions and doubts. What should you do at this stage? Take those three key factors into serious consideration. And I do mean that.
You want to create a great piece of technology, but to do that you need to deal with people first. Believe me or not, but the last time I checked all of our clients were …. people. Even in the era of bots all of our employees are people. It’s the people business based on relations and trust as any other service business. My recommendation is to schedule a video call with the founders, project manager or/and main technical person and just talk to them. Try to ask all the important questions you have in mind. But what is super important - check if you feel the chemistry between you & vendor. We all prefer to work with people we actually like.
Projects & technology
You probably don’t want a software house to learn from scratch on your project. Good education costs, so you want an experienced and high-quality team. Don’t hesitate to verify if the company did a similar project in the past. Anything with the same level of complexity, integrations, architecture or maybe even the same industry. You should also investigate if the company uses the same technology you want to use in your project. Try to get as much technical information as you can. Maybe you can even get access to the repository to check the code quality.
References from previous clients
I will share a secret with you. The software business is heavily based on referrals. A happy client can bring other clients who already trust you because of the recommendation. That’s why the referrals are so valuable for every software company. I recommend asking the vendor for clients’ references. Schedule some calls with them or send them a list of questions you want to be answered. For example, I would ask them about:
- What were the challenges or problems they had with the software house?
- How did the vendor solve them?
This is the type of information you need to know because you could meet some challenges in your project as well.
Building and launching an MVP, a scalable app, or a pre-defined application for a certain industry – whatever your business goal is, finding the one & only tech-partner can be quite a challenge. However, it’s not impossible. Note down our tips & tricks described in this article, and get ready to make a best-case scenario for choosing the right software house.
Please remember to:
- Choose the right profile of the company, doing similar projects and serving similar clients.
- Talk to the people in the company and check if you feel they understand you.
- Verify technology and project experience as well.
- Talk to other clients of the vendor and get the most from their experience.
If you want to know more about finding the good tech partner for your business or building the product with the remote team we will be more than happy to talk with you.