Businesses love software development outsourcing. And for good reason. It’s a reliable way to add bandwidth, cut costs, and help companies focus on core business functions. But before you decide on a vendor, you must consider which type of partnership suits your business best.
The first, onshore outsourcing, is when you outsource to a firm in your country. Onshore outsourcing gives you an outsourced team with similar business practices, communication styles, and in a close time zone. But these upsides come at a premium.
In contrast, offshore outsourcing involves partnering with a vendor in a different country, often on the other side of the world. This type of outsourcing is cost-effective and provides access to a large labor market. But you’ll be operating across different time zones and your teams will likely have different approaches to doing business.
Nearshore outsourcing provides a perfect middle ground. By outsourcing to a nearby country, you can combine the efficiency and convenience of onshore outsourcing with the bigger savings and talent pool of offshore outsourcing.
The result? An efficient, cost-effective, and highly skilled team that’s awake when your team’s awake.
So, what does that look like in practice? Let’s say your business operates in the United States. Onshore outsourcing is choosing a vendor in the U.S. Offshore outsourcing is partnering with a firm in the Philippines. And nearshore outsourcing is partnering with a delivery team from a nearby country like Colombia. Now, let’s take a look at how this kind of partnership can benefit your company.
Hiring and retaining an in-house team of qualified IT specialists is challenging. The process to recruit even one skilled developer can take months. And without the necessary technical expertise, businesses won’t be able to translate their ideas into innovative software.
Nearshore software development companies remove these kinds of hurdles by adding talent and organization to your team. Good nearshore providers offer multiple engagement models that help you prioritize how you use them. If staff augmentation is what matters most, they give you the best people for development, quality assurance, support, and maintenance. This helps you maintain day-to-day operations and still meet unexpected needs in coverage.
If you partner with an offshore team on a different side of the world, you’re going to be operating across business practices. Countries will operate under different understandings of chain of command, business hours, and work/life balance. This causes friction. And when it comes to software development, friction leads to problems and expenses.
Additionally, conflicting time zones make turnarounds and bug resolutions harder. If you’re in the U.S. and your app crashes at 12:00 p.m., an offshore team in India will be asleep.
But with nearshore, you’re working with teams from nearby countries. When you partner with a vendor in an adjacent country, you get a highly skilled development team that can align with your business culture and internal processes – in your time zone. This ensures faster response and turnaround on urgent items, bug fixes, and deadlines.
Much like distance, language barriers and contrasting communication styles cause friction.
Different cultures have different expectations on things like the appropriate response time for a project-related email. A delayed response may leave your in-house team frustrated. This creates conflict that wastes time and gets in the way of quality software development.
In contrast, nearshore vendors share language and communication styles. This aligns expectations and makes the project easier to manage. With nearshore outsourcing, you get offshore outsourcing but with the same quality of communication as onshore.
Intellectual property (IP) is essential to software development.
If you develop in-house, it’s simple. Your team wrote the code, so your team owns it. But when you outsource software development, things get complicated. This is because the outsourced team helps author the code, but your company assumes ownership.
This is why contracts must address how to transfer and protect the intellectual property being developed. But you need to be able to enforce this contract. This is important because each country is in charge of its own copyright enforcement.
And some countries have weak IP protections that may not match those in your country. This can cause huge problems. If an offshore outsourcer violates your IP contract, you’ll have to enforce it in their country. And, while there are international organizations that coordinate compliance, some countries don’t play by the rules.
Nearshore outsourcing solves the problem by aligning your company with an outsourcing vendor that operates under similar standards for IP protection. For example, if you’re operating out of France and outsourcing to Poland, you’ll both be operating under EU IP laws. This makes it easier to enforce IP contracts, NDAs and keep your software and code protected.
Nearshore software development companies provide a great middle ground between onshore and offshore outsourcing. This helps you invest in IT talent and project management wisely, while making it easier for your business to develop high-quality products on time and on budget.
Need a nearshore software development partner to help you get your product to market fast? We can help. Contact us today and tell us about your project.
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