How To Choose the Right Offshore Development Company for Your Project
Naturally, not every offshore development company is the right choice in each situation. Even the best software companies in Brazil might not be a good fit for your specific project. Consequently, before you find a partner, think of the following factors:
What Kind of Reputation Do They Have?
All the development companies on this list have stellar reputations, which is why they were selected. However, if you find a company not on this list but that you believe is the right choice for you, make sure to explore its reputation a bit.
Do they have good communication with their customers? Are their clients satisfied? Do they finish their projects on time? What quality of work do they provide? Can you even find customer reviews? You want a tried and tested company, so hiring a new company with no reputation is almost as risky as one with a bad reputation.
What Is Their Area of Expertise?
Most software developers offer a wide range of services but truly specialize in just a few areas. Consider the exact services you need and let that guide you. For example, in case the majority of your project is back-end programming, even the best UX/UI design company might not be a good choice – you will pay premium prices for services you don’t need, while getting a lower quality of work for those you do.
Ask to See Their Portfolio
A software development company’s reputation and area of expertise can both be gleaned from its portfolio. It is commonly displayed on their website, but if it isn’t, ask for one. It will help you understand what projects the company worked on and, consequently, what they have experience with.
You can always hire a development company that has never worked on a project like yours, be it because you believe in them, their prices are appealing, or for any other reason – but understand that without demonstrable experience, you are taking a gamble.
Is the Team Available During the Required Time Frame?
Then, even if an offshore company meets the quality you need, is all the staff you require available? Most software development is project-oriented, which means your schedules need to match. If you find a company you really like, it may be a better option to wait until they are fully available instead of hiring another company or doing the project in (additional) stages.
What Is Their Development Process?
You don’t run the operative side of the company you hire, yes, but you should still have insight into their process. Software development is usually done in an Agile framework – but there are many Agile frameworks and ways to apply them. So ask specific, practical questions regarding the operating procedures and demand transparency.
Do a Cost-Benefit Analysis
Pricing is something that can never be discounted when hiring an offshore development company. After all, one of the main reasons to outsource development is to cut the budget. Consequently, you need to do a cost-benefit analysis. You can start with 3 basic questions:
- How much would outsourcing development to Brazil cost?
- How much would outsourcing development to another company in your country cost?
- How much would an in-house team cost?
When calculating number three, don’t just account for the salaries, but also the training and overhead that goes into in-house employees. And, of course, the basis is that regardless of the option that is the cheapest, the project still needs to be accomplished.
Additionally, don’t just focus on the gross cost when deciding between multiple offshore companies. A low-cost offshore company can still be less cost-effective than a more expensive one. Experience and expertise typically have a higher price tag.
For instance, if at the end of the project you need to hire additional staff to even out some kinks because the original company couldn’t complete the job up to your standards, you’re probably better off hiring a company that can complete the project from start to finish.
Communication and Location
The location of the company you hire may seem like an unimportant part of the equation. However, good communication is the backbone of any development project, and that includes the client’s input. Thus, it’s easier to effectively communicate with a nearshore company (like those in Brazil), than with one that is 10 time zones away. You can always make it work, but having open channels of communication at all times is something you should keep in mind.
Hiring an Offshore Development Company vs. an In-House Team
We’ve explained what you should consider when choosing between different offshore companies, but isn’t it simpler to have an in-house development team to take care of everything?
Well, no, at least not always. There are significant benefits to outsourcing software development, even when discounting the training and management an in-house team requires. When outsourcing development, you get the benefits of:
- Reduced Costs – assuming you are from the US (or Europe), outsourcing development to LATAM countries will significantly cut costs. The median pay of Brazilian developers (and LATAM developers in general) is much lower than their US or European counterparts. However, the lower pay does not equate to less expertise. Thus, you get comparable services at lower costs.
- Access to a Larger Talent Pool – offshore development companies have access to a much larger pool of developers and IT experts. Their business models rest on providing all the services that a client may need and that includes mixing and matching teams depending on the circumstances. An in-house team, on the contrary, will typically be much smaller and may not have the knowledge necessary to complete projects without hiring additional staff.
- More Flexibility – software development companies that specialize in providing services to US or European companies have systems in place that allow them to scale teams up or down, as needed. Thus, outsourced teams are more flexible than in-house teams and can easily adjust to the scope of each project. Need a UX designer for the finishing touches? That’s not an issue when development is outsourced. With an in-house team, it simply doesn’t work like that.
What About Other Countries?
You have the list of the 15 best software development countries in Brazil, but what about other countries? We’ve got you covered. Below, you can find similar lists for other countries in Latin America and Eastern Europe, so have a look and take your time choosing a company that best suits your needs.