risks of offshore outsourcing

Are you seriously thinking about replacing your in-house team with the offshore team for the sake of cost reduction? Well, this might be a good idea to bring into reality, but only with the right approach. 


Do you know what the key complaints about managing offshore teams are? Among the principal issues business owners recognize are insufficient responsiveness, ineffective problem-solving, and communication barriers. That’s only the tip of the iceberg!


However, it doesn’t mean you should quickly abandon the decision to prefer offshore outsourcing software development over the local one. It only means that you should consider some risks of outsourcing and know how to overcome each of them. And that’s what we’ll dwell on in today’s piece, so read on to become an expert in managing offshore development teams.


Offshore IT risks you should know how to deal with


You’ve got it—working with offshore teams isn’t as simple as it may sound. Meanwhile, if you’ve chosen a reliable offshore outsourcing partner, all the risks of offshore outsourcing will melt like sugar in your tea. 


Still, let’s specify what exactly you should be aware of while shifting your team offshore.


Communication & cultural barriers


Building and maintaining communication within a team is easier when all members are in one place and share the same culture. In contrast, when the members of your team are spread all over the world, miscommunication and social tensions become possible. 


Solutions: 


  • Avoid metaphors and speak directly to the point.
  • Give preference to basic vocabulary to be easily understood.
  • Share the company’s communication practices with all the team members to be on the same page.
  • Embrace cultural differences between workers and treat everyone as equals.
  • Encourage opinion sharing and be open to feedback.


Meeting deadlines


Fulfilling each sprint’s goals per the expected date is the desired fruit for any development team. Sometimes, it remains a tricky task because of the project’s novelty, overwhelming requirements, or unclear expectations on the client’s side. Whatever the case, we advise you to follow our key tips on how to meet deadlines in software development and eliminate ever-shifting tasks within your team’s workflow. 


As part of troubleshooting, we also suggest trying the following solutions:


  • Ensure the project requirements are clear-cut for all team members.
  • Apply motivation instead of pressure as a driver of progress.
  • Ask all the team members if there’s enough time to tackle the particular task per the indicated time—their opinion should be unanimous. 
  • Request developers to report on the update through the tables to compare the factual result with the estimated one.
  • Be ready to give your new offshore team time to adjust to the flow and get familiar with the project’s specifics.


Quality of deliverables


The quality of development outputs can be influenced by numerous factors: the extent of the team’s unity and its ability to exchange knowledge, speed of adaptation, internal team fluctuations, non-communicated work standards, etc. These things can hinder the overall performance and negatively affect the quality of service, but guess what, it all can be prevented.


Solutions: 


  • Invest time in managing human resources to reduce their turnover, including the key causes behind it, more flexible options at work, communication practices, etc. 
  • Improve the staff loyalty by rewarding their hard work and quality of performance.
  • Engage workers to maintain a corporate culture of mutual aid and experience exchange.
  • Make the evaluation process documented and shared with all and apply it to ensure each deliverable meets the expected result.


Tracking progress


If you need to manage an offshore team, you obviously need to have a well-through progress measuring system. These standards will keep your team afloat, leading it in the right direction whenever things get confused or new challenges arise. 


To implement proper guidance over the progress of your offshore IT team, benefit from these solutions: 


  • Voice your expectations and schedules at each stage and have it all documented and accessible by your team members.
  • Introduce the newbies to the whole team so that they can see the whole picture of the development process and know whom to go to if an issue occurs.
  • Use convenient tools to facilitate the effective workflow: company calendar, video calls, messengers, and task trackers.


​​Goals mismatch


One of the risks you may face on your way while hiring offshore teams is the mismatch in goals. That’s why it’s crucial to transmit the company’s vision, values, and objectives timely to all the involved parties.


Solutions: 


  • Pay attention to onboarding and inform the teammates about the company’s values and the product in detail.
  • Make the project’s information well-communicated within the team to create outputs that match expectations.
  • Turn to the ‘we’ (or ‘us’) perspective to emphasize the shared efforts in achieving the product goals.
  • Build an inclusive atmosphere through meetings and regular video communication for all team members to feel connected instead of isolated.


Privacy and security 


Another issue you, as a business owner, may be concerned with is security in offshore software development. It involves the vendor’s internal practices as well as ways to keep your intellectual property undisclosed and well-protected. 


Among the best practices to handle the risk of a data breach, we advise the following solutions:


  • Ask your offshore outsourcing provider about the security practices they’ll implement within your product development. 
  • Access the robustness and advancement of the security approach suggested.
  • Conduct regular audits to ensure the data protection methods work well.
  • Train your personnel on the best and newest anti-fraud practices.


Trust in a third-party provider


Lack of trust is one of the most widespread obstacles to handling business operations smoothly. To prevent it from harming your business, catch our hints below.


Solutions: 


  • Make thorough research while choosing the software development provider.
  • Ask all your questions about technology, approach, and experience before the partnership. 
  • Make a detailed Service Level Agreement outlining commitments, service details, and performance metrics.


Overcome these risks and make IT offshoring work for you with Patternica


Choosing to build the software product with the IT offshore team is a great idea that should bring innovation, scalability, flexibility, cost reduction, and access to relevant talents for your project. At the same time, you may come across some challenges in the process of IT offshoring. Each of them, however, can be confidently resolved in the professional’s hands. Give your development job to Patternica and forget all the troubles!

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