Choosing to outsource software product development is a complex decision which includes target market needs (particularly around speed to market), core vs non-core product development, skills of current development staff, ability to hire key skills, and many other factors.
Based on my experience outsourcing software product development and providing outsourced software product development services, I believe the following are the top 4 reasons for outsourcing software product development.
- You need to quickly adapt to new technology but don't have the skills in-house. For example, with the advent of smart mobile devices, your users may demand that they be allowed to access your software product via a mobile device. Or, you may need to transform your product from an on-premise product to a SaaS product. But, you don't have the skills in-house to do this.
- You have a rapid growth plan that includes developing and releasing new software products at a more rapid pace than ever before. This may require putting new teams together quickly to address the new demand on product development.
- You are unwilling or unable to find enough staff with the appropriate skills in your local market. For example, you may need to ramp up a team of 5-10 developers in 2 weeks. That is usually very difficult in any local market (particularly the 2 week requirement).
- Your product development needs require flexible staffing. For example, you may need an extra team for a few weeks at a time, but not all the time or you foresee needing an extra team for only a few months.
Our most successful outsourcing clients cited at least 2 of the above reasons as their primary impetus for outsourcing their software product development. I'm interested in hearing other reasons for outsourcing software product development. Let me hear from you.