Aug 30, 2008

Ideas on offshoring

My ideas for succeeding with offshoring might be different from what you hear/read elsewhere, so grab a seat...
  • eliminate penalties - share risks. You only need a master agreement, not many contracts/CRs. Trust-based relationship is key afterall
  • fixed-price contracts won't produce high-quality software- if your focus is quality, why ask your development partner to optimize on cost
  • talent matters - all engineers aren't created equal. If you can, hand-pick the engineers in your offshore team that you trust with your software application and then give them all the freedom (and caffeine)
  • involve them (make 'em think) - don't make every decision for them, instead share what's important for you and have them make those calls. This is the ONLY way to sustain offshoring. Otherwise you'll need daily sync-up with your offshore team members and you're not gonna like it
  • have a few partners and stick with them - having a new organization understand your company, your priorities, your culture takes time. So think hard before adding another development partner in the mix and forget about the 6-month return policy

By the way, inspite of all this the fact is that overall:
  • 60% of our needs are met with offshoring
  • 20% needs a lot of work on both sides
  • and the remaining 20% isn't met

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