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Choosing the right custom software development supplier. Tips for success

In today’s economic environment you would be hard pressed to find a company that doesn’t rely on some form of software to run their operations. In this article we’ll be going over some tips on choosing the right custom software development supplier.

As Watts S. Humphrey once said, “Every business is a software business.”. Which means that you can’t really have success as a business without quality software. So, what do you do when you need a good software solution?

Some companies choose to go for an out-of-the box solution. And while they are right for certain business objectives, a lot of the times they are not enough for the specifics of an organization. A custom solution that takes into account your needs and challenges has a better chance of helping you improve productivity, make your business processes more efficient and create better experiences for your clients.

And the first step in this journey is choosing the right custom software development supplier. Here are some tips for success

Objectives, resources and timeframes

“One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. ‘Which road do I take?’ she asked. ‘Where do you want to go?’ was his response. ‘I don’t know,’ Alice answered. ‘Then,’ said the cat, ‘it doesn’t matter.”

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

As the Cheshire cat so eloquently put it, having a direction is the most important thing in your project. Think about what you want your software solution to do? Does it need to be created from scratch or updated? Do you have to connect it to other systems you use in your company or is it stand alone?

These are just some of the questions you need to answer before you start looking for a software development supplier. In addition to the questions above, you also need to consider how big your budget is and whether you are looking for a fixed price model or an hourly fee. We strongly recommend the second one.

And last but not least, have an idea with regard to when you want to start implementing the software solution. Tight deadlines mean either increased costs or a software that lacks quality. Remember, like with anything else you buy when it comes to software development you have fast, good and cheap. But you can only pick two.

Company expertise

Talk to the company about the projects it has been involved in. Have they developed software for industries similar to the one you are active in? Or worked with companies that had the same needs as you have when it comes to software?

Do they have experience in updating software, not just in developing it? Do they also offer extra services such as software testing or teaching your employees how to work with the new solution? Many times, people forget that you also have to know how to work with the software not just develop and implement it.

In addition, you can also think about the future. Like offering maintenance services so you can fix any potential issues that might appear along the way.

Check online reviews

And by this we don’t mean stuff like Google Reviews. Any provider worth their salt is going to have a profile on trusted industry review sites such as Clutch or GoodFirms. Not only are these reviews checked by these websites so you know they are authentic, but you also get access to a lot of information about the technologies a supplier works with, an estimate about how much they charge and more.

This allows you pick a partner with expertise and in a price range that is comfortable for you.

Location, location, location

The location of your supplier is a critical aspect for your product success. There’s no sense in hiring a team from half way round the globe because they are within your budget only to discover that there are challenges when it comes to company culture and the way you communicate with them.

Make sure that you choose a business that has collaborated with other companies from your region or time zone and that the development team is able to communicate with you in your language.

Time zone is another factor. Not a lot of people think about this, but having a big time difference between client and supplier can lead to mistakes and delays in the software development project. As a rule, make sure that the difference is no more than 2 to 4 hours.

How to start your custom software development project?

At QTeam we have developed custom software solutions for start-ups and large organizations, and we can do the same for you. You can book a free 60 minute consulting session with us and we can talk about your software needs.