The hunt for top tier development talent is a major challenge for early stage startup founders. If you are a technical co-founder bootstrapping your way through the early stages of product development, your recruitment options are typically very limited. Hiring separate full-time, in-house resources for both frontend and backend development can be brutally expensive. Although there are plenty of remote hiring options available in the U.S., chances are that you just might not be able to afford $100/hour senior level developers.
Offshoring has emerged as a very viable, even necessary, alternative to support startup product development. But just like any other outsourced venture, offshoring software development is not without risks.
Common issues that founders face with offshoring:
- Sizable gaps in communication due to cultural differences, time differences, language barriers and lack of real-time collaboration
- Code quality can be less than stellar
- No real comprehension of either the technical or end-game vision of the project owner leading to unproductive cycles, delays, and increased cost
Any potential cost advantage is quickly lost in the inefficiency.
Startup owners have to realize that, to be effective, offshoring must be viewed and carried out as a structured business process. When done properly, offshoring will absolutely drive small business growth. The lower cost option can be an incredible advantage for startup firms if they are able to minimize the risks associated with it. So, if you are constrained by budget, how can you utilize offshoring to recruit top talent and launch a top-tier startup product?
Structured Vetting Process
Only opt for developers that have completed a very thorough recruitment process. You have to rely on a staffing partner with structured and meaningful technical and communication skills screening. Review the entire process yourself and evaluate the offshore talent based on your criteria.
- Do their coding skills match your startup’s development stack?
- Do they thoroughly understand your vision for the product and its development requirements?
- What is their level of professionalism with communicating possible hurdles and collaborating on deadlines?
- Do they simply complete tasks or do they make a meaningful contribution to the project? Can they adjust to one or the other based on the specific needs at that time?
Onshore Support System
For a team to maximize productivity, your offshoring partner simply must have an active presence in the U.S., not just an address. It is quickly becoming well known that the most successful partnerships are found with offshore service providers working hybrid onshore-offshore support team models. It allows for complete transparency and accountability of your product development; not only from a productivity and quality standpoint, but also from a non-disclosure and legal protections perspective. It also facilitates a much more productive environment for both the front-line developer and the client.
Vast Scalability Options
The ultimate goal of a structured offshoring system is:
Leverage Scalability via Reduced Costs >> Get Your Product to Market and Become Profitable Quickly
With a technically strong, fully vetted development team, you can easily scale your product engineering. For the same cost, you can build a bigger, better product than you can with in-house development. You will also be able to launch your startup much faster and invest more on infrastructure with the reduced cost advantage of offshoring.
Vision needs talent and talent requires money. A good offshore partner can open doors for your business that are simply not available otherwise. Products and ideas get to market faster, businesses grow, and American jobs are added. These are very real advantages to capitalizing on the offshore option. Make sure you are working with a high-caliber offshore partner and the potential is limitless.