Top 5 Website Outsourcing Mistakes That Will Cost You Big

by Chris McCrow

There are so many areas around website outsourcing we could talk about, but let’s get specific and talk about the sort of outsourcing equals big ££££££!  That is outsourcing large-scale web development projects, particularly off-shore.

So here they are; our top website outsourcing mistakes:

Outsource And Communicate Remotely

This may work on a small-scale project but almost never works on a large-scale complex system.  Communication is VITAL between project stakeholders and the outsourcing agency, there are just too many barriers when working exclusively through remote channels.  Issues such as time difference between working hours and calls cutting out because of a bad internet connectivity all add up to massively inefficient communication and project workflow.

Automatically Contract With The Lowest Bidder

Don’t get us wrong, if they are capable of doing the project for the quoted amount then BINGO!  But be wary, often rock bottom quotations are not properly analysed beforehand leading to costs inflating mid-project or the contractor running out of money and not delivering.

Skip The Analysis And Planning Phase

Your contractor should have a plan, a precise specification of what will be delivered to you. We use the analogy of building a house, you wouldn’t pay a contractor to build a house without an architectural plan and building specification so don’t do this with a software project.

Some contractors may try to side-step the issue by stating they are ‘agile’, but Agile Software Development is based on an iterative, incremental development process which factors in product evolution and change management. It’s NOT an excuse to undertake a large-scale project with no preparatory work.

For a particularly complex project there are often so many unknowns that it’s impossible to give an accurate quotation without an analysis stage. A good agency will factor in a cost for this before making promises about the cost of full project delivery.

Contract With An Amateur

Never forgot when putting projects out to tender that the web is FULL of amateurs. Mixed in with the professionals you are dealing with a worldwide community of software developers, often with nothing more than a weekend course in Dreamweaver under their belt.  Sure they believe they can do it (and maybe they can) but it’s a massive risk on your part. Do your due diligence!

Poor Preparation

There is a wealth of information on the web from people who have learnt the hard way how to effectively outsource large scale projects. Before jumping in head first learn form their mistakes, take their advice and you’ll save yourself a fortune! But before you go anywhere, check out this article for our top website outsourcing tips.

Need Help Outsourcing A Project?

Bespoke software development is expensive.  Clients are often surprised to find out just how expensive it can be when agencies factor in project management, technical architecture, design, coding, documentation, account management and testing costs. Cost saving is the major advantage to outsourcing.  However any cost saving can be quickly wiped out by an ineffective strategy.  Get in touch now, we’d love to hear about your project and discuss how we can help.

3 comments on “Top 5 Website Outsourcing Mistakes That Will Cost You Big

  • Avatar for Chris McCrow
    Chris Richardson says:

    Having worked for an outsource agency in Manila I can speak from the other side of the coin.

    A common mistake I have experienced is clients outsourcing projects / processes and then thinking they can completely step out, expecting the outsource agency to completely run that part of their business for them! Sure we can take a lot of the burden off but the most successful outsourcing examples I have seen is always a partnership where we get regular feedback about our performance from clients.

  • Avatar for Chris McCrow

    Thanks Chris, Great tips.

    Another common mistake which can cause problems is under budgeting. Remember the cost of outsourcing is not just to the outsourcing agency but also in your company’s time to manage the relationship, drawing up legal contracts etc.

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