5 Tips for Successful Outsourced Software Development

5 Tips to Successfully Outsource Your Software

Outsourcing software development can offer numerous benefits for your startup, such as cost savings, access to skilled professionals, and faster project completion. However, to ensure a successful outsourcing partnership, it’s essential to follow best practices and avoid common pitfalls. 

In this blog post, we’ll outline the five most important tips for successful outsourced software development, along with common mistakes to avoid. Each section will finish with top recommended tools or services to help you accomplish each tip.

1. Define clear project requirements and scope

Before outsourcing your software development, create a detailed project specification document that outlines your objectives, requirements, and scope. This will help your outsourcing partner understand your expectations and deliver the desired results.

Mistake to avoid: 

  • Avoid vague, incomplete, or constantly changing project requirements, as this can lead to miscommunication, delays, and increased costs.
  • Ensure that you are building your scope to your business needs. Specifically in building MVPs, one of the most common mistakes founders will make is trying to build too much rather than focusing purely on the business need, which at the MVP stage is to solely test your solution hypothesis.

Recommended tools/services:

  • Google Docs/ Microsoft Word: Use these tools to create a detailed project specification document that can be shared and edited collaboratively with your outsourcing partner.
  • Lucidchart/Draw.io: These tools enable you to create flowcharts, diagrams, or wireframes to visually represent your project requirements and scope.

2. Choose the right outsourcing partner

Look for an outsourcing partner with a proven track record, relevant expertise, and strong communication skills. Conduct thorough research, check references, and evaluate their portfolio before making a decision on who to hire for your outsourced software development team.

Mistake to avoid: 

  • Don’t rush into a partnership or make a decision based solely on cost. A low-cost provider may not always deliver quality results, which could end up costing you more in the long run.
  • Ensure that you vet multiple options before choosing your provider.

Recommended tools/services:

  • Aloa: This is an end-to-end service, helping you first find the right team to work, with giving you the tools to manage and pay them, as well as conducting performance reviews to ensure quality.
  • Upwork/Toptal: These platforms allow you to search for and evaluate software development outsourcing partners based on their skills, expertise, and reviews from previous clients.
  • Clutch: This B2B review platform provides in-depth information on software development companies, including client reviews and testimonials, to help you make an informed decision.

3. Establish effective communication channels

Set up regular check-ins and updates with your outsourcing partner to ensure the project stays on track and to address any issues promptly. Use project management tools and communication platforms, such as Slack or Trello, to streamline collaboration.

Mistake to avoid: 

  • Don’t rely solely on email for communication, as important messages can be missed or delayed. Implement multiple communication channels to ensure a smooth flow of information.
  • Ensure that you clearly articulate how quickly you can expect a reply as well as what are the agreed upon working hours to where you can expect a reply (i.e. a message at 2pm on a Wednesday versus 9pm on a Saturday).

Recommended tools/services:

  • Slack/Microsoft Teams: These communication platforms facilitate real-time messaging and collaboration, making it easier to stay connected with your outsourcing partner.
  • Trello/Asana: Use these project management tools to organize tasks, set deadlines, and monitor progress, ensuring that your project stays on track.

4. Monitor progress and provide feedback

Actively monitor the progress of your outsourced software development project and provide feedback to your outsourcing partner. This will help them make any necessary changes and ensure the final product meets your expectations.

Mistake to avoid: 

  • Avoid being hands-off and assuming everything will be taken care of by your outsourcing partner. Regular involvement and feedback are crucial to ensuring a successful project outcome.
  • Don’t let descriptions of the tasks solely be technical. Allow for anyone on the team to be able to understand where your progress is at.

Recommended tools/services:

  • GitHub/GitLab: These version control platforms allow you to track code changes, review code quality, and provide feedback to your outsourcing partner.
  • Jira/ClickUp: These project management tools enable you to set milestones, track progress, and provide feedback on completed tasks, ensuring that your project is delivered according to your expectations.

5. Protect your intellectual property (IP)

Establish clear IP ownership and confidentiality agreements with your outsourcing partner to protect your valuable assets. Consult with a legal professional to ensure your contracts are comprehensive and enforceable.

Mistake to avoid: 

  • Don’t overlook the importance of protecting your IP, as failure to do so can result in costly legal disputes and loss of your competitive advantage.
  • Don’t let the team you work with own any of the accounts. You should always be the owner and invite users to your accounts (i.e. servers, code repositories, etc.).

Recommended tools/services:

  • LegalZoom/Rocket Lawyer: These online legal services can help you draft and review IP ownership and confidentiality agreements to protect your valuable assets.
  • Consult with a legal professional: Seek the advice of a legal professional specializing in intellectual property law to ensure your contracts are comprehensive and enforceable.


By following these five tips and avoiding common mistakes, you can successfully outsource your software development and reap the benefits of a productive and cost-effective partnership. Remember, effective communication, thorough planning, and active involvement are key to ensuring your project’s success and achieving your desired outcomes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *