Elevated standard of living Regular exercise and Agile software development have a great deal in common; both are widely recognised as essential elements of modern life. Whilst there is an abundance of evidence supporting their importance, both require a great deal of self-discipline in order to be effectively implemented.
Outsourcing software development can bring a range of strategic benefits to companies, such as cost savings, access to a larger pool of talented professionals and the ability to scale up or down resources quickly without drawn-out recruitment processes. Here are four specific ways in which outsourcing can enhance a business’s software development procedures:
Why It’s Important to Collaborate on Paperwork
It is common for numerous issues to arise when working in teams on projects. People may become experts in specific areas, yet this can lead to them becoming isolated from the rest of the group. As a result, there is either little or no accompanying documentation. Although this can lead to inventive solutions, it also increases the chances of ‘winging it’. Despite this, it is still possible to produce high quality outcomes. Nevertheless, this also raises the possibility of failure and the ensuing technical debt and associated risks.
By default, our team undertakes a comprehensive evaluation of the existing technology and tools, the procedures that engineers undertake during the project (from signing into a repository to pushing code to production), and the features and functionality of the product. The primary aim of this work is to create a record that can be used to inform any future developments.
In order to eliminate any obstacles that may exist between different areas of expertise, we have implemented conventions for architecture and tools, and redistributed responsibilities accordingly. As a result of this, we have created various documents that can be shared with other colleagues, such as papers, web pages, whiteboards and even Slack channels.
Outsourcing IT services offers a multitude of advantages to organisations. These include enhanced efficiency for the IT department, as well as an easier process for onboarding new employees or contractors. These added benefits are exclusive to those who choose to outsource their IT services.
Key Performance Indicators and Future Performance (KPIs)
At the beginning of any new project with a fresh team, our primary focus is to gain an understanding of their desired outcomes. Although we have our own set of standard Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) we are aware that each project and each organisation have individual objectives that are derived from the nature of the difficulties they are looking to resolve and the environment in which they are working.
Despite the potential for the raising of contrasting viewpoints, it may lead to a beneficial re-assessment of current Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) or the introduction of entirely new ones. As outsourcing involves the relinquishing of a certain amount of control, we are often put under greater pressure to demonstrate that we are capable of meeting, or even exceeding, the standards set by in-house teams in the given timeframe or with the quality we offer.
Engaging in this conversation could be beneficial in terms of discovering new Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) which are better suited to the current project, product or organisational objectives and strategy. Additionally, the sharing of KPIs with an external entity has the potential to enhance the display of data through the use of dashboards or other technological solutions, even when the KPIs remain the same and are applied to external teams.
Identifying Potential Cybersecurity Risks
Despite being a commonly held misbelief, outsourcing does not often lead to increased security and privacy worries in actual business practices. Our research has revealed that taking this approach can prompt a thorough examination of existing practices, and consequently provide an opportunity to implement new precautions and guidelines which will make the organisation more resistant to external risks.
For example, in highly regulated environments, only a select few employees are granted access to confidential personal data. If a team is using live data to carry out software testing, then it is possible that the expansion of the team through outsourcing could lead to an increased risk of security breaches and compliance issues.
An evaluation of the testing procedures employed may reveal that the team’s reliance on this method is a result of a lack of code coverage, automation, or separation of concerns. In such a case, obfuscation could be utilised to deliver more reliable test results. Outsourcing could provide the impetus for necessary improvements to alleviate the burden of technological debt.
As a result of outsourcing, remote access to resources is essential. This presents a great opportunity to audit all endpoints to confirm that suitable security controls, policies, and processes have been put in place. Even for internal networks, least privilege and zero trust principles are becoming increasingly commonplace; outsourcing could provide the impetus to implement such policies across the entire organisation.
It is essential for any business to take the necessary steps to guarantee security when remote teams, either external or internal, are accessing the company’s resources. The strategic use of outsourcing services is a beneficial measure that can help a business to achieve its desired outcome.
Piles Have Been Tidied Up
At present, the projects and plans for the coming year are being finalised and initiated. However, when the product plan exceeds the actual capacity, a rush to fill the gap can occur. Even if the best onboarding process is implemented, if the backlog is not appropriately managed before commencing, all the hard work will be in vain. Although the executives may have an understanding of the overall strategic product objectives, it is when these objectives are broken down into a set of manageable tasks that the true challenge lies.
Many of our clients rely heavily on our software to carry out their primary business operations, however software development is not their key area of expertise. Consequently, company owners may find themselves having to take on the role of software development without having received the necessary training or previous experience in an Agile software development environment. This lack of knowledge or understanding can prove to be a major obstacle when outsourcing engineering operations is used as a means to increase efficiency.
At Works, we not only provide experienced software engineers, but also experienced Agile product owners. Our product owners are able to take business challenges and the value propositions of end-users and translate these into epics and user stories. These stories can then be broken down into manageable tasks by our engineers, eventually producing high-quality, usable software.
When a business opts to outsource software development, they are afforded the opportunity to access the expertise of an experienced partner. This allows them to not only expand their capacity to execute their strategies, but also gain valuable insight into the industry and identify opportunities to introduce more effective systems and processes.