5 Things To Keep In Mind When Working With A Third-Party Development Team
Working with a third-party development team offers several benefits for businesses, often opening up new opportunities for growth and development. At the same time, however, it comes with some challenges and risks.
The good news is that there are some things your team can do to minimize risks, making sure you get the most out of your development team. Here are some tips to help ensure that you have a good experience working with your development team while producing a finished product that meets your business’s needs.
Thoroughly Screen Your Team Before Hiring
This might sound like an obvious first step, but it’s so vital that it’s worth addressing in-depth. When hiring a third-party development team, you want to confirm that it has the expertise and experience to complete the entire scope of your project. At the same time, you want to make sure that the third-party team is reliable and a good fit for your internal team. This means that you can effectively communicate with the team, even if there are time zone issues or language barriers.
To do this, you should look at previous projects, check the team’s certifications, and talk with multiple references. It’s also a good idea to do a test project to help evaluate their work and communication style.
The bottom line is that you need a team with the expertise to complete your project effectively, but you also need a team that will be responsive to your requests, that you’re able to communicate with, and that works well with your team. This is critical to the success of your project, so it’s well worth taking extra time to screen and evaluate your development team before signing a contract.
Make Sure the Team Understands Your Business
Once you’ve selected a team, it’s essential to spend some time introducing them to your business. Hopefully, you’ve already given them a good introduction to your business during the interview process, and you can simply build on that foundation as you tackle the project in more depth.
Your development team needs to understand what your business does, its goals, and the ultimate “why” behind the project. Having a good foundation in what drives the business and the project will lead to a better-finished product.
With this in mind, take some time to explain your business, introduce your team, discuss your customers, and talk in-depth about the project assigned to the development team. This will lead to a better working relationship and better outcomes.
Have Clear Expectations and Requirements From Day 1
The best way to make sure that your team meets project goals is to be clear about those objectives from the outset. You don’t want the team guessing or making assumptions about what you need.
Instead, give them a clear project and design specs, outlining the full scope of the project, including measurable milestones and a timeline for the project. Supplement these requirements with regular check-ins and deadlines to ensure that you’re on the same page and that the project is progressing on schedule.
The more thorough your requirements and expectations, the more smoothly your project will run. Hopefully, this will let you avoid frustration and wasted time from miscommunications about a project.
Know Who Is Going to Be Accountable
If you’re working with a third-party team, it’s essential to identify the stakeholders as well as who is accountable for the project. Often, companies will work with contractual developers that come and go from projects. This can make consistency, accountability, and communication challenges.
To avoid this, the development team’s decision-makers should be involved in all check-ins, meetings, and emails and be knowledgeable about the team’s progress. No matter how the team is structured or staffed, you need to know who is accountable for the short and long-term progress and who will serve as a point person for communication, questions, concerns, and updates.
Make Sure You Have a Thorough Contract
While you hope that everything goes well with your third-party development team, it’s essential to enter into a thorough contract with them before beginning any work to minimize risks. The contract should define the scope of work and the payment structure. In addition, it should include:
- An intellectual property clause to ensure that your business has all rights to the project
- A confidentiality agreement to protect any proprietary information shared with the team
- An indemnity clause to address risk responsibility between your business and the development team
- A termination clause in the event the project is not adequately completed
- A jurisdiction clause, as this is something that can be complicated when working with international teams
Having a good contract is one of the best ways to reduce the risks of working with a third-party team, so it’s essential to work with in-house counsel or your company’s outside attorney to make sure you have one in place before the project starts.
Looking for an Easier Way to Hire Developers?
While a third-party development team can be an excellent way to meet your business’s development needs, it also comes with some unique challenges, risks, and demands. So, if you’re looking for an easier way to build your team or tackle a big project, we’ve got one.
At Upstack, we’ve done all of the hard work and have vetted developers ready to get started working for your team. Contact us to learn more or to begin building your team now.
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Originally published at upstack.co on Nov 3, 2021, by Charlie Harper.