In part 1, we discussed three major issues that typically arise with outsourcing to a provider from a distant location, otherwise known as offshoring – missed connections when defining the problem, contractors simply throwing more bodies at the situation, and the customer needing to spend valuable time “helping the helpers”.
SOUTHWORKS has been providing nearshore software development services for almost 20 years, and during that time we’ve put a lot of consideration and energy into developing a set of working principles geared towards eliminating the issues you’re likely to encounter with the average offshore provider. These principles form an approach that we call Development on Demand.
Here’s how Development on Demand helps our customers achieve their goals:
1. No hidden costs
As we mentioned in part one, allowing contractors to throw more bodies at the problem, and having to deploy your own internal resources to micromanage their work or do part of it for them, are both hidden costs that defeat the point of bringing in external resource to begin with. SOUTHWORKS eliminates these costs by focusing on our customers’ needs, working methodically in short burst sprints that address one challenge at a time before moving onto the next. This avoids the risk of over-staffing projects because we’re clear on the problem we’re solving and always moving in the right direction. Another way we avoid hidden costs is by not passing our costs onto customers. Part of our value proposition is that we’ll provide a highly skilled three-person Fireteam that’s prepared for the job at hand, so we don’t charge extra for any tools or training they may need.
2. No handholding
At SOUTHWORKS, we pride ourselves on being the help that doesn’t need help. Sometimes with offshore providers, communication issues can arise due to cultural differences or a limited overlap in working hours. Having evolved as a remote-first company delivering nearshore, we’ve learned how to keep things progressing while communicating with our customers about what we’re doing, what issues we’re having, and what we’ll do next if we don’t hear otherwise. This communication builds trust, keeping the project moving in the right direction and on budget. We always aim to put our best foot forward, which means working independently, seeking regular feedback, and reprioritizing our work where needed to tackle the right tasks. Meanwhile our customers have a full overview of the project, without needing to hold our hands through the process.
3. No do-overs
Because we check in regularly with customers, work in short one-week sprints, and test frequently, we can be sure that we're always focusing on the right things – so we'll never have to change course or completely undo what we’ve been working on and start again. For us, it’s important to get it right first time. If the customer rethinks the priorities for a project, it’s always easy to change course if we have to because it’s never been more than a week since we last spoke. Short bursts and regular communication, aided by time-zone affinity to ensure that there's always a good amount of overlap in our office hours, help our customers avoid the need for costly do-overs.
4. No long-term contracts
Development on Demand involves deploying SOUTHWORKS's elite Fireteams on a week-by-week basis. Unlike many large offshore providers, we don’t want to keep our team hanging around any longer than the customer needs them, and we never try to upsell unnecessary coders, management, or services. Whenever the scope of the job does change though, we have the flexibility to scale up or down on demand, providing the exact workforce that’s needed to get the job done. We also understand that there might be a pause or changeover between projects so we don’t expect that once we’re in, the customer will just keep us around for the sake of it. This allows us to offer all the best features of both traditional offshore consultancies and boutiques – services at scale with a white glove experience, but without long-term contracts.
5. No overhead
Our value proposition is that we’ll provide a highly skilled three-person Fireteam that’s prepared for the job at hand, so we don’t charge extra for any PMs, Delivery Manager, and things like that. With our Transparent Pricing™, we aim to equip our clients with fine control to only use SOUTHWORKS when they need us enables our customers to budget in a more controlled way and avoid the risk that comes with taking on new long-term costs. This means that on the one hand, they have access to a resource that is versatile and scalable – but on the other, they’re not stuck with it.
6. No surprises
We know that surprises aren’t always bad – a surprise party or an unexpected visit from a friend are wonderful things – but part of our promise to our customers is that they won’t have any surprises at all when it comes to their dev engine. When we work on a project, we want the customer to know exactly what to expect in terms of price, engagement length, and the eventual outcome. In other words, we want to be predictable (predictably excellent, in fact) and this gives us the edge over typical offshore consultancies, who often seek long-term contracts, move the goalposts mid-project, or attempt to solve issues by bringing in more workforce.
With our customers increasingly operating as smart, technology-centric businesses, Development on Demand is our way of meeting their needs to help them accelerate and grow. We've been refining this way of working for nearly two decades, and thanks to this journey we’re fully confident in our ability to get things right the first time while offering flexible and scalable quality.
Want to learn more about how Development on Demand eliminates the typical problems associated with offshoring to deliver meaningful value for our customers? Get in touch and we'll gladly fill you in.