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The Top 3 Locations for Outsourcing Software Development

Outsourcing software development has become an increasingly popular path for startups and small businesses alike. Instead of taking on the overhead of hiring employees in house, utilizing a remote workforce allows you to focus on your core business functions while growing at an affordable rate.

When it comes to outsourcing, there are a myriad of options available. One can opt to go Offshore, Nearshore or Onshore in terms of finding a remote workforce. Countries farther away are Offshore, those nearby are considered Nearshore, and Onshore means operating within your own country. Depending on your company’s origin, there are many pros and cons that come with selecting a specific location to outsource your software development needs.

While the U.S. and Canada each have tech reliant economies, the cost associated with doing business there tends to be higher and the demand for skilled workers has resulted in a shortage. Therefore, most businesses are left with the option to take advantage of the resources of a more global market. Here are the top 3 countries for software development in terms of quality and cost:

Latin America

While many South American countries including Peru, Brazil, Colombia and Bolivia are becoming increasingly adept in the tech world, Costa Rica is a popular choice when outsourcing software development work. Their top notch IT programs produce good programmers and their culture has embraced innovation in technology as well as the agile methodology of project management. 

Asia

While India and the Philippines are known for their IT services, China is the leader when it comes to the outsourcing industry in Asia. China produces twice as many graduates as the United States, and as a result has a vast tech advanced work force. Coupled with it’s growing economy, China is a hot bed for outsourcing software development tasks. 

Eastern Europe

In Eastern Europe, Poland and the Ukraine dominate the field of outsourced software development work. Both have an abundance of educated software engineers as a result of rich STEM educational programs. 

Before outsourcing your company’s software development, you’ll want to properly vet each agency to ensure a high quality of work. Take language, cultural barriers and possible travel expenses into account as well. Countries with a stable and supportive government offer a more favorable business climate to operate in, and a difference in time zone could reduce the time to market or make communication difficult. 

At Number8, we help businesses optimize their operations with onshore, nearshore, and offshore outsourcing. Our teams–both foreign and domestic– provide effective communication and service that allow your business to grow at a rate that keeps up with your market. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page here!

Business Process Outsourcing Most Startups Should Consider

Sometimes hiring full time employees can actually slow you down and prevent your business from growing. That’s why so many startups are looking to business process outsourcing for help. Instead of bogging employees down with clerical work, outsourcing could enable your organization to grow faster by focusing it’s talent more on the core of the business.

What is business process outsourcing?

Business process outsourcing (BPO) involves contracting out certain operations and responsibilities that either take place in the back or the front office to a third party.

Responsibilities such as billing, human resources, and finance usually make up the back office or internal business functions of a company. Back office contracted work encompasses the following: purchasing, payment processing, insurance, retirement, hiring and recruiting, accounting, payroll, and general bookkeeping.

Marketing, administrative duties, as well as tech and customer support, are operations usually performed by the front office. These are more external, customer and client related business functions. Any social media, telemarketing, app testing, help desk support, customer interaction via phone or email, scheduling, and data entry that needs to be done would entail front office outsourcing.

Companies can outsource to a variety of locations.

Offshore outsourcing occurs outside a company’s country, nearshore outsourcing is in a neighboring country, and onshore outsourcing happens within one’s own country but out of the state. There are pros and cons depending on the location of the contractor. For example, a dollar can go further in other countries, but time zones and language barriers may prove problematic. 

BPO is a popular startup growth hack in that it saves valuable time and money.

Outsourcing to skilled and flexible personnel allows a burgeoning business to build a team as they need to. This is ideal when compared to time spent searching for and interviewing the right candidates. Contractors are also flexible in regards to workload.  Additionally, they are an affordable solution in terms of benefits and the costs of training as well. Obtaining remote workers through an agency means they are already qualified and require less of a financial investment. 

Both back and front office functions are integral to keeping any company running smoothly. By outsourcing business processing, tasks can be completed with the utmost speed and efficiency. 

At Number8, we help fast growing companies find quality remote workers that creatively contribute to your business’s success. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

5 Things Top Project Managers Do To Stay Organized

project managersProject managers have to juggle the needs of various team members in order to keep the whole machine running towards a company’s eventual goal. It can get very hectic, very quickly, and it’s easy to drop the ball every once and awhile. The thing is, when project managers drop said ball, they are likely setting back the overall project and letting down someone on their team.

To be an effective project manager, you have to be organized. Not JUST organized– we are talking type-A-Virgo-Batman-meets-Leslie-Knope organized. Most of us don’t have those kinds of innate organization skills on our own, though. Here are some of our best tips from top project managers on how they stay organized in order to reach their goals.

Organization Tips for Project Managers

1. Set Milestones and Expectations

Sometimes when you are on a long journey, it’s best to focus on one step at a time. If your team is all working towards a long-term goal, it’s easy for certain members to get ahead of themselves while others may become stuck getting bogged down in the details. Setting weekly or even bi-weekly milestones everyone has to work towards will create a steady pace. It will also encourage others to work as a team.

2. Communicate Often

Even if you work with a remote team, it’s important to talk as a group on a regular basis. Thanks to chat applications, it’s easier than ever to connect with those you work with. While not everybody can be plugged in for the whole 8 hours a day, set aside at least an hour a day where everyone can discuss what they are doing, questions they have, and ideas on how to improve operations.

3. Delegate Tasks

Chances are, there is someone on your team who is dying to take on something that helps them stand apart. Delegating tasks to people on your team is a great way to free up your time so you have more flexibility to address issues as needed.

4. Get Your Least Favorite Task Done First

Every day before you start the rest of your work, evaluate what needs to be done and choose your least favorite task. The first thing you should accomplish is that task. Once you have your least favorite thing completed, the rest of your day is easy in comparison.

5. Encourage Questions

When your team hesitates to ask questions, they’re more likely to complete operations in a way that requires future corrections. Being open and inviting to questions encourages the people you work with to approach you. This can help you and your team correct problems as you go, so you have a more organized process altogether.

At Number8, we help project managers connect with highly trained and efficient IT support to help reach company goals. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

Attracting Tech Talent – Things We Can Learn From 5 Successful Software Firms

successful software firmsGrowing American companies are competing more and more to recruit top tech talent to help with IT and operations. When businesses fail to fulfill their tech talent needs, it can have a serious negative impact on their overall growth as well as research and development. The key to filling these roles isn’t just trying to be the most attractive employer available — it’s also about looking outside the box when finding new hires. These 5 successful software firms do exactly that.

Take these lessons from the successful software firms and their tech talent recruitment techniques to fill your company’s IT needs.

Facebook

When it comes to tech startups, Facebook wrote the book on employee relations and expectations. No, really… excerpts released from their “little red” employee handbook outline the company’s mission, history, and culture to new employees. This company/employee transparency helps foster a sense of inclusion within the business that makes tech talent want to be a part of something bigger.

Buffer

Speaking of transparency, no company does it quite like social media scheduling tool Buffer. From diversity statistics to the CEO’s salary, their operations are an open book. Their commitment to transparency helps facilitate trust among team members in an industry often plagued with backdoor dealings.

Netflix

Netflix is a household product that changed the way we watched movies and television forever. But name recognition isn’t the only thing this company has going for them. Netflix attracts top talent by offering IT workers freedom to be creative in their pursuits within the company. Not only does this help with recruitment, but it’s a great way to make more market disrupting breakthroughs.

Basecamp

Basecamp is a thriving B2B that produces super successful web-based project management as well as customer relationship management tools. On top of giving their employees the the top 5% of software industry salaries, the company places an emphasis on kindness, charity, and community. Basecamp actively encourages its employees to give back in order to have a positive impact on the world.

Etsy

This tech startup helps millions of makers all over the world connect to people interested in their products. The people at Etsy also recruit top tech talent by creating a service-oriented architecture that supports a disciplined continuous delivery process. Engineers see the impact they make in real time, which leads to higher employee satisfaction.

There are a lot of factors that go in to developing successful software firms. As you can see, successful software firms have a wide variety of different approaches to the development and deployment of company standards and what works, works for them! When developing your own business and asking yourself what makes these successful software firms so successful, think about what makes them unique and why people like them. This will help you to determine the best ways to incorporate business practices and create a successful software firm of your own.

At Number8, we connect companies with IT talend and software developers that are fully trained in agile product development. By encouraging talent to come up with creative solutions, they remain motivated and positively contribute to a healthy company culture. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

In a World of Constantly Changing IT, Here are 5 Skills A CIO Needs To Have In Order to Succeed

CIOsUnlike the Chief Financial Officer or Chief Executive Officer, the role of a Chief Information Officer is not so easily defined. Generally, we can assume that the CIO is in charge of all IT aspects within a company. However, CIOs may also be responsible for tasks including creating business value through technology, strategic planning of IT growth objectives, and ensuring that all tech systems and procedures lead to outcomes that are in line with the overall goals of the business.

CIOs typically have a background in IT and software engineering that they use in conjunction with leadership skills to manage the IT team. As a team, the IT department works to develop customer service platforms and team personnel management. The CIO may also negotiate with vendors and work with suppliers for business needs. The scope of the CIO’s job reflects the needs and goals of the business itself.

Top Skills for Successful CIOs

1. They are able to make tough decisions.

Nobody likes making tough decisions, but business leaders know it has to be done in order to help their companies move forward. Not only do they make the decisions, but they do it in a timely manner. A great method is giving yourself a tight deadline to make said decision and trust your gut when it comes to the final result.

2. They are innovative thinkers.

Working in IT requires a lot of logical and mathematical intelligence. However, top CIOs tap into their emotional intelligence to come up with creative ideas and solutions to problems. Innovative thinkers accept that not all answers to questions are absolute. They listen to others and tap into their curiosity.

3. They anticipate technological trends.

When it comes to technology, there’s always something new on the horizon. The trick is figuring out what technological trends are fads and which ones have the power to stick around for the long term. Is the CIO always going to be right? Probably not– but with time and experience they can hone their instincts to anticipate technological trends.

4. They know how to network.

Networking is one of those things in business that can be super polarizing: some people love it, others hate it. Like it or not, it’s the key to growing a business. Top CIOs know how to make connections and how to make others want to connect with them.

5. They encourage teamwork.

Working in IT means dealing with a lot of individual thinkers. Leading an IT department means finding a way to make all those individual thinkers work together. A good CIO knows how to communicate expectations and define responsibilities so their department runs like a well-oiled machine.

At Number8, we help CIOs of fast growing companies find quality remote workers that help with their business IT needs. If you’re interested in adding IT workers with agile development experience to your team, give us a call at (502) 890-7665. You can also learn more about Number8 and our services on our information page.