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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!

7 Mistakes to Avoid Working with Remote Employees

remote employeesThe modern office is more than four walls and a parking lot. With the help of technology, a team can reach all corners of the world and still connect in order to create a product or service that helps a company reach its goals. Of course, collaborating with remote employees is a pretty novel endeavor. There is plenty of room for miscommunications and hiccups that can stall a project’s progress. When working with remote employees, it’s best to anticipate possible issues before they come up so you know how to address them just in case.

Here is some of our favorite advice on mistakes to avoid when working with remote employees.

1. Not Having an Onboarding Process

Your onboarding process sets the tone for every employee and informs them of your goals and expectations as a project manager. It also gives you the opportunity to lay out any organizational tips you wish to pass on to help with operations. When you are working with a large team in various places, you may not all be on the same page at all times. But if you have a steady and consistent onboarding process, you can at least make sure all remote workers are reading the same book.

2. Letting Them Wing It

Anyone who has gotten in an argument over text messages knows how miscommunications through technology are possible. When it comes to managing remote workers, the more structure and communication you can provide them, the better. Instead of telling them what you want and letting them wing it, you are better off telling them what you want, when you want it, and the steps you need them to take in order to accomplish said task.

3. Ignoring Time Zones

It’s easy to forget that the people on the other side of the screen are just that… people. When you ignore time zones and demand crazy hours from remote employees, you are more likely to get haphazard results from resentful employees. If you aren’t willing to wait 24 hours for a response from a remote worker, you are better off finding someone in a time zone that is no more than 2 hours different than yours.

4. Micromanaging

Wait… but didn’t we just tell you to give them step-by-step instructions on what to get done? Being thorough with your project direction and micromanaging are not the same things. People hire remote workers as a way to delegate more nitty gritty work to qualified professionals so they get to focus on the big picture. If you are spending too much time instructing your remote team on every second of their processes, you are neglecting to truly take advantage of their talent. As a project manager, it is up to you to find the right balance between giving enough instruction and being too hands-on.

5. Separating On-Campus and Remote Staff

Even if you have only a handful of remote employees, your team won’t work at its highest capacity if they do not feel included. Make sure there is open communication between everyone involved. Do not  separate your general instructions based on who lives where. It may also help to have everyone run through a team building exercise once or twice a month to help build cohesiveness and improve communication.

6.  Not Offering Incentives

Managers often use incentives as a way to encourage team members to go the extra mile to reach company goals. Just because you have team members working remotely doesn’t mean they should be exempt from such rewards.

7. Being Too Casual

When you work in IT or development, there is a general relaxed atmosphere that comes with the territory. When you communicate via calls or chat, it is easy to let that relaxation turn into overt casualness. Remember: you are a leader and this is a business. As a project manager, you still have to exude an overall professional demeanor in order to demand respect.

At Number 8, we help companies connect with qualified remote employees to help with nearshore software development. We also focus on helping companies improve their internal IT processes. 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!

 

Top U.S. Tech Cities – 5 Traits They Have In Common

top u.s. tech citiesAmazon has been making waves across the United States as the e-commerce giant searches for a new city to be the home of its next campus. This past January, the company announced the finalists in consideration including Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, Philadelphia, Raleigh, and Washington D.C. These top U.S. tech cities that made the list are all great for their own individual reasons, but the majority of them have the common thread of being top U.S. tech cities already. Going over the list, we’ve deduced these common traits between them and how they help contribute to tech hub status.

What do these Top U.S. Tech Cities Have in Common?

Room for Talent

If you want to draw tech talent to your city, you have to have jobs to employ them. U.S. tech cities thrive because they open up opportunities for employment for people working in the sector. It’s simple supply and demand.

Pro-Immigration

While Jeff Bezos may not have had immigration in mind when coming up with finalists, all of the cities chosen employ a pro-immigrant attitude. Statistics show that a higher share of foreign-born residents experience increased economic output, higher wages and higher income levels. While we can only speculate about why that is, there is something to be said about a civic attitude. Especially one that is open to new people and the new ideas that come with them.

The Right Residential Infrastructure

When looking for cities to move to, people are attracted to a mix of convenience and style– the perfect elements for a modern lifestyle. Gone are the days of suburban sprawl. Nowadays, we want to be closer to the city and where the action is. Top U.S. tech town embrace this by supporting infrastructure that makes residential room in the heart of the city.

Environmentally Friendly Attitudes

People in the tech sector are growing ever more conscious of their lifestyle and its impact on the environment. Cities that attract people in the industry employ resources that allow citizens to live a greener lifestyle without sacrificing comfort. Providing things like community bike programs and citywide recycling are some ways top tech towns appeal to the environmentally friendly.

A Frontier Attitude

Silicon Valley blew up because it attracted people who saw the area as an opportunity to make it their own. That frontier attitude is essentially American– we want to strike out on our own and find success our own way. Cities that embrace such a mindset draw mavericks from around the world and inspire growth as well as innovation.

No matter which city your company calls home, Number8 can help your business connect to top tech talent. If you want to learn more about our consulting process and why we are the perfect offshore software development company to help you reach your company’s goals, then give us a call at (502) 890-7665 today!

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!