14/06/2018

How to save your budget for software development?

Today's software development market is dominated by internet and mobile applications.

Today's software development market is dominated by internet and mobile applications. The cost of building them is growing due to the fact that new technologies are constantly emerging and the complexity of requirements set by the clients is increasing. However, there are several ways to reduce the budget for software development.

Consider to outsource the development

You may ask: why is outsourcing worth my attention? There are many reasons why it may be rewarding. I will give you some examples:

  • Flexibility - from the point of view of the risk associated with the current global economy, companies need the ability to rapidly expand or reduce. Unfortunately, this is not always in line with employee law. Thanks to outsourcing, companies avoid the risk and are able to immediately adapt to rising or slowing demand.
  • Cost reduction - as an old saying goes, it’s all about the money. The fact is that most companies wouldn’t delegate jobs overseas if it wasn’t cost-effective. Lower wages are a huge factor when outsourcing, and it is one of the main reasons why companies choose to outsource to other countries.
  • Access to skilled resources - access to a group of professionals. Remote specialists often outweigh the experience and knowledge of employees that you could employ on a full-time basis.

Use Agile methodology

In all aspects of product manufacturing and project management, which Agile is all about, man will always play the main role. Starting from Agile Manifesto, in which the interaction between people and cooperation with the client, as well as empowering team members to make decisions are the key to success. It sounds like an perfect idea, but the question is - how to make people working in the project actually motivated and committed to their tasks? You guessed it right, Agile is the answer. But how to do it? I’ll show you what the process flow of this method looks like:

  • Concept - projects are envisioned and prioritized,
  • Inception - team members are identified, funding is put in place, and initial environments and requirements are discussed, 
  • Iteration(sprint)/Construction - the development team works to deliver working software based on iteration requirements and feedback,
  • Release - QA (Quality Assurance) testing, internal and external training, documentation development, and final release of the iteration into production,
  • Production - ongoing support of the software,
  • Retirement - end-of-life activities, including customer notification and migration.

This shows the full Agile lifecycle model within the enterprise. Its focus is to adapt to change and deliver working software as quickly as possible. I encourage you to read more about Agile in our post: “Why is it good to be Agile”.

Clear requirements and user stories (business plan for your software goals)

Goals and objectives are achieved in every company, in every industry. But if managers approach it badly, they only demotivate their employees and reduce their productivity. Goals determine where to go and state when you should get there. The more exactly you define your goals, the greater the chance for you to meet them. Objectives very important for two reasons. They define what you need - and when. So in conclusion: goals tell you where you want to go; objectives tell you exactly how to get there. But what does the user have to do with it? It turns out - a lot. The client knows exactly what the developers he hired for the project work on. In addition, all information about the project such as: functionality, how many hours of work each feature is expected to take, how long it will take to complete the project and how much he will pay for it. The client knows exactly that we understand what is required from us. Nowadays the choice of applications is so huge that users often choose applications which providers  listen to them, showing that they care about their users.

Prioritization

When we set goals, we can move on to planning, or writing down a list of tasks that we have to do. Having a list of tasks to be done, you must define your priorities. You have to determine what the most important thing to do is and which ones have a direct impact on achieving the goal. Prioritization helps you manage the budget well to release the MVP as soon as possible. Prioritization helps you decide what features you can opt out of, and and which ones are crucial for  the application be released to the market. This is another reason for outsourcing - even if you don’t have any idea about prioritization, software houses will do it for you. They have a lot of experience of working on projects, and they know very well how to plan out the work and let you distribute your budget wisely. As you can see, setting priorities right helps to accelerate the achievement of goals and increase the efficiency of work, and thus reduce production costs.

Final word

To top it all, you should always make sure that the software house tests your application so that the product you get works and is reliable. Outsourcing, Agile Methodology, user stories, prioritization and test automation – these are your musts to make sure you utilise your budget well.

CSO
Michał pursues success and growth with the determination of a shark and optimism of a Golden Retriever. He looks for new clients, but he prefers to call them partners. A huge fan of NBA and business-related books.

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