How to choose the right software house for your project

Magdalena Oleksy | 3 Jul | 7 min read

We appreciate that choosing a software developer to come on board with your project can be a daunting task. After all, there are 1000’s of companies out there, all promising to be the best but how can you be sure that the team you’re collaborating with will be just what your project needs? We understand your dilemma and so we’ve put together the ultimate ‘How To’ guide below to help you sort through the masses to find your dream software house.

1: Quality over Quantity, always!

Everything has a price and yet, some developers might offer the world for next to nothing and who doesn’t enjoy a good deal? But software development is one area in which it pays to be picky. Have you ever bought a cheap phone or TV only to have it malfunction within a few weeks, or how about that $1 phone charging cable you bought in the discount store which fell to pieces the second you plugged it in? We’ve all been there, so we know that ultimately quality costs money and time.

 When you pay for a little when you need a lot, you may end up with large fees to pay to actually buy the source code outright. Often with budget software houses, you can end up having to lease the code from the developer, something that’s not always clear until the project is finalised. 

Of course, when commencing a project communication is key, and a low-cost option may leave you without sufficient information regarding the direction of your project. Bargain developers can also often lack basic English skills or work from an offshoring team, meaning your project may suffer from inadequate testing, an absence of formal documents or in the worst case, a faulty software package.

2: The best output comes from a true collaboration.

Collaboration with others is one of the best ways to allow your business to grow and prosper. An essential factor of a great working partnership is the ability to work closely. This means you should feel comfortable in setting out clear objectives and seeking clarity on the work to be carried out. Starting off with clear instructions about what you want from the venture will inspire great communication and increase the chances of a positive outcome. 

Any collaboration should mean both parties are on the same page and have complementary ideas about where the project needs to head.  Making sure to research your prospective partner organisation well will allow you to understand the make-up of their teams. Should you require a dedicated project team, you can know if they can offer this scale of work.  Transparent, direct and flexible communication is the foundation of any healthy relationship. 

3:  The SCRUM framework and agility model is the key to evolving.

The framework of SCRUM in agile software development project management puts at its core, the continuous evaluation of the project to enable teams to reflect upon successes and failures. By learning from experiences, teams can manage their workload and processes and adapt their time scale to rapidly changing requirements.

Based on the idea of a rugby scrum, where the team come together at many points throughout a game to bounce ideas off each other and reformulate their game plan based on the evolving dynamics of their match, SCRUM project management is different from other agile processes in software development, as it’s specifically for complex software and product development needs. 

Scrum provides the framework through which a project can be conducted, it offers a basic structure for meetings and formulates the agile processes to encourage self-organisation, responsibility and frequent inspection and modification of the development process. Verifying that your software house utilises the agile SCRUM software development management process will safeguard the time box of your project’s goals.

4: Experience speaks for itself.

So now you know that a good quality software house will lay the foundation for your project and you are aware of the importance of open communication within the SCRUM framework, it’s time to explore how you can pick out a company that exhibits all these qualities. The saying ‘Jack of all trades; master of none’ exists for a reason. You may visit the website of a company to find they have a breadth of experience across entire industries but selecting a specialised software provider with a portfolio to suit your needs will empower you to drive your project forward with confidence.

Websites like cluch.co, Google+ and even the Facebook page of the software house in question can be the best way to find out the experiences of their previous customers. Utilise all the resources you can in the search for recommendations as choosing a software house to come on board with your project has the capacity to transform your potential.

Do you want to be working with a close-knit team that’s in your time-zone or would you rather a big brand name that can offer you a luxury package? If it’s a long-term project, choosing a company that has experience in your field that you feel comfortable communicating with can be all it takes to provide perfect execution of your vision. 

5: Continuous deployment will keep your project afloat!

It really will! Continuous or frequent deployment means delivering your software in smaller doses, enabling it to be released as and when needed. With continuous deployment, your chosen software house will be putting your product ahead of competitors by safeguarding your software against errors and risks, ultimately offering the best user experience.

Just like when cooking, when you add the ingredients slowly to avoid making mistakes, continuous deployment means making smaller changes and continuously making each release of software easy to taste and even easier to mend should there be any hiccups. When technology was in its infancy, we all had moments when a software update would leave us completely lost on our device until we learned the new layout, and so continuous deployment protects your clients against massive changes or new feature overload.

Working continuously also means you can exert more control over the direction of your project by offering feedback as mentioned in the SCRUM framework to your development team to adapt the project to your ever-changing needs. 

Bringing on board an outsider to help with your expansion is always going to be a big deal, especially if you’re a startup or young business, but it doesn’t need to be a scary or alarming task. We empower our clients to take ownership of their project and its direction. As our guide shows, prepared with the right information, choosing a software house can be just the ticket towards your brand’s development!