Choosing IT Outsourcing Company: 9 Factors to Consider
Several decades ago, the main driving force behind IT outsourcing was cost reduction. But today’s highly competitive business environment faces new challenges dramatically raising the bar of expectations for outsourcing services.
Now, it is not enough to bring cost efficiency, streamlined operations and performance excellence. Businesses look for a strategic partner with the relevant expertise to complement their strengths and shore up their weaknesses. A strong partnership is vitally important to achieving success, but the positive results, possible with outsourcing, become unreachable if companies fail to find the right outsourcing provider.
Choosing an IT outsourcing firm is a challenging task especially with such an abundance of choice. But considering the following factors can help you make the right decision.
Quality of Outsourcing Services
The quality of outsourcing services is defined by the provider’s ability to help your business succeed. Therefore, analyze its talent pool and skill potential using certifications, CVs, and personal interviews with candidates. Also, consider the availability of labour supply on the local market that could respond to your growing business needs. It is way easier to perform at high levels with a powerful talent pool and an advanced skill set.
Summary: Make sure that you get high quality of IT services possible at a reasonable price.
Outsourcing Costs and Price Model Transparency
The global supply of outsourcing services has dramatically increased, shifting costs down. Thus, facing the realistic probability to get lost in a vast variety of providers and prices, it is important to search the market in advance so that you could outline the best offers. Afterwards, ensure that service quality, price model transparency and price itself are well-balanced.
Summary: Price should not be low or high. It should be justified and clear.
Another milestone for outsourcing success is choosing an advantageous location. This strategic task requires accurate research and planning. It involves finding a lucrative point on the map with untapped market potential, with cultural proximity, with convenient airline connections and even more.
Summary: Find an advantageous location.
Everyone knows that “cultural fit” lies at the heart of outsourcing and can become a key reason for your success or failure. However, many managers admit that cultural difference brings both difficulties and substantial benefits, such as fresh out-of-the-box ideas/approaches. Thus, you need to take a holistic view and access the cultural differences as early as possible. This will give you a chance to harness their potential and mitigate the risks of a culture clash in the future.
Summary: Find out whether values of the outsourcing supplier fit your own culture.
Customers’ Reviews and Feedback
To get a complete picture of the outsourcing vendor, ask for feedback or reviews from the customers the company has worked with. Be confident that you invest in the best possible business partner that has delivered proven IT services to others.
Summary: Check customers’ reviews and feedback revealing true relations.
Now, there’s an entirely new way to evaluate IT outsourcing services. On the surface, there should always be a good balance between quality and price that ensures affordable yet qualitative services. But underneath, you should discover the readiness of the outsourcing provider to work closely with you on your strategic business goals; it is a whole new indispensable dimension to outsourcing – a partnership dimension.
Summary: Define the ability and readiness of the outsourcing provider to contribute to your success.
Technology and Infrastructure
Just to keep pace with the rapidly evolving digital world, you should ensure that your outsourcing partner uses cutting-edge technology and sufficient infrastructure to handle the project. An on-site visit will help you investigate whether equipment and facilities respond to your requirements and expectations. Moreover, the personal visit allows you to meet the team and better understand the company culture, values, and processes.
Summary: Analyze the provider’s facilities and equipment.
Underestimated but the extremely important asset is management maturity. People who lead teams in the IT outsourcing company should have an extensive technology background and vast managerial experience that help to build a smooth long-term collaboration. Seasoned leaders always know how to address the outsourcing challenges.
Summary: Get acquainted with the management team.
Effective and clear communication provides a strong backbone for successful work coordination. Thus, it is essential to pay enough attention to communication processes and channels. Also, do not forget to evaluate language skills of the remote employees to prevent participation barriers later.
Summary: Evaluate language skills and communication processes.
The approach to evaluating the above-mentioned key factors varies depending on the needs and specifications of your business/project. But considering these factors, you will get a good understanding of whether an IT outsourcing company fits your business.