Some words just have a bad reputation. Whenever you mention them to people they instantly pull a funny face. Offshoring is such a word. Probably because to some, it’s still linked to a time when it usually meant trouble in some shape or form (think unfinished projects, bad quality and culture clashes for example).
When done properly however, offshoring can bring tremendous benefits for your business. In fact, for a lot of fast growing small and medium sized companies, going offshore turns out to be a life saver at the moment. So it seems to me that it’s about time IT offshoring got rid of it’s bad rep. Here are 5 reasons why.
1. It Gives You Access to Experts
For someone not to know about the massive current demand for skilled (IT) developers, they’d almost have to be living under a rock. Many ambitious, small and medium sized enterprises that are going through a period of rapid growth, struggle to find high quality people that are affordable at the same time. Or to find any tech experts at all; the best ones are either taken or too expensive.
Fortunately – and regardless if we’re on opposite sides of the world – we’ve got the internet on one hand and heaps of new ways to communicate on the other. These two things combined shed a whole new light on ‘going offshore’, especially if you’re a small or medium sized company. Not only do you get access to a big pool of highly skilled – and educated – talent, now you’ve also got the technical means for hassle-free communication with them. On top of that, you can afford to pay them without breaking the bank.
2. You Get to Stay Lean
Offshoring gives you a lot of flexibility. This is particularly valuable when you’re scaling rapidly at the moment, but don’t know what things will be like two years down the line. Because ideally, you want to be prepared for the unexpected, yet remain as lean as possible.
Let’s say for example you’ve just landed a big new client and the project they want you to do is going to take at least a year, but probably more. They want you to start straight away – as most clients do – and you know you don’t have the manpower for it. Instead of going through a long and tedious recruitment process yourself – to try and find those rare, available tech experts – you could turn to a specialized IT offshoring partner. That way you get to stay flexible financially and legally, but you also get the extra resources you so desperately need.
3. You Get to Work with a Dedicated Team
Imagine this. You’re a fast growing SME and you’re in need for a bunch of tech super-heroes sooner rather than later. Chances are, the last thing your entrepreneurial spirit wants is to give away control over that part of your business. Offshoring, for example with Gapstars, gives you the opportunity to collaborate with a dedicated team that works exclusively on your project and for your company.
The big advantage of working with such a dedicated team is that its members truly become part of your company. As they are remote, this may require a little bit of extra attention in the beginning, but nothing too dramatic. We’ve written a post on how to work with remote teams before by the way (go here if you missed it).
4. Continuity & Risk Sharing
Running a business inevitably comes with certain (market) risks. And although you can’t avoid them completely, you can definitely make them more manageable. One of the ways to do so is by delegating certain parts of your business – and thus responsibility – to an offshoring company. Since they’ve got the expert industry knowledge, they know best how to mitigate your risks.
If you’re a born sales person for instance, you probably don’t know much about managing a software project. So while you may sell your company’s SaaS (Software as a Service) solution like no other, you’re not the right person to deal with the risks related to building software.
Offshoring also reduces the risk of a poorly operating business – due to high employee turnover or absence for example – and hence allows you to keep your company running.
5. It’s the Only Way to Survive
Okay, maybe not the only way. If you’re an Apple or an Amazon, you’ll probably know where to find those top quality tech people anyway and have the financial resources to afford them. But for the rest of us things are a little different, at least until we become worldwide giants ourselves. So in the meantime, we need to work with what we’ve got: a big pool of super talented people who happen to be in a different part of the world.
A Final Word
If you look for them, there are always going to be horror stories about anything, offshoring included. In the right hands tough, going offshore can be a very good thing for everyone involved. A dedicated offshore team becomes an intrinsic part of your company – and culture – and their skills complement those of your existing staff. You don’t have to completely break the bank to hire them either, which means you’ve still got some funds left. Funds you can use to expand your offerings and services. In other words: to grow your business. So really, when it comes to IT offshoring, it’s time to shake off that bad rep once and for all.