When starting a business that requires an app or website, it’s smart to invest in hiring a custom software development company that can bring your software design vision to reality.
However, we don’t always have the financial means to assign huge budgets to software product development. For those times when your business software is in big need of intervention, but your budget doesn’t reflect it, we have the perfect solution.
Let’s take a look at 4 ways to reduce expenses, without the quality suffering!
1. Make A Detailed Plan
When you begin your software engineering project, know your key objectives, set a budget, and most importantly, stay flexible.
The plan is perfect in your head, but if you haven’t already, the first step towards progress is to outline in writing what your new software should accomplish from user perspectives. For example: Who are your users? What are their steps to a successful primary flow using your software? How detailed do the initial key features need to be – simple login or facial recognition? Open up a Google Doc and don’t worry about being perfect.
Creating an initial roadmap will help you work through software expectations and be best prepared to talk to a design and development team to discuss efforts and craft a timeline.
This plan will change during the initial build. Expect it. Throughout the build, new business logic, surprise ideas, technical limitations or a myriad of other reasons will come up. You can swap effort with another lower priority feature or functionality, extend your timeline (and likely cost), or put it on the list for the next phase. You should always feel you have options, even if they create tough decisions.
While planning your project, keep the project’s long-term goals in mind. If you want your software to grow and adjust to different ecosystems, your software design should be planned in such a manner that future requirements can be easily accommodated.
2. Share Your Plan
Leaning in on the famous saying, “get out of the building” and talk to people.
If any part of your roadmap is unclear, talk to potential users and get their feedback. Try to talk to strangers to avoid friends being nice in their feedback. Figure out the particularities of your target audience and what would make their experience with your product the best it can be!
Using paper prototypes (simple drawings on paper) you can receive reactions that may lead to helpful early stage adjustments. However you choose to validate your roadmap, doing so is critical to navigating a tight budget.
If you’re concerned about confidentiality, then convey the high level objectives and limit feedback to a particular aspect of your plans. People love giving opinions and ultimately, they are unlikely to have your domain expertise, drive, and progress to try to build your idea after a simple feedback conversation.
After a while you’ll find that the feedback fits into a pattern you’ve acknowledged, or it’s not relevant. And remember, don’t confuse feedback with your vision. Intuition comes from original ideas that may go against the grain, just be prepared for how you’re solving the problem. Ford seemed crazy for building a machine when everyone was arguing for faster horses.
3. Build One Slice at a Time
Be prepared to build a narrow horizontal slice. An initial product launch should be able to be accomplished within 60-90 days. If it’s planned to take longer, then it’s likely being overbuilt. That’s bad. Get your software into user hands ASAP to learn from their feedback and have a budget to address their requests as well as building roadmap features.
The use of MVP (minimum viable product) has become overused, but it does still have its place. Think of your first official launch as a resume. Build it just enough to capture interest and get the next step. In the case of a resume, it’s an interview request. For your product, it may be creating an account, a paid subscription, using certain features, or a number of activities.
With your roadmap setting up the key activities for user objectives, the initial groundwork for your software can be laid. Good software development is all about layering. If a feature is not as robust or not included in the initial release, it doesn’t mean it will never be there, it’s just being prioritized against more critical work. Be prepared to make hard decisions with sequencing work.
View your initial launch as slices of the bigger picture. How would you turn a herb garden into a farm? Not all at once.
4. Outsource To An Offshore Custom Software Development Company
When it comes to lowering software product development expenses, outsourcing is one of the best ways to do just that. The good news is, there are plenty of incredible dev shops to choose from, and their geographical location is no longer an obstacle, no matter your location.
By partnering with an offshore custom software development company, you can have access to a broad set of resources that can be immediately available and save budget on costs committing to in-house hiring
For a quality project that stays on track, a minimum product team includes full-time developers that could be a mix of front end and back end with a mix of web, mobile, and DevOps skills.
Be cautious of anyone who says they can do it all. Many can dabble across disciplines, but it’s like someone remodeling your house and claiming they can expertly handle your plumbing, electrical, tile, and cabinetry by themselves. You’ll also need access to a designer and someone who will be available 20+ hrs a week to manage the project team and details.
Directly hiring these positions is a long term commitment that comes with extra costs. If you already have some of these skills on your team, use outsourcing for short-term augmentation to spin up/down as you launch or drive product initiatives.
When you go for offshore software development in places like India, you can see significant savings beyond money. Outsourcing offshore can deliver you a well-rounded team that sticks to your timeline with a 40% decrease in software engineering costs.
Find out more about what going offshore with your business software development means in terms of benefits by checking out some more articles from Idyllic’s blog!
So, What Next?
There are many ways in which you can reduce costs of your business software in order to stick to a tighter budget without compromising the quality of your software design.
You can plan and schedule, working smart to keep everything in check. However, perhaps by far the smartest move in terms of budget-friendly solutions is opting for offshore software development to extend your financial runway.
Instead of stressing with expenses that you can’t confidently afford for in-house teams, you can find an amazing custom software development company with incredible experience and lower costs; offshore software development can be your best friend!
You guessed it, that stunning software engineering company we had in mind is none other than Idyllic! With their incredibly talented team and impressive portfolio, it’s only natural to entrust them with your business software!