Navigating through the software development industry can be difficult. When taking on a development project, choosing a provider can take longer than the actual project if you have no idea where to begin!
Let’s lay out your options:
- Forget development, continue business as usual or select an off-the-shelf package
(Here are 3 ways forward thinking companies use custom software to grow business.)
- Hire a developer or contractor
(Curious about hiring a developer? Here are 4 factors you should consider.)
- Hire a development firm
If you’re at the point in your decision where you are evaluating partners, here are five reasons to build a relationship with a local software development company over a tech giant.
- Work with a team of passionate innovators
Tech giants hire to fill workload needs. What does this mean for you? Projects are piled up on employee desks; and the team can rest easy knowing that they have a stable paycheck and a steady workload.
Local companies have a much greater need to find talented people that take pride in making a difference and developing an amazing product. People who gravitate towards smaller companies have more opportunities to create and innovate, and their projects become works of passion.
- Get your innovation to the market quicker
Big companies have organizational hierarches and processes that tend to create gates for your team. These roadblocks slow decisions down, and you may be faced playing the waiting game for “your turn.”
Smaller companies know how critical a product’s launch timing is. Local companies like alligatortek can make quick decisions over a simple conversation or lunch. Removing the hierarchical checks can keep your project moving at a quicker timeline.
- Tap into the expertise of other team members
Bigger companies tend to work in siloes and have gates between departments. It is easy to tack on internal fees to open these doors in the form of meetings and approvals. Smaller companies have more open lines of communication, and team members can get input from others without having to open as many gates.
- Keep your costs down
Internal meetings and time billed to get feedback and approvals can add up. Removing the hierarchical processes of larger companies can reduce your costs and keep your timelines short.
- Build relationships with your points of escalation
If you’ve worked with big businesses, you may have been directed to a “support line” when you run into challenges. No name, just a phone number, and some frustratingly cheery elevator music. You may even have been patched over to a supervisor on duty, where you explained your position over again.
Small businesses like alligatortek know how important customer service is to their clients. At each of our partnership’s kickoff meeting, our clients are personally introduced to their points of escalation (with names, direct emails, and direct phone numbers), and given clear examples of when to involve them. Try getting a hold of the CEO of SalesForce.com when you have issues implementing your product with your customized workflows.
Photo courtesy of Daniel White, @dwhitephoto1, Daily Herald Business Ledger
Consider these points as you decide between a local software development partner or a large technology provider. Your company will have its own opinion on how important these 5 factors are to your partnership. As you engage in conversations with potential solution providers, here are some questions you can ask to help you make a decision.