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6 Ways to make your software development cheaper

Have you ever wondered if the success stories of software development the Internet is full of are true? You might be racking your brains on how to find the middle ground and not to trade off quality over cost. Of course, you can follow some industry popular practices and hire affordable engineers from Southeast Asia e.g. India, Vietnam or Philippines.

If you choose this path, be aware of the fact that such software development might seem cheaper only at the start. Didn’t think so, but first off, in the longer run, you’ll discover that a bargain price per hour was so low, because often times the programmers do not have enough of domain knowledge to tackle arising challenges from the business standpoint.

Then, quite a typical scenario is that rarely they’d be too caring as you might expect from an overseas development company you contract. Finally, such a turnaround of things when you first get a lame copy of what you expected might be another round of collaboration where a client (read “you”) will have to pay for an upgrade of the app that would again cost you. But hey, you know that everything worth having doesn’t come easily or cheap for that matter.

Want to know more about how you can cut down on development costs and stay sane on the budget? In the next few paragraphs, we will cover some tricks of the trade that will help you spend wisely without compromising the quality of software development. Let’s get this show on the road.

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Pre-Development

Requirements gathering is not just some fancy step to take but the means to lay down the whole needs on paper. These are the pillars of the software development is going to be built upon. To top it off, a team for hire needs to understand the legal part of the equation especially if development is concerned several countries at once.

This very first step requires a lot of effort since there is a necessity to lay the foundation for the further software development and decide which platform to choose, for example. What’s more, an additional step is to weigh the whole bunch of features and select the core functionality as well as plan for extended good-to-haves to roll out later. Bear in mind, when your idea is almost all you have, you need to concentrate on the essentials of future development and do the market research thoroughly.

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Roadmap

Sequencing the tasks and setting the right accents is a must. There is a certain order when it comes to software development and you can take neither a shortcut nor U-turn but follow the roadmap. The latter is about strategic broad-range where you align the technology at hand with short- and long-term development objectives. This high-level planning tool is a product management document that includes all the features in backlog you are to sync with existing business goals.

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Scope

The Statement of Work is another name for a scope of all the talks to be executed during the software development. For starters, you need to take your time and create a logical and concise list of all the to be done’s in great details so that these “wants” can be translated to the technical “needs” that will be conveyed to the engineers.

And another thing to remember: the way you imagine your development is not the same developers see it, so this agreement on the work to be performed is an opportunity to get all the things clear and digestible by various categories of stakeholders.

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Wireframing

Wireframes in software development are also known as blueprints are the canvas of a future website or an app. Focusing on space allocation of specific objects, this technique is vital for screen design process and imagine everything at a structural level. Called UX backbone, wireframing can be made with the help of Paint, napkin, blackboard or using prototyping tools meant for this such as Axure or InVision, for instance. After all, with such a simple but detailed visual aid, you’ll be able to navigate through the development process with ease.

feedback

Feedback

Once you do the hand-over take-over passing the translation of the bold idea of yours to the development team, you need to keep an eye on further progress. After all, you will probably have your SPoC (single point of contact) e.g. project manager who is your helping hand in the field.

For a reason, you will have this middleman connecting you with the engineers who don’t like to express themselves much being busy programming. In other words, you will be able to control the progress making sure everything is on track and as per plan with the team grasping the essence of the tasks right.

What’s more, you can make it all formal and do the regular checks collecting feedback in accordance with the roadmap and scope of work defined earlier. In such a way, you’ll be able to foresee the challenges in software development e.g. in case someone lacks expertise or business domain knowledge to understand what needs to be done.

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Iterate fast or die fast

Don’t forget about the core features, must-have’s your product cannot do without. Leave the cherry on top for later stages of software development and now just bake and serve the cake, beta-testing your concept. Releasing this minimum viable product would allow you to understand what your target audience needs and their expectations beyond what you’re offering now. Once you know the extras, jump right in into the next iteration of development and add the cherry generating more revenues.
In any case, these are is just a few tips to guide you through the cost-reduction best practices in software development and help you sail through a complex process web.

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