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    Dedicated software development team: How to hire the right one?

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    According to Forbes, there is a severe shortage of around 40 million skilled developers globally. And the number is likely to increase to 85.2 million by 2030, which can cost corporations worldwide $8.4 trillion lost in revenue. 

    Consequently, it’s getting harder and harder for you to put together a complete in-house development team. 

    Hiring a dedicated software development team is a great alternative to circumvent this issue. The idea is that you collaborate with a tech vendor to establish a digital team that works for you. Thus, avoiding the tiresome hiring process.

    This is how the procedure goes:

    1. Have a clear product vision in mind

    System Requirements (2)

    Business requirements portray the why of the project. What does your product want to accomplish, and why is it essential? This is where you connect the app’s objective to your company’s goals, like enhancing profit or boosting brand recognition.

    Following are the user requirements. This section addresses the who of the app - its end users. You’ll have to identify what issues the app is attempting to address and how users engage with it. 

    For a mobile banking app, for instance, the user requirement may be to enable people to transfer money easily anywhere at any time.

    The software requirements can be implied as the what of the app. This phase is where you list out the product’s specific features and functional needs. Another critical element is non-functional criteria that describe system functions, like expected performance and portability. For instance, the app’s load time should be less than 3 seconds.

    Once the project’s requirements are defined, the next step is determining its scope. In this stage, you will establish the goals, activities, timelines, resources, and deliverables for your team to work toward. Doing so can help you perceive what roles you need for your development team and the jobs you plan to assign them. This makes the following stage - market research - a lot easier.

    Set your budget and deadlines

    Having a clear vision for your product can also help you have a more precise calculation of the total costs. By laying the expenses out ahead of time, you can determine a preliminary budget and choose the team that best suits it. 


    2. Market research vendors


    This phase entails browsing the vendor market and seeking a potential fit. Here are a few ways you can look for remote development team:

    • Your network: referrals are a great way to find tech talent. It can be worthwhile to reach out to someone you know who has experience in hiring outsourced software development vendors. This is particularly beneficial when their company is in the same industry as yours. 

    • Google Search: Paid and organic results can both be useful. Try to enter a few terms or keywords pertinent to your software development needs and look for businesses that offer software development services. Doing so allows you to discover their offerings and determine whether their portfolio of finished projects matches your project idea.

    • IT companies & software listings: there are many reliable platforms to employ when you seek a committed dedicated team of software developers. Some popular company directories are Clutch, GoodFirms, and Design Rush. Your search can be made easier with any of these listed tools using their easy-to-use filters which permit you to sort enterprises by country, hourly rates, industry, etc.

    Read more: 15+ Best Practices for Hiring and Managing a Software Development Team

    3. Vendors evaluation 

    vendor evaluation

    After using these approaches to study the market, you can make a list of five to ten corporations that merit further consideration. It’s highly recommended to create a checklist in which you can jot down important vendor evaluation and scoring points. Some criteria you should look out for when shortlisting prospective partners are: 

    • Established security protocol

    Cybersecurity threats continue to rise in recent years, from infrastructure vulnerabilities, phishing attacks to data breaches and malware. To avoid such risks, a provider with established security policy is worth considering. Your vendor should conform with international security standards like ISO, PCI, and HIPAA to ensure the safety and security of your confidential data.


    • Streamlined Agile procedures

    Agile methodology is arguably the most popular and effective approach for most software projects. Agile practices, like sprint planning, daily stand-up, retrospective, and product backlog, make it easier and effective to manage your outsourced developers. Hence, selecting a vendor with optimized Agile processes ensures improved productivity and flexibility while decreasing costs and time-to-market. Using this methodology, KMS Solutions has managed to help Asia Commercial Bank (ACB) launch its business banking mobile app in just 4 months.


    • Solid communication and project management skills 

    The process of developing software is intricate, and communication issues will make it more challenging at every stage. Your selected technology partner should be able to provide a proper communication process and make an effort to keep you informed about the project’s progress and updates. These details imply that the provider is keen to discuss all the specifics and nuances with you to avoid misunderstandings. This capability is essential in a time of remote. 

    Furthermore, your communication tools should be able to cover these key areas: communication, issue tracking, and version control. Examples involve Slack, Trello, Jira, and G Suite. Some platforms, like Jira, have a learning curve for engineers who are new to the tool. Hence, it’s advised that everyone agrees on which tools to utilize. 

    Besides communication tools, your dedicated software development team can adopt project management templates to create an action plan, predict the project’s duration, and measure workload capacity.


    • Project history & portfolio

    Most providers with sufficient experience typically have a solid portfolio that features in-depth case studies on the project that have successfully delivered or are in progress. Such examples  offer insights into the vendor’s methodologies and tech stack that were deployed to accomplish clients’ requirements and objectives. Browsing through a few of them can give you an overview of the procedures and determine whether the vendor will mesh well with your team. 

    Pay close attention to projects similar to yours. If the vendor has already worked on something similar, it strongly indicates that they have the experience and skills you require. By examining the outcome, you can draw conclusions about what you’d like to execute differently. Partnering with an experienced team can also help you benefit from time and money savings (as opposed to if you teamed up with novices in your industry).


    • Testimonials 

    It’s a good idea to explore the viewpoint of other client corporations like yourself before recruiting a dedicated software development team. Besides testimonials that are displayed on the provider’s website, you can check reviews on the above-mentioned IT software listings to evaluate their professionalism and workplace culture.

    Investigate as much feedback as you can and take note of the strengths and weaknesses that people brought up. This will give you a better sense of the business and how your potential partnership might progress. If the IT provider is receiving numerous rave reviews from satisfied customers, there is likely that your experience with them will also be positive.


    • Budget

    The two most common pricing models are the fixed-price and the time & material model.

    Fixed-price Time & Material
    • A model that guarantees a fixed budget at the beginning of the project, based on predetermined requirements, deadlines, and costs. 
    • Suitable for companies with 
      - Well-defined requirements that are unlikely to change
      - Small or medium-sized project
      - Fixed budgets
    • A model in which customers only pay for the time (hourly rate of developers) and resources spent on the project
    • Perfect for projects:
      - Requires flexibility
      - Complicated or long-term projects with changing scopes

    4. Interview prospective vendors 

    interview vendors

    The next phase is interviewing the candidates. Face-to-face meetings or online video calls can be arranged to discuss the project, get to know the vendor, and perhaps even the project manager or the entire development team. 

    Prepare a set of questions and specify the deliverables. You might enquire about the organization’s previous experience with similar projects and how they plan to tackle yours. Raise questions like team size, data privacy, tech stack, preferred communication tools and which solutions they propose. 


    5. Assemble your team

    team assemble

    After selecting a suitable vendor and signing a contract, you can start creating your own dedicated team using their internal talent pool. Some of the essential roles in a digital team are:

    • Project manager: monitors the entire project processes from task distribution, delivery, team communication to performance report. 
    • UX/UI designer: generates wireframes and the overall aesthetic of the product
    • Software developer: turns the design into a functioning and usable solution
    • QA/QC specialist: handles code testing and detect bugs

    Bear in mind that the composition of a digital team can differ from project to project. Some projects may require additional roles, like business analyst, solution architect or cybersecurity specialist. Furthermore, certain niches, such as financial institutions, would need subject matter experts to aid in compliance. 


    6. Onboarding and knowledge transfer

    team onboarding

    During this phase, the dedicated software development team fully grasp the product idea and plan resources accordingly. Here is how the product knowledge transition operates:

    • Product exploration (2 - 4 weeks): In this stage, the team is expected to familiarize themselves with the product overview, goals, and roadmap. Regarding the technical aspects, they also acquire the product architecture overview, the deployment topology as well as the infrastructure. 

    • Product in-depth (2-4 weeks): Once the digital team have a basic understanding of the product concept, they will go into further details of the product functionalities with the product’s feature mind-map, flow diagram, themes, epics, and user-story mapping 

    • Hands-on (4 weeks): With all the necessary information at hand, the team can now start creating product features and fixing bugs complying with the agreed development methodology (such as Agile/Scrum) 

    Ready to kickstart your dedicated development team? 

    Although the hiring dedicated development team process is relatively straightforward, it is not simple and risk-free. In fact, it is challenging to put up an adaptable, qualified, and skillful team. Thus, the best approach is to partner with a technology vendor like KMS Solutions, with a wealth of experience and expertise in forming high-performing teams. 

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