April 06, 2015
Enola Labs

Enola Labs creates custom strategy and products for mobile and web.

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By: Kyle Cavazos

When a company outsources their app development team, it means that an assembly of members in different locations is completing the services they offer you. Most times, outsourcing an app will be more cost effective, but a scattered team can result in various problems that could diminish the quality of the desired product. Understanding all the pros and cons of your app development options is critical and having a firm grasp on whether or not outsourcing is right for you should be decided early in the process.

Problem 1: Technology differences

The technology and resources of an outsourcing company may not be in line with app developers in the United States, or they may simply lack access to the same means of creating apps. Current design trends are always updated and dominate app development styles. Outsourcing could put your development at risk for being behind the times.

Problem 2: Multiple developers

Your project may be put through an assembly of workers rather than a centralized and focused team devoted to your needs. Oftentimes, many of these developers are working on multiple assignments other than your own. This could jeopardize the direction of your app and put it on a path of something that you don’t want. The expertise of each individual contributor can range anywhere from beginner to a seasoned developer, but it’s hard to gauge without being able to meet the individual working directly on your product, rather than their domestic spokesperson - usually a project manager.

Problem 3: Communication issues

One of the biggest obstacles to outsourcing is being unable to physically see how much progress has been made. Sending updates requires relying on the word of a company and communication can be even more difficult if there is a time difference or language barrier. Even if you’re happy with the resulting app, you’ll miss out on developing a sense of personal trust with a company or workers that you can continuously return to for superior products.

Problem 4: Time Zone differences

Keep in mind that when outsourcing, the individuals working on your project are oftentimes located in areas outside your timezone. This becomes an issue when you need immediate feedback or updates that need to wait for the next work cycle to be completed. Working domestically or even with a local development shop helps you keep constant communication flowing and provides ease of access to your development team.

Problem 5: Design and testing issues

Its critically important that the individuals designing, developing and testing your app have deep knowledge of your product’s end user. Unfortunately when outsourcing to individuals outside your region, you tend to get functionality that mimics tastes of that region. Oftentimes these choices can have a disconnect to user expectations in your area.

If you’re considering following the path of outsourcing, be sure to spend time and research before committing to a specific company.