Here’s a scenario you can or might be facing – you hire an offshore team but don’t get the desired results. The remote developers are reluctant to share all their insights, and you face some delays during the development cycle.
So, is there a solution to such a challenge? Well, following the best practices for managing offshore resources can improve the output of your overseas IT team.
Managing offshore teams has become crucial as this industry has a projection of a 10.13% CAGR. So, the strategy to hire an offshore development team will rise in significance every year. The statistics imply that you need to leverage global talent by managing offshore teams effectively.
This blog can guide you in handling an offshore software development team and make it an integral asset for your organization.
Why You Need to Follow the Best Practices for Managing Offshore Resources?
As an overseas organization, hiring an offshore development team can be a logical decision.
You might be choosing such a strategy for the following advantages:
- Your organization receives access to a global talent pool
- The development service is cost effective
- You can fill existing talent gaps (if any)
- Experienced developers can work on your project for low costs
- You eliminate the requirement to hire full-time employees
- The offshore development team can cover a different time zone, thereby improving productivity
Now, to profit from all these advantages, you need a highly productive offshore software development team ready for transparent communication.
So, as a business, you should follow the best practices for managing offshore resources.
Ensure Your Offshore Development Ticks the Right Boxes
You can get the best output from any team if the professionals on board fulfill some basic prerequisites.
So, before implementing the best practices for managing offshore resources, you should check if your existing vendor ticks the right boxes:
- The offshore team is experienced
- Your offshoring partner has a strong portfolio
- The reviews for the vendor are mostly positive
- The team has certified and vetted professionals
- Your offshore development team provides constant feedback
If your offshore software development team offers all these aspects, then you are on the right track. As a client, you now need to play your part in offshore resource management.
Identify the Common Challenges Companies Face When They Hire an Offshore Development Team
Before venturing into understanding the onsite offshore communication best practices, it is vital to acquaint yourself with well-known challenges working with offshore team.
This section contains a table that lays down the common problems companies face when managing offshore teams.
Common Offshore Development Team Management Challenges
|Lack of Communication
|Proficiency in the English language and limitations in technology infrastructure can hamper the communication attribute
|Time zone Mismatch
|An offshore development team often works from continents like Asia or Eastern Europe. So, the differences in time zone can lead to inconvenience
|The adherence to deadlines, honest communication, and straightforward dialogue varies from culture to culture
|International organizations need to pay close attention towards aspects like IP protection, data safety, and privacy terms
|With several options available in the market, it is often difficult to choose the best offshore vendor. In such cases, you can end up selecting an inexperienced offshore development team, thereby affecting the quality of delivery.
Overall, the best practices for managing offshore resources put a high focus on reducing or eliminating the existing challenges.
Know the Practical and Best Practices for Managing Offshore Resources
In this section, you will find the top strategies for managing an offshore development team. Note that these practices are subjective and can vary from business to business. So, after understanding the true offshore team meaning, implement a specific one that suits your requirements and organizational structure.
1. Focus on Seamless Communication
“Effective teamwork begins and ends with communication.” – Mike Krzyzewski, Basketball Coach.
The above quote applies to all sectors across the globe. Working with offshore development teams can be challenging as they are mostly active online. So, for managing such offshore teams, you need to install all possible measures and elevate the quality of communication.
Refer to the following table to note some crucial pointers to establish fluency in communication with your offshore team.
How to Cover the Communication Aspect in Offshore Software Development?
|Gauge the level of English proficiency
|Use cloud services for data backup and collaboration
|Promote a communicative culture
|Set well-defined time slots for communication
|Keep a record of official emails
|Use project management tools
Proper scheduling and establishment of a communication framework are vital in managing offshore teams. Notably, all the team members should agree to this structure before initiating a project.
You should also foster a collaborative culture and ensure that the offshore developers communicate grievances without hesitation.
Here are some additional best practices for managing offshore resources:
- Communicate at least once at the beginning of the day
- Ensure your offshore team members have easy access to the project management tool
- Leverage technology and display profile statuses like ‘on leave,’ ‘away,’ ‘offline’
- Encourage a culture of knowledge-sharing and constructive feedback
Overall, following such small yet essential tips can help you manage offshore teams effectively.
2. Define Job Roles and Responsibilities Clearly
“When you accepted your job, you were not chosen solely to fill a position on the organization chart; you were chosen to fill a responsibility.” – David Cottrell, Business Author.
Your offshore software development team has several professional developers and technicians. However, to manage them profoundly, you need to convey their exact duties and responsibilities. This way, the professionals can give their best performance, thereby elevating the project’s quality.
A Project Manager needs to inform the offshore development team members about their daily roles and tasks.
So, some best practices for managing offshore resources include the following:
- Provide a task sheet to the offshore software development team
- Assign responsibilities with realistic deadlines to the professionals
- Use tools like online calendars to display the ongoing tasks of different team members
- Hold regular meetups to communicate the flow of interconnected activities
Moreover, keeping your offshore developers in the loop is key to improving the efficiency of the project cycle.
3. Supply Proper Equipment and Tools
“It is essential to have good tools, but it is also essential that the tools should be used in the right way.” – Wallace D. Wattles, Writer.
These days, collaborative technology has become crucial for successful offshore development. Notably, the collaboration software market enjoys a steady rise with annual revenue of USD 14.6 billion (projected).
In addition to providing collaborative tools, your major goal should be to supply the following technologies to your offshore development team:
- Fast internet connectivity (if required)
- Headsets or earphones
- Webcams or company laptops
- Video conferencing software
- Project management tools
- Communication software
For the sake of simplicity, you can divide the technology or equipment supply into two categories – hardware and software. Refer to the following generic table that can serve as a quick guide.
Generic List of Technologies to Bolster Your Offshore Software Development Team
|Trello or Asana
4. Do Not Micromanage Your Offshore Development Team
“It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” – Steve Jobs, Former Business Magnate.
One of the best practices for managing offshore resources is by avoiding micromanagement. When you hire an offshore development team, the vendor mostly connects you with skilled and vetted professionals. So, these team members understand the nuances of software development and can initiate the project professionally.
Keeping track of their tasks and questioning the work approach can send a negative message to the offshore software development team. You should be wary of evident micromanagement signs and avoid them for attaining a high level of efficiency.
The following table contains main pointers that can help identify micromanagement habits.
Signs of a Micromanager
|You demand daily update
|The mentorship activities are absent
|The satisfaction level is low
|Your project development is slow
|You want members to include you in every email
|There is no regard for employee autonomy tools
|The feedback provision is too frequent
|Your offshore team members request your approval for minute things
It is time to change your approach if you notice any of these signs. Provide more flexibility for your offshore development team. Furthermore, you should trust the remote members with various tasks of your ongoing project.
5. Foster a Friendly Work Culture
“The work environment is very important in determining how enjoyable work is. It is very important to work with smart guys who have a superior level of intellectual bandwidth and still have softer skills as well.” – Kumar Mangalam Birla, Industrialist.
Some best practices for managing offshore resources focus on cultivating long-term work habits. Building a friendly work culture is one such strategy.
Managing offshore teams India or any other location becomes easier if your in-house professionals and outsourcing members are in sync.
For this purpose, you can follow the below helpful tips:
- Encourage knowledge sharing
- Arrange informal monthly meetings
- Promote social interaction on a regular basis
- Keep an active chatroom for easy accessibility
- Organize fun meets on the communication platform
Overall, the offshore development team should feel as if it is a significant extension of your organization. So, attain a good balance between formal and informal communication. Don’t stay too serious all the time.
6. Conduct Training and Onboarding Sessions
“Nothing we do is more important than hiring and developing people. At the end of the day, you bet on people, not strategies.” – Lawrence Bossidy, Author and Businessman.
As the quote suggests, developing people is one of the best practices in the modern corporate sector. Professionals in your offshore development team will work more efficiently if they receive additional perks from your end.
Thus, your onboarding and knowledge transfer activities should help the overseas professionals to understand the following aspects:
- Company culture
- Mission and goal
- Technologies in use
- Workflow and process
- Best software development practices
A specialized Learning and Development (L&D) Executive can conduct such activities systematically.
7. Focus on Proper Documentation
“Communication and process documentation: those are the two major differentiators between successful and unsuccessful remote teams.” – Liam Martin, Co-founder (Time Doctor).
A well-established Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and up-to-date documentation can increase the efficiency of offshore software development. The in-house and overseas teams can access vital information if your documents are up-to-the-mark.
So, in addition to establishing clear communication, you should emphasize the creation of distinct and accessible documentation.
Choosing an offshore development team that is well-versed in creating such files can prove a wise decision. Also, you can discuss with such experienced vendors and create a transparent and easy-to-understand project roadmap.
Defining a well-laid non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is also critical to proper documentation. This way, your offshore software development team members become aware of their scope and limitations in using the organization’s data.
In a Nutshell
Your offshore software development team can become one of the best assets. To extract top-notch output from such a partner, you should follow the best practices for managing offshore resources.
First, it is vital to establish sound communication channels. Next, you should define clear job profiles and supply appropriate tools to the offshore development team. Avoiding micromanagement, cultivating a friendly work atmosphere, conducting knowledgeable training sessions, and maintaining proper documents are vital tips for managing offshore teams.
The success of your offshore software development depends on the correct implementation of these best practices. Also, your choice of an offshore vendor influences the end output drastically.
So, choose an authentic company and build your offshore software development team today. To reduce the hassle of research, you can contact eLuminous Technologies and connect with a strong employee base of skilled and vetted IT technicians.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How can I ensure the quality of my offshore development team?
You can set distinct KPIs for each member of the offshore team. Next, you should focus on establishing sound communication channels and conducting regular meetings to track the progress of each member. This way, it becomes possible to maintain high standards during project execution.
2. What are the main phases of offshore software development?
Project initialization, planning, execution, monitoring, controlling, and deployment are the main phases of offshore development. Managing offshore teams implies that you justify all these stages profoundly.
3. How can I address the cultural differences aspect in the best practices for managing offshore resources?
You should have a basic knowledge of work ethics to address cultural differences. Establish a friendly culture of diversity and inclusion. Encourage your offshore development team to share their thoughts and opinions without any hesitation.
4. What is offshore management?
Offshore management for businesses is like hiring a team in another country, usually for saving money and benefit from the currency differential. With this approach, companies can access a cost-effective global talent pool.
5. How do you get maximum productivity from an offshore team?
You can use video calls and project management tools to stay connected with your offshore software team for maximum productivity. In addition, you need to define clear goals, deadlines, and deliverables upfront. Finally, treat your offshore team like an extension of your own.
6. How to ensure a successful transition when setting up an offshore team?
To ensure a smooth transition with your new offshore team, providing detailed project documentation, training on tools and processes, and introducing team members is vital. Establish reliable communication channels, set regular meetings, and encourage open feedback. A good strategy is to invest in building cultural understanding and relationships.