While the software development field is still surging in the USA, domestic markets have been largely tapped. Projections that the industry is facing a 25% outlook in job growth (through 2031) come with promises of six-figure salaries from big tech software development companies. They also promise low, stable unemployment rates. This leaves most software development companies with a smaller pool of domestic talent to choose from. But these professionals are not exactly eager for temporary employment.

Fortunately, the technically innovative nature of this field has simultaneously broadened the market beyond one’s own digital borders. The internet has created greater economic opportunities, even (or especially) in countries already dominating in their field. Nowhere is that more true than in the software development field.

We’ll discuss the most effective ways to identify software development companies specializing in untapped, flexible development talent to ensure faster development times, easier collaboration, and far lower project failure rates. The foundation of all of this is utilizing nearshore software development. The following five hacks will aim your outsourcing efforts to the best possible effect.

Hack #1: Exclude More Countries Than You Include

While the beauty of flexible staffing for software development companies is that you open up the whole world to your recruitment efforts, that doesn’t mean you have to. In fact, you shouldn’t for all but the most one-and-done services that require little communication.

Programming and development are both innately communicative. It’s called a coding language for good reason. Even when you’re certain the offshore employee has the abilities you’re looking for in the same coding language as your project, there are always nuances to how your in-house team applies that coding language.

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For example, some coders default to hashmaps at every opportunity. But if your project depends on linked lists, you’d need to confer with staff to ensure everything gets coded synergistically. Overall, the software development company’s senior software engineer must be capable of quickly clarifying when a specific method of using a given language is required or risk having billable work submitted that doesn’t fit your in-house team’s core efforts.

It’s a fantasy to think you can dole out tasks, summon the components together, and then assemble them into a finished product with minimal discussion. Efficient communication is key in project development. But that’s largely impossible when the culture and time divide is too wide.

How to Find the Right Fit

This goes beyond just ensuring prospects speak and code in the same language as you. It requires an overall alignment between your in-house and outsourced teams. Start by making a pool of the nations that yours has a strong cultural overlap with. Keep the following considerations in mind:

  • Rate of ESL (and the average age of acquisition)
  • Technology adoption rates
  • Time zones
  • Cultural similarities
  • Commonalities between education and training systems

Narrowing down your prospects in these ways may even reveal outside talent who are more capable than in your domestic market — especially as the likes of Google and Microsoft snatch up the highest-quality candidates at home. Strategic offshoring is a way of leveling the playing field for smaller software development companies, which now are able to acquire offshore talent as quickly and easily as their major competitors.

Hack #2: Hire for Project Completion

When outside staff is involved from start to finish, they are much more committed to its success. They have repeat business in mind, and their contributions will be more obvious to the project manager. If you have confident outsourced talent, they won’t shy away from this. Instead, they will be eager to prove their abilities.

The alternative is telling add-on staff up front that they could be turned loose next week or even tomorrow. Then, they won’t put their best work forward because they are working more to fill the time than to ensure they are seen as valuable assets. Programming and development have a way of revealing who is and isn’t pulling their weight, but only given a sufficient amount of time.

Of course, this isn’t always possible. You don’t want to lose sight of the need to maintain flexibility for your in-house team’s benefit. While the longest-term project goals may prevent keeping outsourced staff on for the duration, software development companies are often surprised when they see how much more bang for their buck they can get.

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The Cost-Benefit Analysis

Compared to the payroll savings achieved on bonuses, incentive packages, and excessive salaries, you can usually afford to keep competent nearshore staff onboard based on the most effective duration of time rather than purely based on short-term costs. Short-term costs are important — but not at the expense of quality. Maximizing development cycle speeds while improving product quality can rightly influence your hiring judgment more than cost-cutting.

If you can get a higher quality of work by spending a little more to maintain the same staff throughout the duration of a project, you’ll likely save more than you would on multiple rounds of hiring. Doing the latter increases onboarding costs. It also signals to unvetted hired help that their contributions are not likely to be fully scrutinized until after they’ve left.

These principles go beyond outsourcing. Even local developers thinking of changing jobs are usually doing so in the interest of higher pay and benefits more than any other consideration. But with outsourcing, expect better performance from dedicated teams. They will become highly familiar with your operations and eager to please from the outset.

Hack #3: Ingrain Quality Controls From the Beginning

In-house employees discussing QA with software development companies

In keeping with the above, emphasizing quality over quantity (or at least making them coequal) is critical to minimize the number of updates, release patches, and bug fixes you’ll need to handle. The best way to accomplish this is to weave your quality controls into the development process early. Most organizations can accomplish this better with nearsourcing than outsourcing.

Unless you are under an extremely tight deadline for a beta launch or something similar, save time in the long run by spreading out quality control efforts. It lets the team know that their work will be more effective, and collaboration time is much better spent when quality control is central to the discussion.

This is especially important with far offshore help, when quality control issues rise significantly. Take some time before selecting a new software development company. Clarify standards and rules meant to filter out sub-par material before you start. Otherwise, you risk time lost trying to work around glitches that could have been avoided with clearer instructions and smoother collaboration in the first place.

The key to all of this is real-time communication. Often enough, the only “procedure” needed to maintain quality standards is ensuring new team members consistently receive timely responses to their questions. This is only possible if your outsourced help is nearshore, not offshore, as the former ensures a consistent flow for all team members. You’re all in sync, and your rapport is natural.

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Hack #4: Use Countries With Accessible Legal Systems

While rare, software development companies must consider issues of compliance before they even potentially occur. Suppose your offshore staff is in a country where it’s difficult or impossible for foreigners (i.e., you) to leverage their legal system and enforce confidentiality agreements, for example. In that case, you essentially have no confidentiality agreement.

Even more importantly, one’s intellectual property rights only exist as a condition of a contract. So, ensure you have the standing to enforce one in the first place.

Software development companies can also minimize legal issues by relying on a professional company that specializes in securing nearshore staff in particular countries. They will have screened applicants beforehand, and they can do so easily and thoroughly. This is only possible when you leverage a hiring resource already knowledgeable of that country’s legal system.

Hack #5: Outsource the Outsourcing

Following through on all the above requires a fair amount of research. Chances are, if you’re looking into nearshoring, you’re already considering your time and financial resources with greater discernment. Unless you have a wealth of first-hand knowledge in the nation(s) you’re considering, a significant loss of time spent researching these matters is necessary to refine the quality of your pool of candidates by yourself.

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Just as neighboring and friendly nations host highly capable developers, some specialists facilitate these collaborations on behalf of the hiring software development company. For a small fraction of the payroll costs saved on nearshoring, you can hire out your hiring process to those with regional expertise. Since you’re likely looking for faster development cycles, securing faster hiring first and foremost is an extremely wise investment.

If you manage it yourself, hiring costs in foreign lands can add up. They include:

  • Demographics research
  • Marketing efforts
  • Lengthy screening processes
  • Legal difficulties
  • Possible travel expenses

These are time-draining tasks you may not have the resources to perform quickly, skillfully, or at all.

Software development companies can accomplish the previous four hacks can with a trusted and experienced nearshoring partner. The more you work with them, the faster your hiring process becomes.

Most importantly, you’ll be getting the exact skills you want right when you need them.

Nearshoring: The Ultimate DevOps Hack

Startup using nearshore software development companies

Even for the most crucial parts of the development cycle, American software development companies increasingly rely on nearshoring. This type of outsourcing involves working with a development firm located in or working with a nearby country, most commonly in Latin America, which has accumulated incredible untapped development talent.

For development, in-house employees and contractors usually need to collaborate much more than in the typical long-distance offshoring arrangement, when they face wide separation by time zones. This complicates communication, especially when the project depends on real-time discussions. Nearshoring keeps your outsourced staff on the same page as your in-house team, making everyone happier and more effective.

Development Talent Within Reach

Hiring an army of full-time employees, or even a small specialty team, is often an advantage only major multinational corporations can enjoy. Also, even if the cost wasn’t a major concern, what if full-time development needs were just not there for your company throughout the year? Most developers in the USA are not looking for temporary work, except for freelancers who can usually charge a premium.

Nearshoring is a way of obtaining the same level of workmanship typically only achieved from a full-time employee but on an as-needed basis. You can stay project-oriented, not team management-oriented. Payroll costs won’t continually accumulate after the specific bounds of a project have been exceeded. Having quality development work performed in proportion to your needs is possible when you freely open your hiring practices up.

This means both opening up your talent scouting practices and staffing durations. Because the software development field in the USA is extremely competitive, you’ve likely already experienced the pressure to offer bigger incentives than your company can afford in order to attract an increasingly opportunistic domestic labor base. Doing so is almost totally off the table for startups. Startups conversely need dedicated help more at the beginning, when payroll resources are usually low and investors are more skeptical.

Supplementing Your In-House Team

There are clear limits to how much even the tightest-knit team of specialists can accomplish on their own, creating a gap between labor needs and availability. But that gap only exists within the boundaries of one’s economic borders. Telecommuting has reduced those boundaries. Now, SMBs and startups are just as capable of securing non-domestic talent. The most reliable way of doing so is partnering with a nearshoring firm that specializes in sourcing temporary development talent from culturally aligned nations.

Many believe the globalized economy is veritably shrinking. But nearshoring creates new frontiers in the free trade of specialized labor. Nearshoring makes it possible to do this at the scale of individual employees. This benefits people and their families over blue chip companies. Like most things in business technology, the tools and strategies previously only available to massive companies have become more affordable and decentralized.

Working in Parallel

The general workforce now has fewer barriers than ever to the free exchange of talent. That goes for most of the world. With a dedicated firm already sourcing talent in neighboring and culturally aligned countries, your company can maintain greater long-term staff flexibility. The benefits of nearshoring with the right software development companies are extremely broad and include the following:

  • Greater cost savings
  • Accelerated development cycles
  • Nearshore staff who learned English in their youth
  • Staff who share the same time zone(s) as your in-house team
  • Similar training and development skills
  • A larger pool of talent to choose from
  • Faster product times to market

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Based out of Dallas, Texas, ParallelStaff represents outstanding Latin American development talent with at least five years of IT experience in three or more technologies relevant to particular development needs. This untapped development talent lives in areas within the same five time zones of America. We can assemble supplemental help between five and ten days of a request.

Our development teams have a 90% acceptance rate from our onshore clients, far exceeding that of typical offshore arrangements. We also hire development engineers with valid passports and tourist visas. This allows software development companies to host nearshore talent at their place of business.

If you have any questions, contact us. When you’re ready to begin nearshoring, schedule a time to meet with us and tell us about your exact development needs. Our mission is to ensure your company remains as competitive as possible beyond the limitations of your location.

Mike Hernandez