Learn how to apply change management to agile software development. e.g. How to ensure appropriate stakeholders are available throughout the development cycle? How to manage organization’s internal personnel to get things done?
We work with clients that are actively looking to leverage the benefits of outsourcing, know the challenges that come along with outsourcing and are comfortable with the trade-offs associated with the same.
Sure, software product development is considered as a core competency of ISVs. However, with time and fierce global competition, product management, rather than product engineering, has proven to be the core differentiator.
It has already become a trend that is followed by many successful product companies. Take a look at most of the software product companies that are dominating the marketplace (e.g. ServiceNow, AppDynamics, Slack, Fab, Skype, Branchout, Basecamp, Splunk etc) – all of them have large engineering centers overseas (mainly India). However, all of them also have product management rooted primarily in North America.
While the decision to outsource sometimes comes down to an emotional decision to most technical leaders, the economics of the same cannot be refuted. How do you compete in a marketplace when your total costs of releasing a feature is 4x more than it would have been if it was outsourced? Your core product might be a SaaS application but you also need to develop the mobile and API ecosystem. Are you going to hire for that? We recommend a step by step approach to companies looking at leveraging the cost differential benefits of outsourcing product development. The various models of benefiting from outsourced product development are :
- Full fledged product development
- Co product development
- Modular product development
- Peripheral product development
We have helped ISVs “try us out” by outsourcing various activities of their software product lifecycle. The initial successes for these ISVs have been with product implementation, software testing, software product documentation. The core theme in these engagements have been to vet out the working relationship and quality of craftsmanship before outsourcing the core development activities themselves.
This approach has also helped us at NisosTech get educated on the very specific domain knowledge that’s required to work effectively for our customer.
Modular Outsourced Product Development
Typically, the next step of evolution in our relationship with an ISV is to start shouldering responsibilities of outsourced software development of non-core products. An example of such engagements is to develop the API ecosystem or integration solutions with products that are in the same competitive ecosystem as our customers. Yet another is to develop the mobile or web portal landscape for our customers when their core product is not web or mobile based. We have used our joint product integration skills to make these engagements a success.
We have also worked with customers’ teams where they want to shorten their product lifecycle by engaging in co-development activities with our teams. Here, typically, our customers consider us as an extended part of their own product development team and product development occurs “round the clock” in a “follow the sun” model thereby drastically shortening the product development lifecycle.
Full Fledged Outsourced Product Development
In this engagement model, we have handled 100% of the development and go to market responsibilities for our customer. Both our teams share the product roadmap and plan for product releases jointly. For more mature ISVs, this also translates to NisosTech handling one or more of our customers’ product lines.
Typically, for startups, this is the only way of entering a market. For more mature ISVs, this engagement model allows our customer to offload older, mature product lines while their development team continues innovating with the next generation products.
A nonprofit fundraising SaaS company wanted to ramp up their product development activities & go to market faster with their product lines. We worked together with their team to develop their entire product lines that included consumer facing web portals, backend platform and administrative portals, ecosystem APIs, custom content management systems, payment integration modules etc. Their development efforts were guided by the ISV’s tech leaders while their product life cycle was greatly reduced due to our ability to ramp up their OPD team on-demand. In this process, the product development / engineering costs were slashed by 75% thereby allowing the ISV to remain competitive in the market.
Email Marketing ISV
An email marketing ISV wanted to engage primarily in product management and marketing activities while offloading full product development initiatives to us. In this particular instance, we not only provided the OPD team for full life cycle product development but also provided CTO level engagement to our customer so they could concentrate completely on what they did best – product management and marketing.
Software Middleware ISV
A software middleware ISV wanted to compete in their ecosystem better by providing integration solutions with their competitors. This ISV’s product management team envisioned that it would allow them to compete against incumbents at their target customers better – and they were correct. We developed an integration solution for this ISV that allowed them to be able to sell to large enterprises without having to directly compete against Oracle, SQL Server, DB2.
Claims provider ISV
A claims provider wanted to shorten their product development lifecycle and also wanted to consolidate the various versions that their product lines/modules were running on. Over time, their product development team had chosen various technologies that were dependent on very specific versions of the underlying development stack. The ISV found it very expensive to maintain these various versions and wanted their engineers to concentrate on the next generation products. NisosTech helped the ISV’s product engineering team continue developing the next generation product line while we handled the various versions of the older product lines.