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10 questions you should ask before hiring a dedicated engineering team

Questions you should ask before hiring a dedicated engineering team

You are on the verge of building out a disruptive product or a solution to the global market. You have done the due diligence for product delivery. You believe that having a dedicated delivery team is the best way to go. The expected benefits include the following:

  • Acquiring hard skills that your team does not have
  • Onboarding additional people with flexible skillsets on the team
  • Gaining cost savings
  • Shorter cycles to begin the project
  • Flexibility to focus on your core business and skills
  • Quick disengagement with the team.

We have put together a set of 10 questions that you should ask yourself before hiring a dedicated team for your organization.

1. Will there be a fitment between my project goals and the vendor organization?

Dedicated Engineering Team - Project Goals

You will have to figure out what you would like to accomplish out of this outsourced engagement. You will have to understand which portion of the goal this vendor organization will be able to do

2. Do they understand my business?

You will have to focus on the understanding of the business. You can hire the teams quite fast and can get them on the job in a short time. However, projects fail if the teams do not understand your business. The project will not be 100% successful if the partner does not understand your business.

3. What are the Portfolio, References, and Client testimonials of the vendor organization?

Dedicated Engineering Team - Customer Reference

You will then have to find out whether the vendor organization has worked with companies in similar business as yours. You will have to look at the projects they have worked on, the business challenges they have been able to solve, what technologies they have expertise in, and finally, what sort of business benefits they have been able to give to their customers. It is always good to talk to a couple of their customers to find out whether this organization is as good as they claim to be.

4. Who will be the key people in the organization/project?

After evaluating the organization, you will now have to look at the people they will deploy. It is always good to get some people with some experience in solving something similar to what you would like to solve. These people will be able to understand the challenges practically and will be able to help you achieve your business goals faster. You will be able to save your time in explaining the business and the business goals.

5. What will be the composition of the vendors team?

Dedicated Engineering Team- Team Composition

A dedicated software development team needs to combine Developers, Quality Assurers, Business Analysts, DevOps, UI/UX designers, and Project Managers. You will need to evaluate the company on the kind of people they have to know how this organization can provide you completeness in terms of a team. You will find it challenging to manage if the dedicated teams are from multiple vendor organizations.

6. What will be the timelines towards completion?

Dedicated Engineering Team - Timeline and Reporting

You will have to find out the timelines the dedicated team will take to complete the scope of the work you will have in mind., This can be tentative, but there needs to be a realistic sense about the timelines for completing the projects. This commit on the timelines will help you plan your deliverables and help you be in line with your product roadmap.

7. Will the right resources be available?

One of the critical evaluation parameters is to find out whether the team you want is available right away. The vendor organization will come in handy when they can begin the work right away. The situation will be a bit hazy if the vendor organization has to hire these resources first. The haziness is because it will take a lot of time to build a team for you.

8. What will be the Reporting mechanisms?

Keep your reporting as frequent as possible. The reporting will help you to avoid last-minute surprises. You can have a combination of daily/weekly team reports and monthly one-on-one updates. The team's meeting is to schedule demos/walkthroughs, discuss work completed and plans. The one-on-one sessions will help get to know the team members better, find out their areas of interest and build a team that works motivated for you.

9. What are my budgets and how much will I be spending?

One of the critical parameters to evaluating a dedicated team will be on the cost. The team that has worked on similar projects in the past and understands your business will help cut short the spend. The experienced team will also ensure that they would avoid mistakes. The team will help you in saving on time as well. You will have to have a budget in hand clearly and also understand what the spend it. Understanding the spending will help you in having a safe buffer so that you can turn things around if things will go awry.

10. What will be the Transparency and Documentation during the engagement?

There is always an element of uncertainty on what is happening daily. The tension is because the outsourced team could be based in an offshore location. Hence the emphasis on transparency on the work done daily is a must. This transparency has to be supported by the proper documentation that will help you establish standards. You will then be able to take over the coding once the engagement with the vendor concludes.

Conclusion

I hope you have understood how to evaluate a dedicated team. It would be best if you now made a checklist of parameters of evaluation. The checklist will have the scope, the budget, and the parameters you would like to evaluate the vendor organization. You can utilize multiple ways to shortlist the vendor organizations and can use the checklist to evaluate various vendors thus shortlist the good ones. You can then do the final sets of conversations with the shortlisted organizations and select the right dedicated teams.

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