Software development is far from cheap, mostly because it is unique and tailored to the needs of the business. Unlike other services, software development is rarely something you can do yourself, so it can be hard to know how to cut back on costs.
Here, we discuss innovative ways that businesses can reduce software development costs, without impinging on standard.
It may be surprising, but outsourcing software development can sometimes be lower in cost than doing it in-house. If you are struggling to find a suitable price, try casting your net slightly further afield. Many software developers are freelance, so can complete the work from anywhere once they’ve been briefed. Countries in Eastern Europe are renowned for delivering high-quality services for a reasonably low cost.
When outsourcing resource, make sure to carefully select a reputable company or individual, as the cheapest option is not always the best. Ask people for recommendations and expert opinions, as well as reading reviews or case studies, before making a final decision.
Communicating with your internal and external team is an easy and effective way to cut down on resource costs. Decision makers should provide detailed briefs and briefing sessions to ensure everyone is aligned with what is needed which will in turn reduce the number of rounds of amends. Schedule daily and weekly catch ups with all parties to discuss deliverables and progress. Following each meeting, log actions and time spent on each aspect, as this will help keep a track of resource costs.
High performance computing
When assessing software development costs for a business, high performance computing software is definitely something to be considered. Put simply, high performance computing (HPC) is the ability to process data and perform complex calculations at a high speed. It can complete certain tasks much faster than any human can, so will naturally reduce the need for resource and free up people’s time. In today’s data driven world, HPC is attracting the interest of people and industries that may not have considered it before. Not only does it reduce manpower, time and errors, HPC technology ensures workflow is streamlined and efficient.
Regularly reassess needs
As processes and ways of working change over time, so will your software needs. It’s therefore important to constantly reassess what you are using and what can be removed or replaced, as this will save money on development and running costs.
A good rule of thumb is if you use no more than 40-50% of a piece of software, you can probably live without it. An effected way to keep on top of software is to introduce either a monthly or quarterly check-in to assess whether programmes are used frequently or if various ones complete the same job.
Cut back on ‘nice to have’ features
If you’re looking to minimise development costs without scrapping a system all together, then it’s worth cutting back on the features that are deemed a luxury but not a necessity. Make sure you know the exact features you need before development starts, as this will cause figures to rise without you even noticing.
Start with basic features and, if this deems useful and valuable, only then should you look at options to expand on it. This will reduce initial costs as well as act as a trial period, to assess how clients or staff respond to it.
Ensuring you have a clear vision of what you need, and sourcing expert opinions will help your development team focus on what’s important, as well as reduce costs. Businesses should be malleable by constantly assessing their needs as processes and ways of working change. Although you know your business inside out, an external source may know more about its software development needs, so trusting in a third party should always be considered.