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August 6, 2015

Are You Falling for these Software Outsourcing Marketing Tricks?

It’s called Marketing by Harassment – those pesky, aggressive emails, phone calls and Skype connection requests that won’t take NO for an answer– all trying to get you to outsource your software development.

You must resist!

Don’t say yes because selecting a software outsourcing partner is not a quick, transactional decision. It takes time, research and learning to decide what service provider is best for your situation.

Maybe you’re desperate. It’s been months since you’ve been able to hire a decent developer. Some have quit. Management has had enough and asks you to look into global outsourcing as a way to get the software development resources you need. That could be challenging.

But wait! You just got an email this morning from an offshore firm offering software development services. In fact, maybe you got several emails from different firms. Maybe this won’t be so difficult after all.

Don’t be fooled. It is!

Let’s take a closer look at those emails (yes, even I get them) offering software development services. Aren’t they boring in their litany of the technical skills offered by their programmers? At least some of the emails are comical in their unusual use of English. Here are some examples and why they don’t work:
  • Show up and throw up the electronic version of when a salesperson would physically visit and force you to listen to a long-winded presentation about their company. “Our company has a strong track record with .NET, Java, JSON, RoR, XYZ, …”, whatever. Launching into a lengthy description assumes you just happen to be looking for the specific developer dudes they have on staff without exploring your challenges or issues first.

  • I visited your website and… wow really, they visited? Is that how you got my email address? This kind of intro again pays no attention to kinds of problems or challenges you are facing. It’s not like you have information on your website like, “our software quality is really lousy” or “Boy did our current offshore development team really miss the schedule this time!” And did they really click over to your home page? It feels like they are starting out the relationship with a lie.

  • Let’s schedule a meeting Whoa, hold on! Asking for a meeting in a first email is asking for too much too soon. They have not established any credibility or demonstrated any understanding of your challenges. Asking for a meeting to discover your specific issues requires more credibility than what can be provided in a first email.

  • Hi, I’d like to add you as a contact. On Skype… Why? Because I’ll have the honor of being connected to someone on the other side of the world? So you can interrupt my day whenever you feel like it to try to sell me something? No thanks.

  • I'd like to connect with you on LinkedIn… But I don’t know you. OK, I am not completely against connecting to professionals I don’t know but when their title includes the word “business development” and they’re at a software outsourcing company in a different country then their connection request is really a “can I sell to you” request. Connecting on LinkedIn to begin a sales process instead of a helpful professional relationship is on the dark side of LinkedIn.

If you are new to software outsourcing and the problems it can solve when done properly then you need more useful & valuable content rather than a pushy sales guy. Look for blog posts and eBooks that teach things about outsourcing like engagement types, typical rates, country locations and the best practices you should be looking for. Only then will you have the knowledge and confidence to make a selection wisely.

Accelerance can help you make sure your vendor makes sense for your needs with our "Software Outsourcing On Site Vendor Checklist

Andy Hilliard

As CEO, Andy leads and advocates for the globalization and collaboration of great software teams with companies in search of talent, innovation and a globally-distributed extension of their engineering function and culture. Andy founded the ground-breaking nearshore software development services company, Isthmus Costa...

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