Should a Startup Outsource Software Development?

Jul 16 2015
By Joseph Knecht in Insights

The question of whether or not startups should be outsourcing Software Development for core products has been bouncing back and forth for some time. Should startups rely on software dev companies to develop something that’s so pivotal to the company’s success?

With the rapidly increasing popularity of Eric Ries’s Lean Startup Methodology, we’re seeing startups increasingly relying on outsourcing software development - and with good reason. David Cummings, founder of Pardot: one of Inc. Magazines fastest growing companies of 2012, successfully illustrates a few reasons startups can benefit from outsourcing core product software development. Here’s what David says:

  • Since most software dev shops build using reusable components, adaptation is much easier, both on the front and back ends.
  • More workflow and general collaboration tools are used, as well as management-specific collaboration tools, meaning deadlines will be met and software will have been tested over and over prior to release.
  • Some development shops have become specialized in a certain type of product, which adds expertise and best practices to the mix that weren’t previously part of the puzzle.
  • While this isn’t always the case, non-technical entrepreneurs do on average have a better understanding of how technology works - meaning communication between the software developers and the entrepreneur can occur more seamlessly than the last few decades.

What do we think? Let champions play to their strengths. Entrepreneurs are who they are because they can envision a solution to a problem, and then create that solution based on their ideas. The majority of these (myself included) may not know the ins and outs of programming or design. Software developers, on the other hand, can build great software.

By outsourcing software development entrepreneurs avoid having to worry about spending months writing code and instead can spend their valuable time on the growth of their business. To us this means spending time conducting interviews to validate an idea, collecting pre-orders or selling, rather than trying to figure out the best way to display their landing page on a mobile device.

You’ve heard what we think. Do you think startups should outsource their software development?

Joseph Knecht
Post by Joseph Knecht

Joseph Knecht is the CEO at Proteus and loves to cover the topics of entrepreneurship, digital transformation, and web product commercialization.

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