Offshore Software Development practices are challenging for both the sides – the client as well as the developers. Proper and regular communication; acquiring and using the latest existing technologies; maintaining warm professional relationships with the past clients and the untiring capacity and expertise in locating as well as acquiring new clients are some of the many crucial factors that control the success rate of an Offshore Software Development Company. It is highly important to find the channels that can help the developers in carrying out all the above mentioned activities as well as the others they can think of.
It is highly important that all the offshore software developers should understand the value of both the client acquisition and client management; especially if they are providing the services in an offshore manner. It is easier to find, fix and manage clients in the onshore software development scenario. The meetings can be fixed anytime without any constraint of time zone or language and the conveyance of ideas is better as compared to the online conversations. Though the latest technology and work ethics have led to reduction in the fuzziness of the online conversations, the establishment of trust and other moral emotions related to the professional work tends to get difficult if you cannot meet the client in person.
Having gained an idea about the different aspects of offshore software development in relation to the client acquisition and client management, let us proceed towards a detailed reflection on both the aspects of business development in an offshore software development.
Client Acquisition in Offshore Software Development Industry:
1 Finding the RIGHT channels:
- It is highly important to lay your hands on a proper channel that can let you get in touch with the right client base.
- There are a number of websites that allow you to make profiles and register as users so that you can find work abroad as well as in your region. These websites have brought a real boom in the offshore development industry as both the developer as well as the client has to just upload the information and then wait for the responses. The offshore software developers can respond to the jobs posted by the clients and the clients can then choose the professional depending on the work requirements and the work experience.
- Apart from these websites, the developers can also refer to the social networking platforms for the professionals that come with the facility of contact and message sharing. These channels may not connect the offshore software developers with the jobs directly, but they allow the developers to connect with the prospective clients and jobs.
- Finally, the social media has professional contact details of almost all the offshore software development companies and persons working there which can be utilized by the developer to get in touch with them and acquire the clients.
2 Establishing a communication:
- After having found the right clients, it is important that you convey your work experience, your abilities and talent to the clients. While doing so, one should take care that exaggeration should be refrained from and conveyance of work abilities as well as expertise should be thorough.
- Illustration or references of the work previously done by the developer can also help the clients to understand the work mettle in a better manner.
- The introductory sessions, be they online or offline, are very important for the establishment of mutual trust and understanding. The client should be convinced that you are the right choice for the job he or she has in current as well as any prospective jobs that may arise in future.
- The conveyance and understanding of requirements as well as expertise should be clear in the beginning only as it plays a very important role in client resource management.
3 Personal Involvement and IN-PERSON tasks:
- If you are working in a firm that provides offshore software development services, and that firm is planning for expansion of its client base, sometimes, the business developers have to be on their foot and actually visit the region the firm is seeking clients in.
- Interviewing the prospective clients, understanding their requirements, the challenges they face in getting things done at their side and an intensive study of the whole work process at their side are some of pointers that can help in such scenarios.
Having explored the client acquisition part of the offshore software development, let us move onto the client management part which is as crucial as the earlier one.
Client Management in Offshore Software Development:
1 Why Management?
- Though a number of people working in the offshore software development industry might feel that management of clients is inherent to the onshore development as the work flow is regular in that case; but the fact that the client you are currently working with can come up with new jobs and work prospects of any other kind in future can just not be neglected.
- The offshore software developers or the business developers should focus on NOT losing the clients owing to lack of communication or interest from their side. Once the work is over, time to time checks for any new work should be done.
- Apart from that, while you are currently working for a client, a random conversation regarding the work being done, the quality expectation and other requirements of the client will always have a positive influence on the professional relationship.
2 Conversation is the key:
- Establishing the right communication channel with the current clients as well as the prospective clients will not only help the offshore software development business in gaining trust in the industry but will spread the good word as well.
- Nothing works as good as the word of mouth and goodwill in the industry that works with the channels that are subject to misunderstanding (online communication).
- Having good references with positive reviews will enhance the business and help you in acquiring the new clients.
3 Truth and Honesty:
- Being truthful about the expertise and work experience will carry you and your work far away and will prove beneficial in the long run.
- Specifying deadlines and schedules, planning project deliveries, laying out the quality objectives and management plans and sticking to them shows your diligence and honesty which always attract new clients and maintains the previous ones.
Client Acquisition as well as Management are two important aspects of the offshore software development business and must be worked upon properly in order to grow your business.