Offshore outsourcing is a perfect answer to the slow economy that we have today. Offshore web design service provider not only offers you the desired expertise, but also allows you to focus on core managerial aspects of your businesses.
However, there are some issues faced by service seeker when he or she is dealing with the offshore agencies. The article will cover these barriers and essential tips that will assist you in overcoming these barriers, which will again help you save $ !
Let’s start with:
Time Constraint and Work Ethics
Dealing with an offshore service provider remains to be a risky affair due to the huge difference in the time zone. However, being a service seeker it is your responsibility to make sure if you are getting support 24 hour basis as per contractual agreement or not. If not, then decide a time slot wherein you will be interacting with the service provider regarding progress of the project. Prior to the time window, one should try to grasp the work ethics the service provider maintains within his team.
NOTE* Don’t get carried away by the level of activeness and energy they show during initial interaction!
Barriers of communication are present very much inside the organization too, which is why the question of offshore communication barrier cannot be avoided. Most of the outsourced projects end up in wasteland due to communication gap between client and the service provider. No matter how talented your programmer or designer is, if he lacks communication skills then the project can go kaput before it even begins.
Prior to official interaction, a client should make sure that all the requirements are initiated well in advance and that too in the most unsophisticated manner. Failure to do the same will result in later stage confusions, frequent alterations and the end product might turn out to be somewhat different from your expectations.
So how do we overcome communication barrier?
The best way to avoid communication gap is to initiate more humanly interaction in the form of video chats or even vocal communication. Communication through emails should be kept limited to documentation stuffs. Communication barriers also include differences in accent, as most of us do have regional touch in our style of speaking.
India is popular for its quality programmers and is also one of the largest offshore outsourcing markets. One of the most common issues that service providers in India face while dealing with clients from the United States is the difference in their accent, which is inevitable. However, I advise my staff to coordinate with the client through Skype Live chat and if things get complicated, the clients are always motivated to use samples to show what they actually want!
I have always been a loyal advocate of active client participation as I believe clients do have a very important role to play. A client’s role is much more than of a mere service seeker, but they should take the responsibility of staying updated on a timely basis, just to make sure things are as per their desires and specifications.
There should be a clear communication window with 100 percent transparency that sees daily or a weekly reporting model to the client.
Differences pertaining to culture and traditions are somewhat an integral part of offshore business limitations. Being an intelligent client you should be informed in advance about the culture and practices of the host region. Ignoring the aspect might land you in specific trouble that might delay the progress of the project.
For instance, handing over a content writing project to a service provider in Kazakhstan or China would be a no-good idea. However, if you are outsourcing the same to other Asian counterparts such as India then, you are definitely on a roll!
Contractual obligations (Terms & Conditions)
When a client presents his business model to the service provider, there are lists of expectations that he or she has in mind. Prior to contractual agreement, the terms and conditions need to be analyzed carefully by both the parties to make sure they are on the same page and the same doesn’t create issues at a later stage of the project.
Things that should be clarified before signing a contract
The first thing that crosses our minds is the mode of payment and how well the payment criterions are defined in the contractual agreement. The payment acceptance norms and objectives are the vital information that should be clearly defined in the contract copies held by both the parties.
Number of changes, revisions or modification requests entertained by the service provider should also be mentioned / highlighted. Critical information like these should be discussed in advance to avoid last minute glitches or tantrums on behalf of the service providers.
If payments are defined as per the targets achieved or if there are time constraints defined for payment, then the respective information should also be highlighted in the payment section of the contract. This move will not only make things clear but will also motivate the service provider to stick to the defined schedule.
I hope the article was able to feed of your learning curve when it comes to Offshore Outsourcing, which is indeed a healthy practice in business. Do share the information and if you liked the article, do care to comment.