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Offshore Software and Web Development, Bulgaria! : Making the choice and making IT work! - Advantage

This white paper is designed to assist companies who are looking for Offshore Software Development partners In Bulgaria in particular or in low cost countries in general. The paper covers the mechanics of finding an offshore software development partner, setting up the relationship and ensuring a successful and long-term partnership.

Benefits of Offshore Software Development in Bulgaria
Advantages :

  • Significant cost savings, up to 50% in certain cases.

  • The outsourcing company is able to release resources for high value-added and priority work and can concentrate on their core competence

  • While it can be quite difficult to recruit the expected competence in Western countries, it is a completely different scenario in Bulgaria, where there are many qualified IT professionals with good academic training.

  • For temporary bursts of activity offshore software development is beneficial as the outsourcing company can avoid expensive new recruitment or the high cost of local consultants.

  • Consulting and programming capacity is available at short notice without increasing long term personnel commitments.

  • Outsourcing company also reaps the knowledge gained by the offshore software development and consulting assignments.

  • Bulgaria has the necessary IT infrastructure to handle offshore development with ease

  • A pioneer in offshore software development the experience of Bulgaria in various offshore software development methodologies makes Bulgaria an ideal candidate

  • Bulgaria's experience in offshore software development has helped it move up the value chain. It has moved up from data entry, programming, project management, QA &Testing to product development, ideation and consulting. The Bulgaria banner offers all these services and is a one stop shop for all IT enabled services

Some clients outsource their programming needs by getting programmers from Bulgaria for short or long term projects to work on-site with their own design team. Others send whole or parts of projects directly to Bulgaria for offshore software development in Bulgaria.

Offshore Software Development Bulgaria, Disadvantages

Following are some problems, which may occur if both parties are not aware of how the offshore software development process should be set up.

  • Language and cultural barriers

  • Time differences

  • Technical communication problems

  • Skill mismatches

  • Quality discrepancies

  • Security problems

  • Lack of a repeatable process

  • Bad management and inflexible organizations

All of these can be avoided, by choosing the right offshore software development partner and working with proper and proven project management processes evolved during the earlier offshore development assignments.

Sometimes the Outsourcing company overlooks these risk factors, and looks at only the cost saving. In reality this could be a major trap.

Offshore Software Development Bulgaria, The Ideal projects

Not all projects are ideal for offshore software development. Any task involving proprietary knowledge, which can not be safeguarded with agreements, is not suitable for offshore software development. Very technical and complex tasks can also be bad projects, since the communication overhead may offset the cost advantage. Very small projects may also be unsuitable, since the time to prepare the specifications may dilute the cost advantage.

Apart from these exceptions, most projects are suitable for offshore software development in Bulgaria. Some of the possible areas could be:

  • Platform porting projects

  • Application conversion

  • GUI design

  • Database applications, migration and porting

  • Web enabling legacy systems and client server applications

  • Web development, designing, programming etc. e Commerce - projects

  • Technical Documentation, end user documentation and manuals

  • Software QA and Testing

  • Remote system administration

  • Remote database administration

  • Remote software maintenance and feature enhancements

Project Management - Offshore software development

To safeguard the development process there is a need for established practices where the offshore software development company keeps the the outsourcing company informed about the progress on a regular basis.

Both parties need to follow a communication methodology wherein they acknowledge communication immediately and also ensure that emails are not lost or left unanswered. This email communication plays a vital role as most of the dialog between the engineers and the client is done via this mode. We have found that communication between the offshore software development partner and the outsourcer through document sharing intranet sites like www.intranets.com or www.groove.net enhances value.

Email enables structured communication where as chat and phone should be used for technical clarifications and should be avoided for business communication.

It is also important that clear specifications are made. The specification clarification is an iterative process and it is recommended that this process be done with due diligence. Based on the specifications, engineers from the offshore software development company ask questions and get answers to get a full understanding of the project. Good specifications result in good quality software and considerable savings in time taken to complete projects. In case of research or in cases when the offshore software development company actually produces the specification, this process needs to be modified suitably.

Commercial agreements range from non-binding and binding estimates, fixed price or running hours.

Generally one contact person should be defined on each side, to facilitate clear coordination. Also, proper methods for testing should be defined in the initial meeting or discussion.

Software Piracy and theft

The government of Bulgaria looks at software exports as one of its key growth areas and has set up an environment, which very strongly discourages any and all forms of software piracy and theft of software in Bulgaria.
Ensure that your offshore software development partner signs an Intellectual Property Right Pledge and a confidentiality statement / non disclosure agreement as part of the initial stages of your partnership

Conclusions - Offshore Software Development Bulgaria

If you are careful in your selection process, we believe that you can achieve great success with offshore software development projects. Here are some key guidelines:

  • Find a good software development partner

  • Choose suitable projects

  • Possibly send a pilot project to the offshore software development company and evaluate the result

  • Work towards establishing a long term relationship

  • Visit your development partner (if possible)

  • Establish good management practices

  • Don't expect too much from the start. Offshore Software Development in Bulgaria is profitable in the long run; not just for one-time projects.


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