how to evaluate software vendors

How to Evaluate Software Vendors for your Next Development Project 

When it comes to business software, the question isn’t whether you need it; instead, the question is which software you need. And when there are hundreds of potential answers, deciding which one to choose becomes very difficult. To thoroughly assess a solution, you must first develop a comprehensive evaluation approach. This approach should consider several factors, including the technical capabilities of the tool, the performance of the vendor, and the overall ownership cost. You will also need to take account of company-specific processes and regulations.

How to evaluate software vendors

 Understand Your Project First

Before outsourcing your project, here are some steps to understand your project:

  • Choose between an MVP and a sophisticated solution with variable criteria.
  • Assess a project’s scope — decide on the future product’s objective, identify the questions to ask a potential vendor, evaluate the personnel and equipment required for effective app development, etc.
  • Estimate the project budget – small projects with precise needs are simple to calculate, whereas big projects with changing requirements require frequent reevaluation.
  • Establish deadlines – you must specify the deadlines that cannot be postponed or changed.
  • Choose a software development process model — waterfall, incremental, Agile, RAD, and others are available.

Vendor Criteria

After evaluating your project, it’s time to select an outsourcing provider. To assist you to select the best vendor for your needs, we’ve compiled a list of criteria and suggestions from customers that chose (or didn’t choose) Aalpha information systems.

  1. Skills and Qualifications

Nothing is more vital than your software outsourcing partner’s competence. Defining a tech stack and skill set needs early on reduces the number of possible suppliers.

Preferably, your program needs the top three technical abilities listed above. Concentrate on the technical skills that significantly affect the user experience and overall program quality. If they’ve worked on projects comparable to yours, it’s a strong indication that they know what it takes to execute your project effectively.

  1. Work Experience

Everything stated regarding tech expertise also applies to industrial experience. Software service providers with years of experience in your industry will have significant subject-matter knowledge.

That doesn’t mean a vendor can’t learn about your niche. However, it takes much longer for them to catch up. If you want to get started fast, seek a vendor that already understands your domain and can jump right in.

  1. Team Size

Before contacting a technological partner, determine the project’s estimated scope. If your project will take less than 500 hours, employ freelancers. If your project is more complex, you have three options: small, medium, or big software outsourcing firms. The vendor’s capacity to scale the software development team up or down is one of the most critical factors. More prominent suppliers have more significant internal resources and a larger applicant pool.

  1. Pricing & Engagement Methods

Examine the vendor’s typical hourly charges (by seniority and job specialization). Compare it to the regional average. Then give the vendor the project scope and ask him to create a ‘virtual’ team of experts qualified to deliver it.

You should know the project’s scope and end objective. In reality, the engagement model you select determines the project costs (fixed price, time & material, dedicated team). Choose your engagement model and calculate.

IT engagement models

Good read: IT outsourcing pricing models

  1. Communication

Since English is the global language of technological communication, a software development firm should have English conversational ability. While junior and medium experts may grasp customer requests, claims, and recommendations at an intermediate level, senior team members must understand them instantly. And so forth.

Communication frequency and openness are also critical from the start and throughout your outsourcing partnership. Expect weekly video conference calls, emails, and daily instant messaging. Regular status updates will assist your engineers in focusing on the most critical tasks.

  1. IP and Data Security

Outsourcing software requires protecting your Intellectual Property, ideas, and rights. During the assessment step, you must investigate the vendor’s legal procedures and formal agreements to safeguard your intellectual property and business. Here is a list of topics to discuss with a technology partner:

  • NDA Non-Disclosure (NDA).

An NDA prevents your concept from being revealed to a third party. Not a problem for Aalpha information systems. It may be signed before a customer discloses his concept or before the project begins. An NDA agreement protects your idea even after the project is over.

  • Patents.

Your vendor’s agreement must specify that your business owns the code, product, and assets like designs, wireframes, documentation, and diagrams.

  • Non-Employment Accord (NEA).

A non-employment contract protects both parties. On the one hand, no business will hire or recruit your workers and you will have to do the same for them.

Final Thoughts

The best software development companies always study their services, portfolio, and references before partnering. This step may seem tedious, but it will help you save money, prevent future misunderstandings, and eliminate any hidden project management errors. This advice is thus available: to help you assess your prospective software development partner fast.

Hope you’ve understood how to evaluate software vendors, for more information contact us today.

Written by:

Muzammil K

Muzammil K is the Marketing Manager at Aalpha Information Systems, where he leads marketing efforts to drive business growth. With a passion for marketing strategy and a commitment to results, he's dedicated to helping the company succeed in the ever-changing digital landscape.

Muzammil K is the Marketing Manager at Aalpha Information Systems, where he leads marketing efforts to drive business growth. With a passion for marketing strategy and a commitment to results, he's dedicated to helping the company succeed in the ever-changing digital landscape.