Essential Questions You Must Ask a Potential Software Development Company
Embarking on a new software development project is a big deal and decisions should not be made lightly. A lot of time and thought needs to be put into all the specifics. One of the most important things is finding the right software development company. You want to make sure that you find the right developers that understand exactly what you want, how you want it implemented and fit with your project.
It may take some time before you find the perfect software development partners and it can be a daunting prospect especially if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for. There will be basic questions that you’ll ask, such as cost, timeline etc. but there are other essential questions that you should ask to help you gauge whether they are the right partner for you.
This guide includes advice on how to go about choosing the perfect software developers and questions you need to ask to make sure they are right for your project.
Clearly outline your requirements
Before starting the process, you need to make sure that you are clear about your project requirements. You will have to provide clear project specifications for the software developer so it’s important that you have these in mind or even better documented so that you don’t miss any important components.
Another thing that is important that you have in mind before you start searching for a developer is your budget. There’s no point meeting with anyone that is outside of your budget so if you know what this is beforehand you can eliminate some initial prospects.
You need to make sure you have set a realistic deadline and when meeting a potential developer, it’s important you ask them for an estimated completion date as this will determine whether they can work under pressure or not. If their estimated deadline date is far beyond yours, they may not be the right candidate.
Have a pretty clear idea of design and visual components before meeting with any developers. The more information you can provide the developer the easier it will be for them to understand the scope and how effectively they can produce this.
The next thing to do is prepare a list of questions you want to ask them. They don’t have to be technical questions; they can be a mixture of engineering and software questions and more personal questions about the company and the team.
Have you ever worked on a project like mine before?
Once you have explained your project and brief to them this is a great question to ask. They may not have worked on a project exactly like yours but this question could reveal whether they’ve worked on a project within the same industry, with the same features or using the same technology all things that could help when it comes to your project.
Can you tell me about your company and the team I’ll be working with?
No doubt they will have an answer to this question prepared but how they answer this question will tell you a lot about how they position themselves and will give you an idea of the company’s personality and values.
What technologies do you specialise in?
You may already have an idea of which technology is needed for your project and in that case, this will determine whether they are experts in this but will also whether they are able to adapt quickly and efficiently to using new technologies. If you’re not sure what technology is needed for your project make sure you ask them, you’ll know if they are a company worth working with because they will be able to propose exactly what is needed and explain why.
Can you tell me about a previous project you have worked on and how you made sure it was completed successfully?
This will enable you to understand more about how the company and team works, how they manage their relationships with their customers and what to expect if you choose them as your developer.
Note: expand on this question by asking them whether they ran in to any obstacles or challenges whilst working on this project and how they overcame them.
What is your software design and development process?
You want to make sure that the company you choose has a reliable and consistent process that ensures quality control. You also want to make sure that they will add value to your project and offer their expertise to support and develop your project not just take instructions and deliver.
These are the main questions you will want to ask to gain a better perspective of the company, however, you may also want to ask questions such as:
- How and at what stages will you communicate with me?
- What is my role throughout this project?
- Do I get support once my project has been delivered?
- What happens if I’m not satisfied with my project?
The answers to these questions should help you to decide whether you want to work with a software development company and determine whether they will deliver your project as you desire.