10 reasons to outsource SaaS development

18 Mar 2020
Kate, copywriter
The less distracted you are on the development of your SaaS product, the more you can centralize your mind on the business needs
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SaaS price model

What is SaaS development?

Hello, Neo. You take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe that SaaS no longer influences the businesses. You take the red pill – you stay in Softwareland, and I’ll show you how deep the SaaS industry is. Took red pill? Keep reading.

SaaS development stands for Software-as-a-Service, or we can also call it cloud-based software. Theoretically, this can be anything if you have a broad target audience, willing to purchase the subscription. However, in most cases, it includes programs for enterprises and business companies. These are CRM, office software, communicational tools, and apps for planning the work. The most vivid examples of SaaS are Google Docs, Slack, Canva, Salesforce, and Dropbox

With this model of software delivery, your users do not need to download applications on their desktops. The only thing required is Internet access. It doesn’t mean you give away your program for free. Users will pay, only not in a traditional way. With on-premise apps, they had to give away a perceptible sum of money at once. Of course, they could use the app for as long as they wanted. However, what if there’s no need anymore? Each update = additional expenses. 

That’s what makes SaaS so appealing in comparison – no need for a big initial purchase and payments for updates. The users transfer money monthly or yearly. As soon as they feel they don’t need the software anymore, they just unsubscribe. Here, you give the users the freedom of choice not only in whether to use the app or not but also on what conditions to use it. That’s why if you see the different plans of purchase, there’s a great chance you deal with SaaS.

SaaS development cycle

Why is SaaS in demand now?

  • it’s instantly available. No need for installation, daunting settings, and maintenance;
  • current internet speed allows its usage even with 4G;
  • it is cost-effective because you pay as you use, and only for the plan you need;
  • it works on any platform: computer, phone, and tablet giving you the flexibility to plan your day/week/month.

SaaS development cycle. What can you outsource?

SaaS development goes through 6 stages: envisioning, platform evaluating, planning, subscribing, developing, and operations. They iterate if you need new features and updates. To go through them you need to choose your model for outsourcing saas development or have an already operating in-house team.

ENVISIONING. This is a preparatory stage. Here you need to evaluate the market, define the qualities and behavior patterns of your target audience, and decide whether the world needs your project at all. Often, start-up creators think their idea is new and appealing when in fact, it is already successfully implemented with Salesforce or Microsoft. So, as soon as you offer something people cannot find anywhere else, make the identification of business needs, outline the budget, and create a short- and long-term plan to follow. During this stage, you’ll start looking for an outsourcing team to work on your project. If you don’t have tech expertise, you`ll need their pieces of advice in the forthcoming steps. 

EVALUATING. The first thing you do here is to clarify the requirements, and for that, you’ll need a good business analyst. You can hire a freelancer. However, good outsourcing teams have one. Then you decide what technical structure and functionality are necessary for your MVP – the first version of the app. The development team will help you to evaluate security and data privacy issues, choose management tools, and understand the limitations

PLANNING. This is a final preparation, where you formulate requirements and write documentation. The team gets the finalized plans concerning the project’s schedule. When will you have calls? Where will you report about the work that’s done? During that stage, these questions cannot remain unanswered. 

SUBSCRIBING. Here you choose the cloud-provider, make final decisions about architecture and pricing and, well, subscribe. In SaaS, it is a very important stage because it is difficult to migrate to other clouds later, especially if your project becomes larger. 

DEVELOPING. Here you feel the power of SaaS outsourcing to the fullest extent. The development team will create the core features for the chosen architecture. They develop front- and backend or your app, deploy and test. Later, you will need their support when implementing updates, tackling security issues and streamlining data synchronization. 

OPERATIONS. This is the final stage before you decide the next version would be good. Here you evaluate the quality of the product and how well it works with your target audience. After gathering the feedback, you decide what else can you do to improve the service and… here we are again, at the ENVISIONING stage. 

SaaS price

10 reasons to outsource your Software-as-a-Service development

Fast development and deployment

No, we do not underestimate the abilities of in-house teams. We objectively evaluate your ability to recruit each member fast. Think of it: you need to hire all saas developers: front and backend ones, a business analyst, a designer, and a QA manager. Oh, and you will want to hire a recruiter just to find these people. One of them must be a pretty good leader to become a Project Manager. Also, they need to possess great professional qualities. You don’t want the business analyst who has only read Dale Carnegie and a designer who works in Paint. That’s what makes the process so long. If you live in a big city, you have more chances to find people. If not, well, you`ll have to settle for what you have. Choosing to outsource, you can hire a whole team of people who can do what you need. Only, they will live in Eastern Europe. However, they will launch your project faster from there.

Less manager burden

The team you hire is already united because of a great chance that you are not their first outsourcing project. That’s why they already have their PM – the most experienced developer. They already know how to meet deadlines and what management strategies and tools are the best for them. Your task would only be to clarify the requirements and provide concise documentation. The team will work, and you will just check if everything satisfies you as a product owner.

Access to global talents and their affordable services

The economies of all countries are, to put it mildly, not the same. The more developed the country – the higher the salary. However, it doesn’t concern professional expertise. TALENT has no race, nationality, and gender. Therefore, if you feel like the budget burden ties your neck and the risk-taking is not your type – go for outsourcing. You will have to pay three times less to the dev from one part of the world, than from another.

saas price model

High quality

An in-house team can be less qualified because you settled for what your area could provide. Freelancers have a reputation for being unreliable deadline meeters. As for the outsourcing team, you can evaluate the solutions from all over the world or just another part of your country. The big fishes are there for you in this not so Pacific IT ocean. And you don’t even need a boat. Just the Internet.

Access to the latest technologies

If the devs in your area considered it a tragedy that Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7, it doesn’t mean it is like that everywhere. In informational technologies, you have a great demand if you know something that only a few knows (before it becomes mainstream). These technology-keen people do not hide their talents like monks in Tibet. They are willing to work, share info and drive your project. Only, be prepared that if you do need the latest technologies, you also need a bigger wallet.

Shift the focus on your business 

The less distracted you are on every aspect of your SaaS product, the more you can centralize your mind on the investors, the corporate culture of your company and your in-house team. Just the sheer fact that you outsource does not make it unnecessary to gradually build and improve your team. To erase any doubts, think of the saas outsourcing model other famous companies went for. The CEOs of Expensify decided to outsource the whole backend development just for their team to focus solely on front-end and business operations. Slack outsourced the design of its app and logo. AppSumo had PayPal integrated into its MVP.

Lower Costs

No, not only because of the placing of the team and their country’s economy. The reasons are so mundane some people do not even consider them. You need to invest in recruitment, buy an office or pay rent for it, provide computers and tables and chairs and paper towels… Everything for your team to feel comfortable. Oh, and coffee (we are talking about coding here). Outsourcing releases you from all of it because no one will expect you to deliver coffee from the USA to Poland. Just deliver your requirements on time. And the salary, of course.

However, you should know that the price model influences the cross-party relationship. That is why in-house and long-term outsourcing teams are the most dedicated. The one-time task with a fixed price is a short-term decision. They finished. You paid. Then they forget the name of your company. With a longer duration and bigger budget of the project, the dedication gets stronger. Then you’ll know that Jack has a three-year-old daughter who loves unicorns. And Jack will know that you like it when the task is done a little bit earlier than the deadline is. In outsourcing, it’s a rarity… that can become truth, according to SapientPro’s experience.

Flexibility after development

With an in-house team, you will have to find a job for the members after the project is finished. Outsourcing teams often understand that cooperation can end, and it’s okay. You can hire another development team that specializes better in maintenance. Or you can ask for the PM to reduce the people working on maintenance to 2-3. It won’t influence the relationships or the quality.

Scale-up and down

Need more people? Want to postpone the implementation of the feature? Strive to hire a designer from Portland because she draws such cute pictures? Everything that you need. You see, mostly, outsourcing teams consider you as their clients. So they understand that you can change plans or find a better solution. For an in-house team, you are a boss.

Accommodate peak loads

One day, your SaaS product is everywhere and you get so many customers the maintenance becomes a burden. Other days, it looks like a tumbleweed in the desert. Obviously, you will need fewer people during one period, and more during others. You can outsource saas development and maintenance during times of need. And as soon as you see the tumbleweed on the horizon – end cooperation or delay it for better times.

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Our first experience at SapientPro. The Founders (Part 2)
Kate, copywriter
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