How to Choose a Tech Partner

According to the 2016 Strategic Partner Index Survey (CIO), business and the IT sector need to more often work on relationships of trust and collaboration for the mutual benefit.

6 min read, Nov 29
tech-partner-choice

You have an idea of a digital product on the table but don’t have or can’t hire an in-house team to accomplish it. So the question arises - how to find a reliable tech partner?

If you’ve never been preferring outsourcing project development it can become a real trial. But there’s something you can do about it.

What to think about in advance

Surprisingly the brainstorm here shouldn’t start with thinking about your technology partner features. It should start with truly thinking about your project. Its goals, features and other specifics that you desire to present and goals set to achieve with the future product.

This way you’ll define what you should look for in an agency you’ll plan to build a short— or long-term relationship with. Surely, you don’t have to determine everything from A to Z but some things need to be shaped up in advance and namely:

Project type

Will it be a solution for internal use or you plan to roll it out to customers? Is it a simple website or more of a web application that requires multiple services to be integrated via APIs? Or it’s a mobile app? Then should it be available for Android or iOS? Or you want to cover the entire target audience including users of alternative devices?

There are a lot of questions that can continue this list. They don’t require deep tech expertise to answer but a crucial for outlining before looking for a technology business partner. Other factors including the choice of the tech stack, team size and type, budget and so on will be deduced from it.

Collaboration model

Are you sure you’re ready to disrupt the market with a full-version solution? Have you considered a more consistent approach using, for instance, the methodology like MVP to put the product through testing in real conditions?

What about operational arrangements? Do you prefer to invite a dedicated team or entrust to a remote or even offshore team overseas? Language? Time zone? Hiring a technology outsourcing partner has its pros and cons but the most important is to define which model fits in your workflow the best.

Plan before cooperate

Budget and deadlines

Leaving these aspects over flexible can lead to project failure or not planned expenses that can be destructible especially for startups and small business. Besides, they initially can significantly narrow down the search area and presenting the issues that may require compromises.

Deadlines can be dictated by the burning level of problems as well as Time to Market issues. The budget may itself marks limits possible types of technology partners and contract payment options like going fixed-price or hourly basis. It also defines the level of affordable experts required for product development.

What to look for in a tech partner

Once done it’ll be easier to complete the checklist for the candidates to become a technology partner of your business. You can add specific requirements for the following list.

Award-winning

The IT market is not the one where companies chase after prizes but rather do their best to find recognition through acknowledgment from customers. Such services like Upwork and Clutch not only keep track of the existing providers but also distinguish the most notable of them.

Innovative approach

A technology partner role for beneficial collaboration it’s not just about providing services. It’s about building a relationship based on mutual support through providing guidelines" so each party could achieve its goals without making difficult the path of the other.

Expansive portfolio

Word testimonials aren’t enough in the digital world. Nothing can show proficiency as the accomplished solutions that can be evaluated visually or better practically even if it’s just a product demo. It’s important that the portfolio includes at least a few similar to your projects.

Extensive services offered

IT solutions before, during and after the development require support so even if you plan a short-term contract you should ensure that the technology partnership agreement can provide your web or mobile application with further proper maintenance and resources for it.

Track record of success

The best reviews are always from the ones who have been in your shoes and namely other clients that have chosen a certain development company to fulfill their needs. Impartial, verified if possible opinion will help to start building your own giving yourself a fair advantage during the negotiations.

Company growth

It’s important to see the company dynamic to ensure its stability and reliability during the whole period of collaboration. Looking up the history and numbers concerning the team funding will be helpful to identify the status for the nearest future.

How to start successful technology partnership

However, as the majority of checklists, there are only reminders of the most crucial aspects that can’t be checkout without requesting the help of the opposite party. Only efficient communication during provider acquisition and solution development can result in productive collaboration.

Converse and discover

Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions. Even though there are tons of info published on the website you can’t be sure in its actuality and applicability to your project. The fewer uncertainties the fewer doubts now and unpleasant surprises in the future.

Also, don’t focus just on texting even if you run a technology partner international search. Prepare and run the actual conversation to ensure the candidate responsiveness on the sales, project management and if possible C-levels. Depending on the chosen process pattern it can be a necessity anyway, that's why it’s important to establish contact as early as possible.

Communicate to collaborate

Meet and enlighten

The more you get closer to contract the deeper knowledge about the company you should have. Interview the developers that can be on your team to verify their expertise and personal qualities. It’ll also help to verify the trustworthiness of the technology partner strategy.

During communication, it’s important not to just set project and management requirements. It’s also vital to present your goals and ensure their comprehension to minimize the risks of misunderstanding. It’ll help to set an efficient workflow like agile and achieve aims timely with your technology business partner in the chosen environment.

Few words concerning an actual search. Obviously, research should start online. The help of hiring and social networking platforms will shorten the list of candidates and simplify the process. Through marketplaces like Upwork, you can even establish contracts and monitor its status 24/7.

Digital transformation comes across industries. That’s why even if you didn’t form this kind of cooperation before someone in your network probably already has and can recommend a reliable technology partner within your budget.

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