Custom software: offshore outsourcing makes it affordable

Custom software is an expensive undertaking. The step towards in-house or contracted software development is usually only worth it if there is absolutely no other suitable standard software.

Depending on the approach you take towards custom software, your costs can quickly go through the roof. In comparison to finished solutions, it can be very difficult to estimate the budget for custom software – the development process is too complex. Therefore, when developing custom software the budget should be correspondingly flexible. And this is true for both the costs and the development time.

A further problem then arises when it comes to newer versions and the general sustainability of the software. Custom software can often lead to a costly dead end.

However, in many cases there is no other choice. This is especially true in the fields of research and development or for the control of proprietary hardware. But before blindly trying to find the next software developer, there are a few important points to keep in mind.

Custom software based on existing open source code

You don’t always have to develop all the components for custom software from scratch. A proprietary product can often be developed based on existing open source products or code packages. Therefore, it makes sense to look for related or technically similar software solutions.

If the existing open source software is well-documented and has a very active developer community online, this is very good for the custom software project. It means that there is a strong possibility for custom variations, expansions or the integration of existing codes for the custom software.

What hardware should the custom software run on?

Computers and operating systems are constantly evolving. Even when the manufacturers are committed to backward compatibility, one must expect that the software will fall victim to technological advances at some point. It is usually best to use a platform independent approach since it lets you avoid at least some of the risk.

Plugins and macro applications are applied to an established software package and are suitable for business software. Plugins for Office and SAP products are some of the more common uses. However, many smaller applications now support plugins these days. Just like in the open source approach, this makes the programming relatively straightforward and the host system developed by the manufacturer ensures system compatibility.

Java is particularly suitable for the largest possible system independence. Java applications can run on Windows, Max, Linux and a range of other interfaces. The development environments from Oracle are free and are continuously updated and ensure the necessary independence of the hardware and operating systems.

Microsoft’s .NET environment is recommended as the code platform for custom software that only needs to run on Windows. .NET is a run-time environment for Windows programs and a collection of class libraries, programming interfaces and utilities.

.NET developers write their programs with the development environment Visual Studio, also from Microsoft, which automatically changes the code into executable programs with the help of the .NET run-time environment. The advantage is that .NET can be used with Java, C++, C#, PHP and many other languages, and the programs can be run on a variety of Windows hardware and Windows versions.

In contrast to the purely proprietary C++ software, .NET applications are much more flexible and also more future-secure.

Affordable custom software from India

You can have Indian offshore providers develop your custom software to help keep the costs in check. The country has a relatively low level of salaries, and thanks to its high population and many years of investment into tech-savvy training it has a large pool of software developers. Many of them work as IT professional for international clients, which has brought India into the top spot on the global IT outsourcing market. Currently, around 55% of all offshore outsourcing services in the IT sector come from India.

If you would like to benefit from the cost advantages and expert knowledge of an Indian IT developer, we can help.

outsourcing4work can provide you with an IT programmer for every possible language and development environment. Thanks to our extensive network of professional providers, we can easily find a suitable developer for your individual software. These professionals can be hired for a project at a fixed price, or as temporary employees. Teams of multiple software developers who work exclusively for you are also possible.

With our project managers from Europe who specialise in Agile, Scrum and Kanban, we will take over the entire coordination of the project for you.

You conclude the contract directly with us as a European company, meaning that you are not dependent upon the reliability of an Indian partner. This provides you with predictability and protects you from unpleasant surprises.