IT Service Transition Checklist: How to Organize IT Transition Process from One Vendor to Another
Sometimes it happens — your business partners just don’t fit your needs anymore. The quality of services, approach, and a team of professionals may change, affecting the overall working results. In the world of software development, changing vendors can be an essential thing for your business’ sake.
Let us guess — you feel that something goes wrong. It may be the lack of quality, often delays, and a growing number of things that should be done (but aren’t finished eventually). No company deserves such treatment, so here you are — just about to sign the papers with another vendor.
We know how important it is to find a perfect service provider, so we prepared the list of vital points for your consideration. This time, you’re on the threshold of the long-lasting partnership.
1. Define the goal of your collaboration with the new team
There’s a very big chance to be unhappy with the outsourcing partnership if you don’t know what results you wanted to achieve at the beginning. We may call it a strategical part of your business activity which goes closely with tactical steps. Keeping in mind only a certain set of tasks (your tactics) means that you won’t define a good effect that outsourcing has on your business.
Here are examples of goals which are usually important for companies:
- Saving time for the work in which your team doesn’t have necessary skills.
- Increasing efficiency of your company.
- Lowering costs for hiring extra workers.
2. Find the necessary expertise
It seems obvious, doesn’t it? Before picking an outsourcing team, we check its experience, number of clients, and portfolio section. But what’s important in the software sphere is the fact that it deals with dozens of product types. For an entrepreneur, it’s important to review the types of apps or websites that were built by this vendor. Don’t hesitate to ask some extra questions if you’re looking for the long-lasting cooperation.
3. Go into detail when researching the market
After choosing several options, start learning details about the vendor’s quality of services. On this stage, it’s important to know about strong points and future challenges which may appear with time. You can also ask for some examples of work — to learn the quality of coding, for instance. The more details you know now, the bigger chances to make the right choice.
4. Learn the vendor’s specialization
Have you ever tried to focus all of your efforts on lots of things simultaneously? If yes, then the main point of the fourth feature is clear for you. Those companies who put their strength into a few product types (but not all of them), have all chances to gain success faster and make their customers way happier. Don’t try to find jacks-of-all-trades on the market. Vendors with a narrow specialization have deeper knowledge and more detailed expertise.
5. Look closely at the sales process
You should keep your eyes and ears open a lot earlier than on the stage of development. Pay attention to the questions you’re asked at the interview and what details you discuss with the team. The more information they get on this stage, the more product details will be considered during the production. Certainly, you’d like to get a spick-and-span solution, so let you project begin as early as possible.
6. Set reliable communication links with the vendor
Communication is the key to mutual understanding. Lots of questions can be solved much faster with less time and efforts. How to be sure that this specific vendor is on the same page with you?
- Consider the vendor’s time zone. It’s a must in the world of software as a huge number of companies is situated overseas — and lots of them are in Eastern Europe.
- Find a common language. In most cases, English becomes a mutual means of information exchange. Many members of software teams study English to speak it fluently — find out how your new vendor deals with it.
- Make a list of communication channels. Depending on the company, it may use different means of communication such as messengers (like Telegram or Skype), e-mail, or phones. The longer this list the better.
- Focus on the person you’ll contact with. It’s a usual practice for software companies when only several persons contact with a client. Find out who will be responsible for answering you in time and will know the latest news.
7. Check financial background
Starting new partnership with the outsource vendor is always a risk for a business. You should be ready to give some time, money, and efforts relying on the unknown business environment. To increase your confidence, check how stable the vendor is in financial terms. This information can give your new beginning a certain level of security.
8. Keep intellectual property by your side
There is such a big list of services that you could acquire with the help of software development companies. Before actually getting to work, discuss the intellectual property issue with your partners. In some cases, IP should always belong to you: for example, if it’s higher-end KPO work or a product with special features.
9. Consider technical certificates
When we’re about to begin a long-term partnership, we expect it to be on the highest possible level during the whole term of the collaboration. This is an obvious requirement which can be quite hard to achieve. To be sure your vendor will always provide you with a high quality, check its certificates and, what’s more important, ensure that the team follows all the tendencies and latest tools in the daily work.
10. Take care of high-security levels
Earlier, it was considered that only big projects required advanced security. But with time, the growing threat of malware concerns more and more developers from lots of countries. So you should learn how the vendor’s team deals with security issues. It will also be helpful to learn more about any quality certificates the company has.
When Double Checking Is the Main Thing…
Managing new partnership begins with a deep knowledge of your product. If you have a small business, there is no need to turn to a large company — it makes communication more complicated. Additionally, not all big companies have a profound understanding of complex product types, their specialization is much wider. We would recommend you start with a small project for the vendor — to test out all working aspects.