Down the rabbit hole of finding the right software development partner

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Choosing the right software development company for your product is like hiring a construction crew to build your new house. As this decision may result in your failure or success, we want to give you 1, 2, 3-steps-guide that will allow you to find exactly your partner. Today, we will talk about the first step: searching and filtering the companies.

What is the first thing to do?

You should go and ask your friends about their partners, but if their partners don’t fit into your framework, start searching special platforms providing you a ready list of companies with already highlighted information about them with categories and filters, so you can very efficiently filter the companies and find the most interesting ones for you.

Don't just take the top 10 companies from a platform. They can pay for being in the top in some kind of categories. Try to go deeper. All platforms have their reviews, but try to read a review between the lines, as all platforms have great reviews.

The second thing that you need to think about is budgets, usually on those kinds of platforms, you may understand what budgets companies work. For example, in case you have $5,000, it may make no sense to write to the company, whose minimum budget is 100,000. On the other hand, if you find a company that works with a small budget and a big budget at the same time, that's totally normal to contact it.

The third point to regard is visual information. You need to like what they do. Companies need to find a good way to present what and how they do that. Their portfolios must display how the product looks like, for whom it was done, and how successful the people became.

Also, take into account your personal criteria, feel yourself, trust yourself. It’s better not to go in the opposite direction of your way of thinking. As at any moment you will feel dissatisfaction with the work you do. In addition, cultural synergy is very important. So, you have to filter countries, which you think will be close to your vision.

Choose what is comfortable for you and what will be convenient. Don't push on yourself. Thus, taking into account these criteria, we would short down our list to 50 companies and stop searching.

Our next step is, actually, calling the representative of the company. You don't need to connect all 50 companies that are on your list.

Firstly, you need to make your own analysis. It takes time, but you need to search on that website, like checking for industry experience, and again reviews. They usually also have LinkedIn, so you can even try to connect with their previous customers and to talk with them. Check whether those people are at least real.

You should analyze the case studies. They are all presented very well. Try to understand how long it takes to accomplish such kinds of projects, what kind of teams they organized, is the team big, what kind of process they use.

Also, when analyzing a company's website, it's important to check their social media and see the actual company, because a website is created in order to sell, but social media is usually created more for the people who work inside the company. When you see live pictures, you can feel more about the company.

Relating to vision of the design, you may refer to such platforms as Behance and Dribbble, to see how they build their design. When we talk about development, it is not only about code and tools, it is also about the look of your future platform, and design here is very important. You need to have the good UI and UX. Design is not about beautiful things, it's about useful things. We personally recommend you to choose the companies who have design and development departments under one roof. If they work isolated from each other, or after each other, the final product will not be successful. It must be a mutual work.

Those companies who have design departments are more product-oriented than coding-oriented. Product is not only about coding, it's about full cycle design, business analysis, software development, coding in the sense of quality assurance, launching, etc.

So, companies taking responsibilities like LinkUp, work like this, and we take responsibilities for everything, because when you have different people for different things, then you have shared responsibilities. It means no one is responsible.

Actually, we have 4 steps of searching and filtering the process:

  1. Making a shortlist from searches of efficient companies on platforms.
  2. Choosing the criteria by which you will filter them (budgets, location, portfolios).
  3. Personal attitude, culture synergy.
  4. Shortlisting to 10 companies by checking them.

Now you are ready to move to the next step of calling the representative of the company and to dig deeper into each of them, to understand their vision and approach to the product development.

How to connect those 10 companies that are left in your list, check the next series.