How to further develop an efficient relationship with your technology partner

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If you’ve been reaping the benefits of IT outsourcing for a while now, at some point, you will most likely decide to swap the popular body leasing model for an even more advantageous one.

Staying ahead of the wave of change in the business and technology landscape can be troublesome, even when using external support. Guiding and controlling your contractors at all project stages can feel tiresome, not to mention when it’s you who’s doing the thinking, planning, and embracement of change.

A technology partner can aid you in adapting to the fast pace environment and help you meet organisational goals. You might have already built a foundation for this partnership: you shared goals, analysed development processes, and identified pain points. You may have even started implementing solutions aimed at optimising your procedures to align with the internal and external teams.

What happens next? How do you ensure further cooperation is as smooth as possible? Being a technology partner to our clients, we have identified the following strategies as crucial to developing successful, long-standing relationships.

Delegate responsibility to your technology partner

One of the reasons businesses decide to move away from the body leasing model is because they prefer to have a partner who solves problems or who can delegate their IT issues entirely.

A knowledgeable and experienced partner will offer you perspectives on what you are trying to solve. Chances are, they’ve already been in the exact or similar project circumstances, while working with other clients in the industry or other lines of business.

Allow your partner to have enough room for new and creative thinking to occur, unless of course, you want to keep it all to yourself. If that’s the case, you’re better off sticking with the body leasing model.

Set expectations in areas with which you’d like your partner to give you a hand. Explain your pain points, urgencies, as well as goals you’d like them to help you achieve. Of course, deciding on which areas of responsibility to delegate to your partner is not easy.

Companies usually outsource issues that are outside of their core business activities. When we begin collaboration with our clients, we always start by asking them about their business model, their stakeholders, and operational challenges.

We then focus on areas that are hindering their business the most, as this is where we can help them immediately, for instance by solving an integration issue or speeding up the deliverables in the product backlog.

Start small and gradually increase the scope

Of course, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Don’t expect your partner to take on the entire responsibility from day one. Try outsourcing gradually. Start small by finding the best situation for your current business, while making room for the development and implementation of a long-term strategy.

Remember, it usually doesn’t make sense to hire ten people at once, as this can negatively impact the development team’s velocity and put a strain on communication.

From our experience, it’s beneficial to understand which type of solution will bring our client the most value. In the initial phase, only add enough people to address the main issue, while gradually hammering out the communication model and project documentation. Such an approach will not only save you money, but it will help laydown the groundwork for creating cross-functional synergical teams.

We advise to start with only a handful of specialists. This will give them an opportunity to learn your business, while allowing you time to understand how to work with an outsourced team. We recommend scaling up the team only when you see the positive effects and when our developers are up to speed on your challenges.

Continuously communicate and collaborate with your partner

In an ideal world, you could delegate all the work and responsibilities to the external team, and then sit back and relax. Your professional life can get easier with the right technology partner, however, unfortunately, this isn’t how things work.

You will need to stay in the loop and continuously participate in the alignment of processes at the intersection of your internal and external teams. Does the solution still match the situation in your business and technology landscape? Which aspects work well, and which need refinements?

In other words, be ready to communicate with your partner and work on your relationship continuously. Keep going, stay focused, and you will enjoy the fruits of your efforts.

As the relationship grows, you’ll gain a partner who will know your business very well. Whenever you’ll need additional support, their advice and reliability will be on point.

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