Tag Archives: Outsourcing

Traditional business models, one where the boss provides office space and any necessary equipment for the job, are gradually becoming a thing of the past. The formation of new models of business relations, together with quarantine restrictions, has become almost canon for hiring for a specific task, rather than the permanent maintenance of an entire worksite. 

So now the moment arises when you need to start a conversation to find the perfect candidate who can fulfill the order and … here is where we stop to consider our options.

How do we choose from the thousands of applicants? How do we assess each applicant’s qualification for the job? And, after all that searching and sorting, how do we decide who will provide us with the results we are looking for?!

 

Let’s Look at our Options 

Freelancer, I choose you!

Few people in the modern world have not heard the terms “freelance” and “outsourcing”. For now, let’s focus on the first one. In some cases, the term freelance is associated with a traveler, a person who can find work wherever he is. It’s romantic, isn’t it? And some consider this type of self-employment to be… almost unemployment. Each of these opinions is true in its own way and here’s why.

In the modern hiring market, the freelancer is the most competitive niche; name, experience, and quality of the work performed are valued in it, but you should not expect that after one order they will stay with you forever. That is, freelancing is a workshop format in which an employee is an independent specialist and can, and do, lead several projects for several clients at the same time.

So it would seem that here he or she is – the ideal worker. Unfortunately, a long-term working relationship was not meant to be, for whatever reason. 

The lack of guarantees is the biggest disadvantage of such employees. In fact, in most cases, the assignment ends up being done incorrectly and may cost additional expenses because, as they said, “they did it”. All additional services, such as the number of edits, are negotiated separately and have their own price list. Plus, freelancers rarely use formal tax avoidance contracts. And as you know: no document – no person.

 

Outsourcing can take care of these headaches

What is the difference between hiring a freelance employee and outsourcing? First of all, let’s figure out what outsourcing is. 

Outsourcing – in simple words – means hiring a mini-company that will take on all aspects of a specified project or project with a full set of related contracts. Outsourcing the work means transferring all responsibility for the implementation of a long-term project to a group of specialists, each of whom performs a specific task.

An indisputable advantage of outsourcing is that the outsourced company or business takes on full management of the project or task during the period specified in the contract, which means that your product receives long-term service. In addition, outsourcing work will allow your business to reduce the cost of maintaining individual systems and infrastructure.

 

As a general rule, the following are given to outsourcing:

  • Accounting Transport 
  • Advertising Services 
  • Web Programming
  • Website Development and Maintenance
  • Development of Various Startups, etc. 

 

The Big Question: Who is safer to give money to?

Now, having a clear understanding of each, it’s time to answer the question, which is better: 

 

Freelance or Outsourcing?

Let’s remember the key point – responsibility. For a freelancer, his or her reputation and name are at stake, but no one can give a 100% guarantee that at any point they will not want to change occupations or return to regular employment.

 

Completion of a task that is outsourced is a matter of long-term cooperation in which, most often, both parties are interested. While taking responsibility and documenting it is more costly, this format gives certain guarantees of performance, moreover, it allows the customer to freely deal with other issues while receiving reports on the work being done.

Outsourcing is about paying a little more while eliminating worry about the results because it offers internal communication, transfer of all developments, preservation of confidentiality, and in the end, the opportunity to rest while the work continues. Of course, everything depends on the importance of the goal and the funds allocated for it, but in business, everything is like the proverb: a miser pays twice.

With mobility, technical expertise, and a deep immersion to provide quality business results with robust solutions would soon endow Itera Research as one of the top software solutions and services providers in Ukraine at GoodFirms.

 

Overview of the Company:

Founded in 2004, Itera Research is a software and hardware development company catering to the International market with outsourcing and outstaffing. Located in Kharkiv, Ukraine, and having the representative offices in Germany and the USA, the company has gained many competencies to serve the clients of Education, Smart City, Tourism, Logistics, and Finance. 

Moreover, the company offers IoT, eLearning, CRM, ERP solutions for business automation, and various projects for global clients. The experts profess flexible and quality solutions to the clients by converting the most ambitious business ideas into profitable, secure, durable, robust applications. 

Itera Research gives first-class client service rendered by PMI and UPMA certified managers assigned to every client. Besides this, the group offers Web, Mobile, Desktop custom software development – UI design and coding, implementations on any CMS – outsourcing/outstaffing – Cloud solutions.

 

GoodFirms’ Research Process:

GoodFirms is a research and reviews online platform that judges different business people who provide their services to the service seekers by exercising its inclusive critique process based on the three primary perspectives, viz Quality, Ability, and Reliability. 

Same way, the GoodFirms unit also assessed Itera Research and found that with its outstanding services and solutions, the firm gets entitled as the leading company in e-commerce development services. 

Besides this, the researchers also concluded that Itera Research would soon get dubbed amongst the leading software development and mobile app development at GoodFirms.

The summary from the evaluation, as mentioned-below, describes Itera’s working patterns.

 

Software Development:

Itera Research produces various solutions for different industry verticals that traverse mobile, web, and desktop platforms. The professionals offer a full-suite package of custom software products and application development services.

Itera Research holds a team of project managers, developers, and quality assurance engineers who have experience in developing solutions satisfying clients’ technological business requirements, including E-commerce, IT & Telecom, Education, Healthcare, HoReCa, Tourism, and Entertainment industries. The group takes full responsibility for rendering to clients with quality solutions within time. 

At Itera Research, professional engineers combine their experience and ability to create software and ensure the development process is effective and reliable. The group also guarantees that systems developed matches with high-performance requirements for maximum secure domains.

Thus, equipped with such an experienced and knowledgeable engineers’ team catering to the clients’ requirements would soon bequeath Itera Research as one of the top software development companies in Ukraine at GoodFirms.

 

Mobile App Development:

At Itera Research, the app developers accouche mobile app services compatible with devices such as tablets and smartphones that are used much more often than traditional PCs. Itera Research practices in developing mobile apps, including cross-platform mobile applications such as iOS, Android, Windows 8+.

Moreover, the professional team creates apps to help the clients positively impact the world. Besides this, the app development team specializes in native and hybrid solutions that span millions, change attitudes, and set the standard for innovation in industries. 

The app development team employs a thoughtful approach to design, usability, content, and performance to produce pixel-perfect apps across iOS and Android devices. Thus, collaborating with incredible businesses to bring ideas to life and transform the way iOS and Android communities interact with mobile brands would soon facilitate Itera Research as one of the top mobile app development companies at GoodFirms.

 

Ecommerce Development:

Web commerce requires unique solutions emphasizing a safe and fast processing payment system, a reliable alert system, and simple purchase management. The professionals hold expertise in e-commerce technologies guaranteeing 100% satisfaction for clients.

Itera Research produces Content management systems and eCommerce solutions of any size and complexity. The developers’ team holds vast experience in implementing eCommerce projects that allows them to develop, test, and support eCommerce applications to assure a resilient and efficient system for marketing and selling clients’ services or products to the world.

The developers fully integrate order processing, receiving payments, and inventory management with clients’ sites and give them an ideal shopping experience. Thus, offering high-performance e-commerce solutions for online businesses right from startups to enterprise-grade e-commerce stores facilitates Itera Research as one of the top ecommerce development companies in Kharkiv at GoodFirms.

 

About GoodFirms

Washington, D.C. based GoodFirms is a maverick B2B research and reviews company that helps in finding software development, mobile app development, and e-commerce development agencies rendering the best services to its customers. GoodFirms’ extensive research process ranks the companies, boosts their online reputation, and helps service seekers pick the right technology partner that meets their business needs.

 

About the Author

Anna Stark is presently working as a Content Writer with GoodFirms – Washington D.C. based B2B Research Company, which bridges the gap between service seekers and service providers. Anna’s current role lingers in her to shape every company’s performance and critical attributes into words. She firmly believes in the magic of words and equips new strategies that work, always in with ideas, something new to carve, and something original to decorate the firm’s identity.

 

“We are really proud of being named a 2020 Clutch Leader amongst the top B2B companies in Ukraine!” – Dmitry Kornilich, CTO

From artificial intelligence to 5G to edge computing, there are so many up-and-coming trends and technologies in the software development space that it can be hard to keep up! However, there’s no need for you to worry – that’s exactly why we’re here!

Since 2004, we’ve been established as a software and hardware development company providing outsourcing and outstaffing to the international market. We’re headquartered in Kharkiv and we have representative offices in Germany and the US. 

Since our inception, we’ve gained a number of competencies that allow us to declare our expertise in education, tourism, logistics, smart city, and finance. These include, but aren’t limited to, IoT, eLearning, CRM, ERP solutions for business automation as well as a variety of state projects for Ukraine, Germany, and the US.

Many of our projects have been featured on our Clutch profile. These client reviews help validate our successes and recognize our team members’ contributions to their projects.

“Working with Itera has been a pleasure for us. . . It is also worth noting that the majority of development is hitting the mark on the first try with minimal adjustments and revisions.” – CD, Music Distribution Company

Seeing the satisfaction and happiness that our clients have after we’ve delivered their solution is validation enough, but it is with much excitement and eagerness that we announce our exciting news.

Recently, we received an award for being a 2020 top software development company in Ukraine. This means we’ve been highlighted by Clutch for being a leader in our field and having a strong commitment to high-quality customer service.

With this, we would like to recognize our customers. Thank you so much for your partnership! Our team couldn’t have received this award without you. We take pride in being your development agency and look forward to our future work with you.

Get in touch with us if you’d like to start your next project!

Quite often, we hear the information about gaps in communication between the client and the remote developer: the developer does not respond to messages quickly; the developer does not get in touch in time; the client can’t control the order of task completion, and change task priority; the developer didn’t do the task as the client wanted or the client clarified the changes in Skype, and the developer relied on the description in the email; the developer spent more hours than the client expected and the developer did not warn about it.

To minimize communication gaps, we offer a few essential basic clauses of the “agreement” that can form effective interaction with the customer and remote developer.

  • Determine convenient communication channels with your Remote Worker (RW) (mail, instant messengers, Skype, Zoom, etc.) and the exact time of docking.
  • Form a system for recording the time spent on work, decide on a time-tracking model.
  • Make sure RW has access to the task management system (Jira, Trello, Google sheet, etc.) and follows the basic guidelines for using it.
  • Talk it over all the requirements for the development process: style/coding, test coverage, compatibility, performance, deployment, etc.
  • Determine a schedule for fixing and “delivery” of development results, both intermediate and final.
  • Make sure that RW has access to third-party services, add-ons, special equipment required for operation.
  • Consider the need to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) and, if necessary, inform the outsourcing company manager.

Discuss each point and make sure that both sides understand it. Please note that if the development environment has been set up by a contractor, you will have to follow company rules and policies.

We hope these simple guidelines will help you find a great professional! Good luck!

Should I give development to a remote team? Today everyone felt how difficult it is to put together an in-house development team. And not always an in-house team is a possible way out. There are plenty of situations when connecting a remote, ready for rapid start team is a necessity. Organizing the proper and completely safe development on your own side requires significant financial investments in technical equipment and in-depth study of the subject and when you are on deadlines for the implementation of new modules, this is ultimately not an option at all.

If we are talking about the development by a third-party contractor – outsource. How to verify his decency and competence? Can a contractor provide complete security? Is it possible to ensure the necessary level of security by working with a remote team? What must be spelled out in the contract? And what will it take to sleep soundly? 

Let’s sift all the factors through. And you will be sure about your actions. What we recommend doing to ensure safe development and how processes should be configured. We divided all basic security measures within the contractor’s company into organizational and purely technical.

 

Organizational security measures.

Staff recruitment. In the case of data or equipment theft, unauthorized information access or interference in the system there is the risk to the profit lost and financial losses. In addition, there is a chance to lose key employees and teamwork. Without them, it is difficult to survive the crisis, restore the image and positive dynamics of enterprise development and revenue growth. Thus, the person, developer, manager is the main factor. We advise you carefully to select team members, empower the security department to collect feedback from previous jobs and customer reviews.

NDA (non-disclosure agreement) – an agreement with the customer. This is not about a common NDA. In projects with high data security requirements, it is necessary to sign an agreement with each team worker who has production data access. This applies to non-disclosure, confidentiality, and liability of all involved parties.

Organization of workspace access. When it comes to ensuring the business and employees’ safety, an access control system is the most effective way to prevent unauthorized entry, restrict some employees’ entrance to prohibited areas and control the access of the whole team. We strongly recommend organizing automated access control to the territory and to the internal premises of the office for employees and visitors taking into account the assigned access rights. An important element of security is the global re-entry control, which allows you to stop the pass usage after it is transferred to unauthorized persons or as a result of an abduction.

Regulated access to personal computers. Reliable identity recognition is critical if you need to control the users’ access rights to certain information in order to prevent its damage or loss. In our practice, we have come to the use of computers with biometric authorization. Using biometric readers, we can see who and when used this or that computer, entered the server or other room. Face recognition authorization prevents illegal access to a working computer, even if access codes have been stolen. Another point concerning the main biometric characteristics that allow identification is the analysis of keyboard handwriting. The system collects information about each employee: analyzes the speed of keystrokes, pauses between keystrokes and hold time. It creates an individual portrait. If a third party uses an access code, for example, another employee or an attacker, the system will be able to respond to an unauthorized attempt to enter by notifying a security specialist or denying data access.

Monitoring and each user activity analysis within the network using special systems. First of all, this system determines the possible risks: which employee works with valuable information, what applications he uses, whom he communicates to. Thanks to the algorithm’s actions, it is possible to predict the potential risk of the company if the employee is unreliable and also to predict risks and find potential “holes” in the information security system. Вehavior that deviates from the individual norm is a signal about a violation of the security perimeter.

Video surveillance is an essential part of a modern security system. Companies want more and more to protect themselves from unwanted intrusions and attacks. Video surveillance is an information system that provides visual information that allows you to either restore the picture of an incident or get the necessary data about events, processes, and people. The job profile directs whom, how and under what circumstances it is possible to report personal data (custom credentials) for corporate networks connecting. Instruction is an integral aspect of high-quality and reliable development.

Passing specialized courses and owning certificates for software development. Teamwork experience in accordance with standards: SEC, FINRA, SOC 2, ISO / IEC and others. Choosing the contractor company, be sure to ask: what certificates does the team have to speed up the creation of safe development processes.

 

Technical security measures.

Distributed data access rights. An obligatory component of development security is access rights (permissions/restrictions) for working with databases. They are necessarily distributed by assigning predefined roles to users and groups. The impossibility of copying and making changes to the data is ensured. There is also developers’ restriction of access to the test environment and to version management.

Securing your local infrastructure. The local infrastructure allows you to quickly test and debug features. When developers produce new features, they can access production data through an intermediate unit using a secure VPN connection. We also recommend that you configure secure VPN access for external (trusted) services and servers. Staging boxing is not a universal solution in testing, as the process becomes too complicated. Sometimes you may need to deploy a local test environment. Keep in mind that to eliminate internal threats of data corruption, it is worth recording all actions. It is also advisable to limit the transfer of data outside the company network and storage on an external media.

Encryption. All stored on computers and laptops data must be so encrypted that even in the event of theft they cannot be used. It is necessary to provide data encryption protocols, encryption of the transfer protocol of integration buses, and so on.

Architectural solutions, architectural protection – personalization and posting information are separated. For example, in medicine, this may be the storage of personal information about the patient separately from the history of his illness.

Production Data should be denominated so that it is impossible to trace the data owners.

Code-based security. According to statistics, most sites and software are vulnerable due to errors in the code. The code can be checked with a third-party company, but this is an additional cost. The ideal option is the implementation of safe development tools on the contractor’s side. Requirements for code verification and safe development should be included in technical requirements. For example, it should include: conducting static code analysis at the development stage and code acceptance within the SDLC. Dynamic analysis (DAST-analysis, Dynamic Application Security Testing) of developed applications. Conducting an analysis to search for the so-called zero-day vulnerabilities, whose signatures and patterns are unknown. While transferring the finished software, should be prepared a report for the analysis of its security. On the developer’s side should be the analyzer adapted for embedding into the development environment, thereby providing the ability to check the code for vulnerabilities at each stage of the software life cycle. It’s enough for the client to have the same analyzer as the developer, but already in a lighter desktop version that just checks the final result (ready-made application).

What is worth noting? This is not a complete list of steps that can be taken to organize safe software development. We will be very happy to tell you more. If you have any questions remaining unresolved, please ask us and let’s share experiences and improve development security.

Yes, we live in a time when the only difference between services and products is that the client can perceive the quality of service. But exactly this difference creates his positive attitude and disposition towards the company and its products or services. This is a competitive advantage for client-oriented companies. The most accurate and comprehensive definition of customer service: “Service is what our clients think about it.”

Surprisingly, many companies do not see the connection between sales and quality of service. They consider their unspoken contract fulfilled when a client receives a service or product. They consider the service as an unpaid, unforeseen and, as a result, a completely unnecessary bonus. But the underlying nature of service has remained unchanged. People want courtesy, product knowledge, help and enthusiasm from company employees. Quality service is the concentration of all resources and all employees of a company on client satisfaction. It is all employees, and not just those who directly communicate with the client. The service includes everything: sales, delivery, order processing, HR, correspondence, invoicing, sales on credit, finance and accounting, advertising and public relations, data processing, etc.

No matter how far technology goes, clients will always appreciate the friendly, caring service provided by real people. They will smile when you call them by name, provide them with information, or provide assistance that they did not expect. And they will tell their friends about friendly, attentive service and employees who know what they are doing and who like to do it.

We are committed to becoming a customer-oriented company that understands that its only real asset is satisfied clients, each expects an individual approach.

Our client is a partner! A partner who is ready to consult with you and trust you, with whom we are in the same reality, have common interests. Our clients are also the result of our work! We are developing thanks to the non-standard tasks that we solve for our clients and together with our clients. Together we find the most profitable solution for optimizing processes and increasing profits. All this inevitably has a positive effect on long-term cooperation.

Inspired after a productive working week with our client in the Kharkiv office of Itera Research.

In today’s world – employment, speed, and communications – it is less and less possible to lure a client into an office. Nevertheless, meeting with an important client in your office is a very useful event that helps to establish a trusting relationship.

Exactly a year ago, on November 8, 2018, Paul from Australia came to our office together with his wife. He was very pleased with his visit, despite the long journey and the time difference. It helped us to better feel his pains and fears. Moving forward on difficult issues. 

A customer visit is a pleasant and vibrant event for most IT companies. We really would like to share how the visit to the remote team can help our clients. 

  • Yes, we are real! We always offer the client to come to visit us, look at the office and personally get to know the team. This works well to increase confidence, even if the client never gathers for a meeting – you do not hide, do not pretend to be invisible and are as open as possible.
  • We have a great professional team! Introduce a few people from the team to the client and explain that no one will be lost and that he can contact different people in case of an emergency.
  • You can easily evaluate the size of the company. There are a lot of examples when it is written on popular web resources that “we are US-based company”, but it turns out to be a company in the basement with two people.
  • Technical equipment. The office of the company is fully equipped with modern technics and software. There is a complete pool of devices for testing projects.
  • A personal meeting with the team allows you to convey the value of the project that the client feels. The team gets the right attitude and is motivated to achieve success and good progress in work.

We are always glad to see clients in our office or set up an in-person meeting whatever it could be. A motivated team that clearly understands the client’s values is the key to the project’s success and more contribution to the final result.

Ukraine – the unannounced Mecca of outsourcing. Moreover, in areas requiring high qualifications: software development, support of IT projects, etc. The outsourcing market is growing at 20% at an annual rate, and this growth is expected to only increase.

Unique offer from Ukrainian outsourcers

Why, despite the serious competition and high activity of Asian companies, a good share of this pie goes to the specialists from Ukraine?

The main reasons:

  • excellent technical education of  IT specialists
  • the ability to make independent interim decisions
  • willingness to solve complex problems
  • minor cultural differences between our specialists and foreign customers.

The puzzles of the Ukrainian cultural code, are very close to Western and Central Europe and even to North Americans. Ukrainians are convenient performers for customers from different parts of Europe precisely they embody the golden mean of Europeans themselves.

The arithmetic mean of cultural Europe

Let’s take distant from each other, as it seems, Swiss and Italians (mentally, not geographically). Different temperaments, different ideas about punctuality, different attitudes to the state power, to the law, different religious degrees, etc. All these differences fall into the range of acceptablу for the average Ukrainian developer fluctuations.

  • We are happy to express openly our emotions. However, we know very well how to hide them on occasion.
  • We know how to be accurate, like a Swiss watch. However, we can talk about reasonable flexibility over time (by the way, this flexibility allows us to work towards reducing the deadline if the project deadlines were cut unexpectedly).
  • With all our hearts we want to trust the state, authorities, and superiors. However, watching the next pirouettes of the “superior”, we are ready to reduce their value in our lives.

Well and further on the list. All this does not say anything about our unprincipled – it is natural flexibility, which allowed us to survive in different conditions for centuries. That is why we can quite organically be both introverts and extroverts, intellectuals and “simple-minded”, etc.

Let us add the common ground for all Europeans: Christianity as a fundamental religion, emerging from Roman law and inherited from the ancient Greeks culture and statehood.

  • Finally, as for most Europeans, English is not native to us. Which to some extent facilitates communication, limiting it to accessible vocabulary.

Yes but no, but yes

Does this make the Ukrainian an ideal outsourcer for a European client? Here we again recall the cultural proximity of our compatriot and client. After all, it is common for us to look (unlike the valiant dumping) not at the collective image, but the individual qualities of the performer. A specific Ukrainian performer may disappear from the radar, ignore deadlines and point-blank not understand the terms of reference. But!

If we talk about the average temperature in a hospital, Ukrainians are a good choice with their desire to plunge deeply into the task, a good profile education, understandable English and similar personal values ​​(even a sense of humor), we think.

The talents of Ukrainian software developers are well-known worldwide. Major companies such as Samsung Electronics, NetCracker, Wargaming, Magento, Siemens and SysIQ outsource software development to companies based in Ukraine, open offices in Ukraine and even set up their R&D centers there. Ukrainian developers are professional, responsive, innovative and dedicated. But this article will shed some light on another side of Ukrainians that you are unlikely to know or ever hear about.

 Ukrainians will not always agree with you.

Yes, we are stubborn. When we see that a feature you want to add to the scope could damage the project, we will not say, “Ok, you’re the boss.” We will argue and do our best to explain and prove our reasons.

 We are such a “pain in the ass.”

We ask plenty of questions before the project starts. We specify all the use cases and user flows. It may appear that we are not professional, but in fact we are just detail oriented.

 Ukrainians can refuse you.

We are realists and quite consciously so. If you’re looking to create EBay or Facebook in a week from scratch, we will refuse you. We are not afraid of challenges, but likewise we are not wizards and we will give you a sober assessment of the situation.

 We can be indelicate and ask uncomfortable questions.

We will ask you about your business model and planned revenue streams. This particular information helps us to see the big picture to suggest ideas for new applications that can improve operations. We believe developers with a business focus are more efficient and can be more useful.

 Ukrainians are meticulous.

Instead of spending hours blindly making changes, Ukrainian programmers prefer to carefully investigate the code and research possible issues until an answer is found.

 

Sincerely,

Itera Research team