Before starting to work with an external development team, many clients have numerous questions: How to verify the competencies of the team? How can I be sure that the programmers have enough knowledge and experience in the specific area and technology? Can someone evaluate the team before I invest in working with them?
At SoftwareMill, we have been aware that the development of bespoke software solutions requires both programming and business competencies – preferably confirmed by reliable sources.
The verification of reliability is crucial for a stress-free cooperation – not only for the client, who can check whether the company meets the requirements, but also for the software house, to which proven competencies mean clear and transparent terms of cooperation.
So, what is worth checking before beginning to work together? Here are 5 factors to consider:
1. Clients’ recommendations (past and present)
This is the most common solution, although not the fastest, since it usually requires finishing a project (or at least a part of it). We always ask our clients for an honest opinion and feedback regarding our work, both during and after the project.
Once the project has been finished, we ask for a testimonial with the client’s name and contact information, which is sometimes difficult because of confidentiality agreements. In those cases, if possible, we ask for an anonymous review and, optionally, the PM’s contact information on request.
Every time we ask for an evaluation of the quality of our service, the communication with the team, and the benefits the client has gained. Our testimonials and portfolio are available on our website.
Information about the quality of the cooperation can also be found on Clutch – an external company that confirms the authenticity of recommendations.
2. Opinions by independent experts
We confidently take responsibility and carry out end-to-end projects, where transparent relations and quality cooperation are inscribed into the company values.
This is why we did not hesitate to join the due diligence program by Digital Knights – a company that stands guard over the best practices in technological projects carried out by remote teams.
Not all companies are made up exclusively of experienced senior developers who at the same time possess excellent technological knowledge, and also are able to advise clients on business solutions.
Only 7% of all tech teams meet the benchmarks to join Digital Knights network, get their recommendation and invitation to cooperate. SoftwareMill is among the top 5% of all teams screened by Digital Knights experts.
The due diligence process includes checking: technical expertise, code and documentation, customer satisfaction, external communication, company culture, and other key elements. We are very proud of this achievement.
You can check the final report for more details.
3. Trial period
During the trial period, each client can see how the cooperation goes, check the quality of communication and decide whether the code and functionalities are as agreed and of a high quality. After this time, clients can decide to continue the cooperation in its current form, make changes to the way the project is being handled or choose to resign without paying (in this case not receiving the results of the work). We have prepared some tips for you on how to start working with us.
4. Sharing knowledge at conferences
Knowledge and experience are the most valuable things you can share in the business world. This is why we put strong emphasis on constantly broadening our knowledge and sharing it at international conferences.
The results? So far, we have 44 conferences planned this year, including 28 that had or will have someone from SoftwareMill as a speaker. We have shared our knowledge in Japan, the US, Canada, the UK, Austria, Denmark, Germany and South Africa, as well as at international events in Poland. A full list, including future events and links to recordings of presentations, is available on our page
5. Blog posts
We share our knowledge not only during public speaking, but also through blog posts. We show how a given technology works in practice, discuss individual solutions, implementations and compare them with alternatives existing in the market.
The content is intended for two groups of readers: business people, who get the opportunity to find out more about our domain and see how technology translates to an advantage in business, and the community of programmers, who can find solutions to cases they are or would like to be working on.
The reliability of SoftwareMill is built on our trust in competencies, experience and knowledge, which we invest into the projects we prepare for our clients. Building a trustworthy team that not only supplements, but even boosts the skills of each individual member, is a major challenge. Not all companies have the time and resources to build a competent in-house team – we can be their external IT department. Our competencies are backed by our clients, the audience of our talks, the readers of our blog and the independent experts at Clutch and Digital Knights.