How to choose an IT company for your project?

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You may be wondering when you really need IT support? It is true that when problems have an impact on your core business can be quite a late time to make a decision. In addition, it may be more expensive.

Is the best to take care of the infractructure service from the very beginning and have a dedicated company that always will be able to help you and knows your system very well. However, perhaps before there wasn’t such a need. It all depends on what kind of business you are running and how much your business operates on the Internet. Do not let your business “jump from the frying pan into the fire;” it is worthwhile performing audits and test pages, and put these into a long-term business plan. Another question is whether you need an external company to meet your requirements or whether it might be more profitable to create our own IT? Or… Maybe you want to start something completely new?

Basic questions to yourself

If you are considering hiring an IT company, you should first answer the following questions:

  • Do you have to choose the appropriate technology for a new project?
  • Are you scared about the stability of your current business, which after all is based on the web channel?
  • Will your company grow in sales or customer volume in the next one to three years?
  • Does your website started to work slowly and can affect comfort?
  • Are you planning to further expand your platform with new functionality?
  • What is your budget?
  • What specific specialist you need?
  • What are your marketing needs?

Answers to all these questions allow you to easy find the right company and prepare you to future conversation.

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Where you should be looking for?

With IT services, much is the same as with any other specialist service. The most important demands are references and a portfolio. At the beginning, we ask the friends who have used this type of service. However, there would be nothing surprising if you just do not know anyone like that. Then we reach for help from Uncle Google. It is worth trying to find the right company looking for the key words of interest to us. Another option is placing ads on specially designed portals for this goal. However, you must be aware that many people can present you with different offers and instill confidence. These offers may come from companies or even individual freelancers.

What you should keep your eyes on?

Solid track record

If a company writes of itself as a skilled company, it is important that those words come with the relevant recommendations. Therefore, it is worthwhile to check what and whose company has a testimonial on their website. Secondly, there is no better evidence of the skill of the company as the case studies. Completed projects should be professionally described and most of all the relevant information about how to communicate with the client, used technologies and effects. Pay your attention to the comments of the customer. It is a proof of the truth of the described case study.

Website

A good Website should be primarily user friendly and immediately steer the customer in the right direction. If you want to find the offer – you can quickly find the offer. If you want to find any information – you can quickly find it or easily communicate with the firm. Moreover, the website should exhibit unique values of the firm and describe its characteristics, so that you know what the company can offer beyond the standard.

Contract and documentation

A good and trustworthy IT company can be recognized by a well-structured contract, as well as systematic and complete documentation. Of course, when pre-selecting companies that want to work for you, you might not be able to assess exactly how this process takes place. There are two outputs. The first – during the meeting to inquire about the shape of the firm’s contract and kept records, and secondly, to contact former customers of the company and ask about the actual course of this part of the project.

What should the contract be to protect your best interests:

  • Intelectual Property transfer,
  • Reasonable payment system: payments can be spread out in stages
  • Endorsement of confidentiality described the procedure for acceptance appendix
  • Work schedule penalties for the violations of the terms and confidentiality do not comply with the order, or time delays
  • Warranty for what period of time the contractor warrants that it has done
  • Determination of the court, which is better in case of dispute settlement
  • Additional costs that may come
  • How communication takes place – just by mail or they’re using some professional tools like Basecamp or Redmine

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What documentation will you need?

Technical documentation – describing all the technical parameters of the final product.

Documentation may include:

  • Requirements – Statements that identify attributes, capabilities, characteristics, or qualities of a system. This is the foundation for what shall be or has been implemented.
  • Technical – Documentation of code, algorithms, interfaces, and APIs.
  • Architecture/Design – Overview of software. Includes relations to an environment and construction principles to be used in design of software components.
  • End user – system administrators and support staff.
  • Marketing – How to market the product and analysis of the market demand.

Sometimes you might meet with the User Guide. It is made with a view to end users – it is a guide to the capabilities of the software.

Image and Reputation

Find out whether a company has a blog or handles Social Media channels. Very often, companies like to brag about their knowledge by publishing articles on well-known, industry portals, or on their own blogs (as is the case at the moment 😉 ). This allows you to determine whether the company actually knows what is doing, tracks trends and is considered to be an expert in its field.

Work schedule

During the initial meeting, ask about the firm’s potential course of work. What system or methodology do they follow and how you can check the progress of project. Always ask about the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed solution and why they think it will be most effective for your problem. Also ask about the stages of the project and the duration of each of them. This makes it easy to be able to compare the offers of different companies. You should also find out what tools you will use during the project in, whether it is also a convenient way for you.

Technological expert

It is important that you draw attention to what technology potential company is specializing. It is known that everyone will convince you to their own. Therefore, it is worth doing adequate research on the Internet regarding the technologies used in different kinds of projects. I refer you also http://whoisusing.it/, where you check in which technologies are written in the most important portals on the Internet.

Great customer service

Another important thing, if not the most important, are people and how they treat you. The company should behave professionally and treat each client individually. In particular, it is important to ensure effective communication during the long-term cooperation. If the IT company understands the needs of its customer and respects its client – it usually increases satisfaction and results achieved during the project.

Do you want to find out how Octivi works? Come to our website!

Photo by Kyle Pearce

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Angelika is a Startup's geek who takes care of the Octivi's brand and helps with developing next awesome ideas.