So you're interested in or considering offshore app development. Great! Offshoring an app project can save your team valuable time and money on a project, and can often lead to superior results than could be produced in-house. You may already have a hunch that's true, or you've heard of other businesses profiting from the decision.
But what's next? Unless you've got contacts and a detailed plan, it can be hard to know what to look for or expect. Mobile app development is a complex and nuanced process that can make or break a business. Whether you're running a small business or a multinational company, you need to know your app will be done right — and, hopefully, without breaking the bank.
The combination of variables involved leads to plenty of questions. If you've decided to save money and look to offshore app developers, how do you choose? Which country should you choose one in? What should you expect of your developer's management? How can you trust their talent and execution? Certainly, you'll be able to come up with plenty of questions of your own.
But when choosing an offshore app developer, there is only one fundamental question: How do you choose a company you can trust to do the job well at a reasonable price?
Fear not: We're here to help. This article should answer some of the above questions. Follow along as we explore the realm of offshore app development so you can make the best decision for you. But first — why go offshore to begin with?
Why Choose Offshore App Development?
Simply put, there is one key advantage of choosing an offshore app developer: It saves money. The main reason offshore developers exist is to provide quality service at a lower cost than those found in western countries like the UK or the US. It's no secret that wages are among the highest in the world in western countries, so hiring a company outside that cultural zone can relieve a significant financial burden from your company.
The savings can be up to 70% in many cases. Thousands or tens of thousands of pounds saved can mean the difference between failure and success for a small business, or the difference between a profitable or unprofitable year for a larger one.
Consider: The average wage of an app developer in the UK is around £52,600 per year. If you hire an app development company in the UK, their costs will have to reflect the cost of their labor — which represents the vast majority of their expenses.
Compare that to Vietnam, a country burgeoning with young and talented app developers, which we'll describe in greater detail later. A talented, experienced app developer in Vietnam can earn anywhere between £9,000-18,000 per year — roughly one-sixth to one-third as much as a developer in the UK.
Those salary differentials lead to costs passed directly to you while you get your app made all the same. If you're the business owner, you'll be able to celebrate thousands of pounds in savings. If you're in charge of the decision, you'll earn kudos from management for saving the company significant money.
And before you begin to have any moral qualms about paying a Vietnamese developer much less than you'd pay a British developer, consider the difference in cost of living. A salary of £9,000 in Vietnam is considered very good, and would allow someone to comfortably support a family while saving money as well. A salary of £18,000 is roughly ten times the national GDP per capita — meaning the developer would be quite comfortable indeed. You save money while the developer on the other end enjoys a high standard of living. Everyone wins, really.
A World Awash in Talent
Vietnam is not alone, of course. The tech revolution is not confined to any one part of the world. Talented software engineers can be found in every corner of the globe, especially in younger generations. There are essentially two things necessary to generate a talented pool of app developers:
- A young and vibrant population
- Strong internet infrastructure and widespread internet access
That's about it. Leave young people to their own devices, and a lot of them will turn to technology for their work. Part of this is people responding to market forces, as they always do; another part is simply because many people find technology fascinating.
The mind-boggling progression and availability of technology is something that would have stunned any social scientist from just a few decades ago. What may not have stunned them, however, is how quickly people have adapted to it. One of youth's key features is its hardwired ability to adapt to change, and in this case it can be seen in the explosion of software talent around the world.
Offshoring in Vietnam: An Ideal Choice
As an app and website development company, Xenia Tech is keenly aware of the aforementioned talent and set out to find the country that suited us best. We chose Vietnam and are very confident in our decision for many reasons.
If there's any poster child for development, it's Vietnam. Three decades ago, it was one of the poorest countries in the world, with many rural areas still lacking electricity. Two decades ago the internet was rare even in major cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
But the last twenty years have witnessed some of the most explosive economic development anywhere in history, and Vietnam's modernity shocks many first-time visitors. Near-universal access to internet service providers in urban areas, constant construction, and a population constantly on the go contribute to the ever-increasing buzz in the country.
Vietnam's information and communications (ICT) sector boasted an astounding 26.1% annual growth between 2015 and 2019, and that trend only looks set to accelerate. The country is aiming to become a tech powerhouse, and is well on its way. The digital sector has recently climbed to 4% of GDP, and the internet economy — a more specific component of the ICT — is zooming ahead at a whopping 40% per year.
Because of this focus on tech, there's a large and growing pool of eager talent — especially on our development team. And we just love working with them.
A Bit About Vietnamese Tech Workers
Working cross-culturally can certainly present some challenges, so we find it helpful to explain a bit about just what makes Vietnamese developers tick. A recent study shed some light on workers in the industry, and backs up what we had already happily witnessed in our offshore development team.
Vietnamese software developers love what they do. A full 84% of IT workers in Vietnam surveyed chose the field because they love working with computers. So, you won't be working with some ho-hum drone simply in it for the money — and passion frequently leads to more focus and better results.
Similarly, around half of respondents indicated the most important thing to them was creating an interesting product. This again represents the passion you can expect from Vietnamese developers. At the same time, around one in five said the most important thing to them was making sure they were learning and developing — hardly an undesirable trait.
And, while some respondents indicated they preferred to work with product companies than offshore companies, a majority said they preferred working with foreign companies. Why, you ask? Many want to gain experience working with foreigners and expand their horizons — for many, it's considered prestigious.
What About Management, Though?
No matter how talented both an outsourcing company and their client are at communicating, language and cultural barriers can always present, well...barriers. For this reason, we find it extraordinarily valuable to have management firmly rooted in both worlds. To wit, our intrepid CEO Will Macfarlane cut his teeth in the London tech startup scene but is now comfortably ensconced in Vietnam.
Managers of an offshore team need to understand and anticipate their clients needs while simultaneously navigating two different work cultures. Ours are certainly capable of doing that. For example, our Vietnamese project managers who frequently work with offshore clients have excellent English language ability since it's simply a prerequisite of the job.
Will Time Differences Be an Issue?
Time differences of course exist between countries. Ideally, everyone would be working on the same schedule so communication could always happen in real time. Unfortunately — or perhaps fortunately, really — the world is round so it’s impossible to have everywhere be in the same time zone.
If you’re outsourcing west to east the time difference problem can be mitigated and you can work it into your business practices to be a bonus.
Consider this: the UK is seven hours behind Vietnam. Most of your developer’s work will be done while you're sleeping — meaning you'll one day be able to wake up to completed tasks or sprints, and if you have an early meeting to show off said progress, what could be better?
Let Xenia Tech Make You Look Good
So you're interested in building a complex app? No worries. A simple app? Sure. A full-scale website? We've got you. The talent is here. Our management is savvy. We're one of the best up and coming mobile app developers out there. Our previous clients have seen big boosts to their business. We're proud of that.
If you're looking to make an app, look no further. Contact us today to schedule a call or request a quote and we'll go the extra mile to get your job done right — because that's what matters the most.