7 Ways To Reduce Your Software Development Costs8 min read
When starting your software development process, there are several factors that you need to take into consideration. And software development cost is one of the critical factors that may leave you with many wonders. This article will help you overview software development costs and provide you with some tips to reduce them for a better strategy.
How much does software development cost?
We all know that there is no exact answer to this question. It depends on several factors that we will mention in more detail in the next part of this article. There are some essential variables such as project requirements, application features, your project’s size and complexity, and many others.
The estimate of software is often challenging but let us focus on project complexity for a moment to give you a general sense of the mentioned amount. In terms of their complexity, such initiatives can be categorized into three categories:
- Basic applications – they provide simple features and can be built quite quickly. This application takes 500-700 hours to develop and costs anything from $20,000 to $80,000. A simple mobile application with a definite and limited set of features is an example.
- Medium complex application – it takes about 700-1200 hours for applications such as these to be made, because their features are more complicated. For example, a customized server application or a business app that offers mobile and web functions. In this case, estimated software costs will be between $80,000 and $150,000.
- Complex applications – these applications often take more than 1200 hours to complete and often require complex architecture and multiple integrations to be developed or have a high level of security. For instance, data-driven applications, enterprise software with complex business logic, social media applications or advanced reporting applications.
Factors affecting software development costs
As mentioned above, many factors will determine the final costs of your software development. It would be best to keep in mind the following factors when you start generating ideas for your app.
1. Hiring option
When it comes to finding the best software developer, modern IT has plenty of options. Freelance developers, in-house teams and outsourcing engineers are the most popular among them.
- Freelance developers: This is the least expensive option, but it has numerous disadvantages. Hiring freelance developers does not guarantee that they will deliver your solution on time or that the final product will be of high quality. If you choose this option, you will be the one in charge of overseeing the development process, which may be difficult if you need to focus on your business or have no experience in Project Management. Finally, there is no guarantee with freelance developers, so you may end up with buggy software and have to spend even more money to fix it.
- In-house teams: Building an internal software team is a good choice when you plan and have the resources to develop a long-term project. The advantage of having an in-house team is that you have complete control over its work and the quality delivered at all stages of development. Hiring full-time developers, on the other hand, is time-consuming and costly. You'll need to invest not only in their salaries (which, let's face it, skilled software engineers expect to be paid well) but also in overhead costs such as software licenses, hardware, taxes, holiday and sick leave, and more. The most expensive option is to hire an in-house team.
- Outsourcing engineers: Companies that choose to cooperate with specialized software development agencies benefit from many advantages. They gain access to experienced and qualified engineers who know how to work effectively and implement processes to ensure successful and productive development. They have domain knowledge and know-how to assist you in developing the best possible solution. At the same time, they understand the intricacies of software development and can provide you with valuable advice on technology selection, product development, and beyond. This option offers comparable quality guarantees to the in-house team without requiring you to incur the costs of hiring full-time staff.
When being an outsourcing partner with Groove Technology, we offer flexible delivery models because we understand that every customer has different business models and demands.
2. The level of seniority your project requires
The cost of hiring software developers can vary depending on their level of knowledge and expertise. Developers are classified as junior, mid-level, or senior based on their level of seniority.
- Junior developers are still in the early stages of their careers and require assistance from more experienced colleagues. They learn a lot by working with skilled developers, but they can only contribute simple tasks.
- Mid-level developers have a few years of experience and can work on a project independently. They understand how to deal with complicated technical issues.
- Senior developers can bring the best skills and expertise to your project. They understand how to write bug-free code, design the best architecture for your solution, and strike a balance between your project's technical and business goals. Furthermore, they can explain the benefits and drawbacks of various technologies, frameworks, and solutions in a high-level manner to help you understand their rationale behind building your application.
The more complicated functions your projects require, the more qualified developers you will need to hire. That also means that the software development hourly rates will rise along with the engineer's level.
3. Hiring location
The cost of hiring engineers for software development can vary significantly between different places in the world. As a result, the location where you hire software developers will affect your project's final price.
For example, US, UK and Australian development services are usually very expensive. That is why companies that want to balance cost and quality look to Central and Eastern European countries, offering qualified local rates services.
7 ways to reduce software development costs
1. Outsource software development
Professional software development comes at a high initial cost, but you'll save money on subsequent projects. You avoid paying in-house salaries, taxes, bonuses and benefits, workspace, software and hardware, and a slew of other overhead expenditures because you're not hiring developers.
Outsourcing software development allows you to take advantage of the expertise of teams all over the world. Working with a company based in another country or continent may appear complicated at first. Still, seasoned suppliers have systems in place that expedite communication and allow for productive remote collaboration.
2. Identify and document project requirements
The best way to keep your project on budget is to avoid ambiguity in the description of your project, even at the level of the software estimate. Create a document with your project requirements that you will use every time you approach software developers for a quote.
You don't have to figure everything outright from the beginning. But write down the main things and seek clarity while doing that.
If your descriptions are ambiguous, you may not interpret the requirements and will face difficulties such as incorrect functionality, poor design and low value for money. The team will be on the right track with an extensive and well-defined specification of the project and reduce software development's overall cost.
3. Prioritize features
It is essential to keep in mind your realistic expectations right from the start and prioritize the various application features, even if compromising your overall vision. Know that it may not be possible to deliver a total software solution immediately. Even if you think your goal is too big to achieve, ensure your app's functionalities will provide tangible business value as soon as possible, and then begin building an accurate software project estimation.
Sometimes you must remove features that are considered nice-to-have and place them on your to-do list. Returning to them is only required when the must-haves are done, implemented, and making a profit. The MVP methodology is the approach used by companies to develop successful products today.
4. Plan with the future in advance
Many businesses overlook the fact that the costs of developing software extend beyond the development and release phases. A completed application still incurs costs, whether for maintenance or future growth.
The application you're working on today will look very different in the future. A customer may request changes or new features from you. Your target market may evolve in an entirely new direction, requiring you to redesign your product.
Companies should consider future changes when developing custom software. The development team should have a general idea of the types of changes expected in the future. In this way, developers create the app to simplify the implementation of changes and lower future software development costs.
5. Involve a QA team from the beginning
It is worth testing at an early stage in the life cycle of software development. That is because the requirements or design phase can accumulate bugs or errors. They will spread throughout the whole project unless you catch them at this point.
To identify problems before the development phase, have a QA team be involved in your project from the start. In the middle of your project, you will avoid building low-quality software and save money on the costs of redesigning. In later phases, bugs also need a rework, which can be very expensive.
6. Follow the agile methodologies
The agile approach to software development keeps the process lean and allows stakeholders to collaborate closely at all stages of software development. An agile methodology is specifically a wise option for entirely new products to the market and continuously innovating in the future. Each iteration asserts the collection of feedback from clients or end-users. The development team then improves the outcome. As a result, all changes are made during the process, and the risk of rework is practically eliminated.
7. Hire a proactive and experienced team
Depending on different projects, it is crucial that you involve the right people. You need a team that will challenge and advise you throughout the process. Smart technical decisions during the planning stage can sometimes significantly reduce costs while providing the same business value. An experienced team asking the right questions proactively to meet the core requirements will take your project to the next level with the most effective costs.
Software development can be costly, and many factors will determine the final expenses of your software. Nevertheless, you can minimize your software development costs by following our above tips and team up with a professional software development company is one of the best ways. They will provide you with skills, talents and valuable advice related to technology options and how to best capitalize on a project.
If you are looking for an experienced software development team, do not hesitate to contact Groove Technology via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.