When your are thinking outsourcing, how do you weigh the pros and cons? The benefits of outsourcing are clear - but equally important before making your decision is selecting the company that will manage your outsourcing needs.

So before you choose a company to outsource to or decide against it, here are a few things to check:

CAPABILITY

"Can they do it well?"

At Nathan Ark, we have a strongly experienced team of software engineers with strong academic credentials and leading industry certifications. We pride ourselves on the technology talent and leadership of our people. We regularly seek approval from clients for each member on the team upon request, and profiles of all team members are made available to clients during team staffing.

Finally, unlike several offshore development businesses that are actually one-man shops or loose collaborations of individual programmers, Nathan Ark is a reputed company in the area of global development and delivery with the resources clients need like development teams, tools, technologies, previous project experience, and best practices developed through years of consulting engagements.

All the above - project experience, academic credentials, industry certifications, portfolio of projects, client testimonials, and the resource base of the company - attest to Nathan ArkÂ's capabilities.

These quality, cost, and speed advantages often make outsourcing the natural choice for clients across the world.

CREDIBILITY

"Can we trust they will do what they say?"

At Nathan Ark, we have delivered engagement after engagement building up our reputation in the area of global development and delivery - a fact amply testified to by our clients. And to prove it, our clients regularly provide references for our work to our new clients.

COORDINATION

"How do we do this overseas?"

At Nathan Ark, we make this easy. We have been doing outsourced work for scores of clients each year and, through these experiences, we have developed processes that represent best practices in coordinating consulting and development overseas. Review our Global Delivery Model (GDM) for the framework we use on distributed projects for coordination with our clients.

We maintain round-the-clock coordination 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with our clients to overcome the time differences. In fact, time differences often work as an advantage for coordination. The time difference allows our teams here to work around the clock even when our clients are asleep!

Our ability to coordinate projects effectively draws primarily from our strengths in project management enabled primarily through our online client extranet Global Customer Service Center (GCSC). By monitoring progress on projects daily, reporting regularly, conducting regular reviews, and following protocols for status reporting on all aspects of projects, we coordinate very large projects effectively.

Furhtermore, through the GCSC, clients can review work progress at all times through their client account access. All a client needs in a web browser, and the username and password to access our client extranet. The client extranet has over 15 project areas that monitor and report on all aspects of the project making effective coordination easier.

All of the above - our processes for coordination, our round-the-clock teams, strengths in project management, and the online GCSC - make effective coordination easier during the course of projects.

COMMUNICATION

"How will we communicate?"

We believe there is no such thing as over-communication. But, in addition to quantity, the quality of communication on an engagement is also critically important. While our client extranet serves as the primary repository for all project materials, client communications, and project documents, it also serves as the most effective means to communicate with all the facts and information necessary. Clients have access not only to the latest project materials but also all the historical documents, like previous builds and versions, during the course of the project.

Also, quick and economical communication through e-mail, phone, conferencing, wireless, fax, IM, courier, ftp, web interfaces, and onsite teams means everyone is kept well informed at all times. We have worked with clients all across the world from Canada to Australia and communication has never been a problem. In fact our clients rate our responsiveness as the best they have ever seen.

All of the above - our client extranet, a plethora of tools for quick and economical communication, and our commitment to responsiveness - make certain that communication between everyone on the team works well.

COST

"How much will it cost?"

The cost benefits are very significant for our clients when working within our global development and delivery model. Labor and infrastructure costs are typically lower in some countries, like India, that at other locations in the world. We use these favorable conditions to locate our development teams in these countries so we can offer the lower costs of development to our clients.

Outsourced development projects are regularly given to international companies for two primary reasons first, local software developers are either not available to meet a client's particular needs, and second, even if they are, the cost of hiring local developers is often far higher than that available in other locations. The total cost of ownership for our clients is often 40 to 60% less than comparative costs with providers local to the client.

We offer clients a lot of choice with billing methods and payment schedules. Our service agreements in the offshore development format are typically one of fixed fee contracts, fixed man-month contracts, and actual man-month contracts. Payments are typically made by check and wire transfer.

All of the above - favorable economic conditions, lower development costs, billing methods, and payment schedules - combine to create very strong cost advantages for our clients. More importantly, Nathan Ark Software can provide you with an estimate for your project that will confirm the cost advantages for you.