It’s not easy being a startup. Even if you have all the resources needed to launch a successful business, there’s no guarantee it will work out. In fact, seven out of ten startups do not succeed. The Statistic Brain Research Institute reports that the failure rate of all U.S. companies after the first five years of operation is over 50 percent, and this exceeds 70 percent after ten years. These are some harsh statistics, and you can either cry about it, or you can look for the issues that could destroy your startup and try to fix them. Chances are, there are serious tech problems your company has yet to handle. We’ve compiled a list of ten most common tech problems startups face. Here are the first five.
Problem 1: Startup doesn’t have an in-house CTO
A tech startup without a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) is like a restaurant without a chef. At the same time, some startups do not need a full-time CTO, and for others, hiring a CTO is not financially feasible. In that case, outsourcing the functions of a CTO is the most logical and affordable alternative. An outsourced CTO can provide a new, fresh and professional look at your company’s IT strategy. CTOs are responsible for the design and implementation of tech solutions, team scaling and interviewing, controlling vendor and tech-related expenses and working with your existing team or an extended one. Outsourced CTOs can work on-site from time to time or visit your company regularly. But even if they aren’t in the office every day, be sure that they have your business’s best interests at heart. And let’s not forget that having a CTO on the team increases your chances of being funded.
An outsourced CTO offers high-quality, professional services and fast results. But the best part about outsourcing a CTO is that they can be involved either full or part time, or they can help you out with the specific needs for a particular case.
Problem 2: Startup is not sure about the current solution
Your startup has come up with a nice tech solution. Great! But are you sure it covers the necessary business needs and meets the technical requirements? Is it secure enough? Is it easily maintainable? Maybe the solution needs redesigning, or maybe it needs to be torn down completely and built again from scratch. Before the doubt eats you alive, let’s remember that we are lucky to live in the age of outsourcing. To ensure your solution is good enough, all you need to do is outsource its technical assessment. An IT consultant can evaluate the current version maintainability, ongoing code quality and the learning curve for newcomers. And if you need to rewrite the solution from the ground up after the technical assessment, you’ll know the approximate cost of the procedure.
Problem 3: Startup doesn’t know which tech stack to choose for its solution
If you are stuck and have no idea which technology to choose for your startup’s future solution, it’s a good idea to consult experts from an outsourcing professional. An outsourced IT consultant will analyse all your requirements and offer the best tech stack for the new product.
If you want to decide on the tech stack yourself, consider which technologies your current IT team is comfortable with. Eventually, your startup will grow, and you’ll need to hire more developers—ideally ones familiar with the tech stack you use. Sure, no solution is 100% perfect, but by prioritising the most important use cases and choosing the solution that fits them best, you should be able to find a reasonable fit.
Problem 4: Bad quality of solutions delivered by the current outsourcing vendor
What do you do if your relationship with an existing vendor has become tense after concerns regarding the quality of their services? We understand your frustration, but don’t jump to false conclusions: Not all outsourcing companies are bad. You just need to find the right partner to do business with. This means a vendor who is competent in providing the services you need; is flexible and scalable enough for your business; can prove their experience with certifications, awards or reputable references; and, most importantly, is someone you feel comfortable communicating and working with.
Problem 5: The previous vendor failed the delivery
There are many ways a development team can fail the final product delivery. It is either not finished on time, the result is far from what you've negotiated about, the functionality is insufficient or the product contains critical bugs. There are even situations when a vendor terminates the contract prematurely and refuses to finish what they've started. All these unfortunate events can require editing or rewriting the final product completely. And you can either start frantically recruiting a team of developers on your own, or you can carefully look for a new outsourcing provider—someone who will analyse the existing code and suggest ways to move forward, calculate the difference between altering the existing solution and writing a new one and help you with maintenance, adding new features and recruiting new developers.
Any startup can fail, and tech issues are often to blame. Some startups lack an in-house CTO to guide their development. Others aren’t sure about the current solution at all. Which tech stack to choose for the next product? What do you do when the quality of solutions delivered by the ongoing outsourcing partner leaves much to be desired? What if the previous vendor failed the delivery altogether? These are just some of the most common tech problems startups face (stay tuned for more in part two), and while outsourcing can’t solve every problem a startup has, it is the solution to many of them. Mistakes happen, but don’t be afraid to fix them with an outsourcing vendor that has enough experience to put you on the right track. Contact ElifTech today, and see how we can help your startup flourish.
Check out the second part of startups' tech problems: continuous integration and continuous delivery, load testing, quick team enhancement, what to do if the delivered solution is full of bugs and how to turn a prototype into production-ready software.