The Goldilocks Syndrome: Finding Balance in Software Development

“Goldilocks and the Three Bears” has an important message about software development in today’s landscape.

If you look at the story, you see that there are ultimately three options when it comes to porridge for Goldilocks. One is too hot. One is too cold. And one is just right.

It’s the same when companies make decisions about software development. One is too hot (expensive). One is too cold (poor quality). And one is just right.

When analyzing companies, we continually see the same three problems when it comes to software development—money, quality and talent. There is limited budget which forces CIOs to look for low cost development options and/or there are challenges with finding adequate development talent to handle the work. That conundrum leads us to what we’ll call the Goldilocks Syndrome.

Finding success in the Goldilocks Syndrome requires the right balance.

In-house resources

Building an in-house software development team is a response to quality concerns. Logic dictates that by building internal resources, you will receive better quality.

That may be true, but there are a myriad of challenges when it comes to in-house software development.

  1. It’s expensive
  2. Tough to scale
  3. Hard to find talent

Even if you find good talent, the industry is seeing a high turnover rate. Searching for talent takes time and cuts into the advantages you see from in-house development. There is a place for in-house software development but like Goldilocks’s porridge, it’s too hot.

Offshore resources

Offshore software development is the direct result of one concern—cost. There is an unmistakable allure to offshore. To keep with the children’s story metaphor, it’s like the witch luring Hansel and Gretel to her candy house. It’s a temptation too great to resist. But at some point, you get burned and you see the cost savings for what they truly are.

So the question is—are the upfront cost savings worth it? Are you willing to sacrifice quality and speed?

As anyone who has spent much time managing software development projects will know—if you don’t have speed and quality cost savings don’t mean anything because you end up with expensive rework and delayed timelines. Soon the perceived cost savings evaporate.

In the world of Goldilocks, it’s just too cold.


Onshore outsourcing is known to be less expensive than in-house development but more expensive than offshore alternatives. But initial costs don’t tell the full story.

When you look at the full picture, onshore outsourcing can be competitive on all fronts. Innovative outsourcing models help companies find balance and meet their needs. By finding tech talent in Middle America, where there is a lower cost of living, we can mitigate costs while maintaining the high level of quality that CIOs demand. Think about that—controlled cost while maintaining the speed and scalability you need. Plus, you don’t have to recruit and retain talent. Onshore outsourcing can be the best of both worlds.

To find success, find balance. With companies concerned about cost, quality and talent, onshore outsourcing has proven to be “just right.”

Goldilocks had to try all three bowls of porridge before deciding which one was just right. But you’ve done your research ahead of time. You already know which one is too hot, too cold and just right. So, which bowl of porridge are you going to try?

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