Most Outsourced Product Development (OPD) companies focus on customer requirements, treat these requirements as god-sent, and try to fulfill those requirements. Is this approach right or wrong?

To say the least, OPD companies that are specialists in Product Engineering (producteering) need to look beyond the customer and at the same time not neglect the requirements of the customer.

OPD companies essentially need to look at customer requirements and the customer’s customer requirements. The difference means long-term success of the software product rather than just focussing on the tactical needs of the customer, just by following the requirements provided by the customer.

OPD vendors can add value to the customer at various phases of development and look at long-term benefits of the software product by engaging themselves along with the core PE (product engineering) group of an ISV. How and where to get involved and how OPD companies can add value depends on the nature of products and the stage at which they are in.

This approach may not be applicable for all product lifecycle services that are provided by OPD vendors and may need to be looked at based on the tactical and strategic benefits that it offers.