5x More Resilient: How Scrum Values Power High-Performing Engineering Teams

5x More Resilient: How Scrum Values Power High-Performing Engineering Teams

Did you know that high-performing software engineering teams are 5 times more likely to report a resilient work culture? 
In today’s fast-paced tech landscape, where deadlines loom and change happens in the blink of an eye, building a team that can weather any storm is no longer a luxury – it’s essential.  

At Scio, we understand the power of fostering resilience within our teams. That’s why we interview Yamila Solari, her dedication to fostering growth, both in the financial and human capital realms, shines through in everything she does. As General Manager and Coaching Leader at Scio, she leverages her 19+ years of tech industry experience to empower software development teams, guiding them on their journeys of professional and personal development. Yamila’s passion is evident in her role as a coach and facilitator, where she instills resilience within engineering teams, equipping them to thrive in the ever-evolving tech landscape. 

The Cost Factor of In-House Teams vs. Nearshoring

Yamila defines resilience as “the ability of a team to bounce back from challenges, adapt to change, and consistently deliver high-quality results, even under pressure.” In the world of software development, this translates to teams that:

  • Meet tight deadlines without sacrificing quality. 
  • Embrace unexpected changes with agility and flexibility. 
  • Rally together to overcome roadblocks and obstacles. 
  • Maintain high morale and motivation throughout the project lifecycle. 

So, how does Scio cultivate this kind of unbreakable spirit? The answer lies in their unique approach, built upon the core principles of Scrum values.  

Enhancing Team Efficacy Through Scrum Values 

At Scio, the Scrum values are not just buzzwords; they are the lifeblood of their team culture. Here’s how Yamila translates these values into actionable strategies: 

  • Commitment: Fostering a genuine sense of ownership and shared responsibility, where every team member feels invested in the project’s success. 
  • Focus: Implementing clear deadlines, defined sprints, and regular progress checks to keep everyone focused on the goal. 
  • Openness: Encouraging transparent communication, open dialogue, and collaborative problem-solving, ensuring everyone is on the same page. 
  • Respect: Celebrating diverse perspectives, valuing individual strengths, and creating an environment where everyone feels heard and appreciated. 
  • Courage: Embracing calculated risks, encouraging innovation, and empowering team members to step outside their comfort zones. 

The Experience Cube 

Drawing upon her extensive experience building diverse teams, Yamila uses an interesting tool: the experience cube. Created by Gervase Bushe, it is a communication tool that is becoming indispensable in agile organizations. Yamila teaches members of teams to use this technique to make sure they are expressing their whole selves (feelings, thoughts, needs, and wants) whenever they discuss high-stakes issues inside the team. In her words, “I’ve encountered situations where personality differences and varying working styles seemed insurmountable obstacles. However, using the Experience Cube has allowed team members to express themselves fully and feel contained by the team, which in time, has helped the team to solve their conflicts.  

Maintaining Energy and Stamina 

Building resilience is not about tackling challenges; it is also about having the “energy and stamina” to persevere. Scio understands this, and Yamila highlights the importance of strategies like: 

  • Transparent communication for a free flow of information that saves energy 
  • Investing enough time in building trust and alignment in the team. 
  • Flexible work arrangements to promote work-life balance. 
  • Recognition and appreciation for individual and team accomplishments. 

In the interview, she shares a powerful anecdote about a situation where reaching an agreement seemed impossible. Through coaching and unwavering focus on the shared goal, the team not only overcame their differences but delivered a project that exceeded expectations. This story serves as a testament to the power of resilience. 

Building Your Own Resilient Software Engineering Team: Actionable Tips for C-Suite Leaders 

As C-Suite leaders, fostering resilience within your software engineering teams can be a game-changer. Here are some key takeaways: 

  • Embrace the Scrum values: Create a culture of commitment, focus, openness, respect, and courage. 
  • Invest in team building: Foster strong relationships and a sense of shared purpose. 
  • Promote open communication: Encourage transparency and collaboration at all levels. 
  • Recognize and reward individual and team achievements. 
  • Invest in leadership development: Empower your managers to coach and build resilient teams. 

Creating an unbreakable software engineering team is not a one-time project; it is an ongoing journey. By incorporating these strategies and drawing inspiration from Scio’s success story, you can build a team that thrives under pressure, consistently delivers exceptional results, and gives a true competitive advantage to your organization. 

Do you have an example of a time when your team demonstrated incredible resilience? Share your story in the comments! We love hearing how organizations are putting these principles into practice, and your experience could inspire others. 

What Does It Take To Develop The Craft Of Leadership In Software Development?

What Does It Take To Develop The Craft Of Leadership In Software Development?

Curated by: Sergio A. Martínez

Seems obvious to say that a good Team Lead is a core element of any software engineering project. Managing the team, ensuring deadlines are met, and making sure all tasks are completed to a high-quality standard is the bare minimum to get a positive outcome, and any Lead that tries with less is not going to achieve many positive results. They need to act as mediators between their team, management, and stakeholders and are responsible for monitoring progress, motivating the team, issuing instructions on a daily basis, and generally being the most knowledgeable people around when it comes to the technical aspects of the project.

What Does It Take To Develop The Craft Of Leadership In Software Development?

As you can imagine, these reasons demand an immense amount of skill and craftsmanship from their leads. Not only do team leaders need to have a deep understanding of the technology they are working with, but they must also know how to properly manage people to work together efficiently, which often means leading by example, setting realistic goals with achievable deadlines, and mastering some excellent communication skills to ensure everyone is up to date on their responsibilities and progressing towards a common goal. 

But how does a leader come to be? Usually, possessing several essential qualities like exceptional problem-solving capabilities and expertise with the required techniques is the first thing that comes to mind. Some natural affinity to effectively communicate project goals and set expectations for each team member, drawing out key strengths from individual members to leverage in completing tasks efficiently and on time, is also part of a leader’s toolkit. And perhaps more importantly, an effective team leader possesses strong organizational skills, able to schedule with clarity, stay on track, and delegate work accordingly. As such, these qualities are paramount for becoming an effective leader in software development teams, but they have to come from somewhere. They have to be mastered.

Building a good leader from the ground up

What Does It Take To Develop The Craft Of Leadership In Software Development?

Moving from a senior developer role to a Team Lead can be challenging for even the most experienced professionals. It typically involves moving from primarily executing tasks to leading and motivating other individuals and learning to develop and execute strategies. Additionally, being responsible for other people’s learning progress gives those in this position added pressure to ensure the right guidance is given, and tough decisions may have to be made if results don’t meet expectations. There are great potential rewards with this type of career advancement, of course, but it can be daunting at first, and take an important toll on the developer. 

To be honest, I never considered myself an innate leader”, says Martín Ruiz Pérez, Team Lead and Senior Application Developer at Scio. “For me, an innate leader is someone who naturally gravitates towards leading roles, and seems to have a knack to organize others and bring a team together. It’s not something that I saw myself doing when I started designing software, so I had to learn as I went. However, looking up to the leaders I had at Scio helped me to understand and develop a good approach to leadership. At the very beginning, I tried to use a more practical leadership style, but some important things in terms of organization and management kept slipping from my grasp, so learning the appropriate soft skills was my biggest challenge, which might give me less trouble if I had a more natural disposition towards leadership. 

After all, leaders come in all shapes and sizes and should possess a variety of unique skills. And while some have a knack for motivation, communication, and organizing projects, it has long been debated as to whether such leadership traits are intrinsic or can be learned. On one hand, raw natural ability is something many leaders possess and likely accounts for some of their success, but on the other hand, continuous learning efforts by any individual can pay considerable dividends in building up leadership skills, especially when it comes to fields like software, where trends, tools, and framework seem to change daily. The most successful leaders likely combine both powerful innate abilities with relentlessly targeted learning, just like Martín’s case, but without the proper environment to grow into this role, the results will never get any better. So, if an organization wants to help an experienced software developer to grow into the role of a leader, they need to cultivate an environment that promotes self-reflection and encouragement. Developing effective leadership skills requires practice and feedback, and providing resources within their organization for professional development is beneficial for both their employees and the company as a whole. By providing this guidance, support, and tools needed to transition from individual contributor to leader, the company can empower them on their journey to success.

In my case, one of the most challenging aspects of this journey into a more leading position was mastering the ability to become the ‘director of the orchestra’, so to speak, and bring everyone on the same page”, continues Martín. “Someone whose job is to direct people needs the technical expertise to, let’s say, understand what the client wants and translate that into a viable product, document it, and communicate that goal to the team, knowing who is best suited for the task. And learning to do that took some conscious effort on my part and support from others to avoid micromanaging the team, or letting deadlines slip. Nowadays, I try to bring everyone together and listen to ideas, and support my teammates in everything I can, but in the end, you need to come to terms with the responsibility of a good outcome.

The challenges of leadership nobody tells you about

What Does It Take To Develop The Craft Of Leadership In Software Development?

It is often said that being a leader comes with certain inherent challenges, but some lesser-known issues lurk beneath the surface. One problem, for example, that can arise from taking on a leadership role in software development is the difficulty of staying up to date with the latest trends. As technology advances rapidly, it can be hard for a leader to make sure their team’s skillset is aligned with the current industry expectations, and they must balance taking initiative to encourage change and innovation while still staying within the framework of guidelines provided by clients, business partners, or stakeholders. As we said, being a successful leader requires more than just technical skills; it also calls for managerial aptitude and negotiation savvy.

And these circumstances sometimes result in interesting situations for a development team whose levels of experience with different frameworks or technologies may vary a lot. As you might imagine, working as a leader with people who have more experience and knowledge than you in certain areas can be a challenging situation to navigate, particularly when most up-to-date trends and best practices are always evolving. A great leader must recognize this challenge, but also put their trust in the other team members and allow them to lead ideas and initiatives even when it may be difficult to do so at first; doing so gives an excellent opportunity for growth both for the leader as well as for the team itself, creating stronger bonds between all parties involved. In short, this situation requires humility, commitment, and directness from all those involved to work through difficulties that may arise during collaboration.

I’ve been part of teams where certain developers have more experience in a specific area or more years in the industry than the leads, but what that could mean for the project is highly variable”, explains Martín. “Having someone with lots of expertise always benefits a team, and as a leader, you should know how to best approach these situations to ensure the best outcome for the product being developed. In fact, on one occasion, I’ve even thought about stepping down from the lead position in favor of someone else or even becoming co-leaders, because I consider that their vision and knowledge might lead the project down a better path. Recognizing those kinds of situations is important, and with the kind of flat organization that Scio has, this can be done rather easily than in most places.

Doing what is best for your team and project could mean making difficult decisions such as these, after all. A leader should always lead with integrity and put the needs of their group before their own; when they do this, the project can only benefit. Stepping down in these situations is never shameful, and one often demonstrates true strength by putting others before oneself. It may be hard, but making a tough decision like that can result in a better product outcome. 

Of course, this is not the only difficult situation that a Team Lead has to deal with. As we have discussed before, promoting someone to a leadership position can be a decision with plenty of implications, mostly because you are taking someone very competent at what they do, and assigning them a job that they may or may not be prepared for. However, becoming an effective leader in software development does not mean leaving your passion behind. The fact of the matter is, by studying and taking time to reflect on what it means to be a leader in the field, you can find ways to combine your individual passions with the leadership skills necessary to become successful in software development. Whether that involves delegating tasks more effectively or learning new coding languages to lead projects yourself, leaders should strive to understand the needs of their teams and how they can best bring out their collective strengths. Truly great leaders recognize that by investing their energy and enthusiasm into the work they do, they will inspire those around them to propel projects forward and reach success both collectively and individually.

Of course, I still enjoy the technical aspect of my job, and I would never wish to leave that behind completely”, explains Martín. “I’m reluctant to see myself as a mere Team Lead or Project Manager, I still have so much to learn about the technical side of development, and I’d like to become a System Architect in the future. However, I’ve seen the importance of having good management abilities for my team, and helping my teammates is something I really like to do, especially in more technical aspects of the project. There are many ways to work, after all. But it is a challenge to balance my responsibilities as a leader with my passion for the nitty-gritty of coding and engineering. Paying enough focus to both is a must.

In other words, allowing software development team leads to stay connected with the technical aspect of a project ensures they don’t suffer burnout. Working solely in a management capacity can be draining and monotonous while keeping abreast of the rapidly changing technical landscape keeps things interesting. It also gives them an outlet to engage their technical skills, which are almost certainly valuable assets on any software development project. Plus, letting the lead developer spend some time writing code enables them to stay current with their craft—they can actively learn new techniques and stay aware of the ever-changing trends in the tech industry. Giving team leads the chance to sometimes participate directly in the work they oversee is beneficial for the productivity and morale of everyone involved.

As a software development lead, it’s often about hitting the complicated balance between authority, responsibility, experience, and technical know-how. Combining authoritative direction with a genuine appreciation for their peers’ tasks and experience is an arduous task that can be difficult to master. Communication skills, technical know-how, and the ability to draw from past experiences are all necessary qualifiers that define a great software team lead, and this balance must be actively maintained while also setting deadlines, managing expectations, and nudging the team in the right direction. Such a challenging balancing act can write the difference between a successful agile team and one stuck in disarray. 

That is why the support of a good organization and the willingness to grow at every opportunity set the leaders at Scio apart. Not for nothing the best software developers in Latin America are part of our teams: the human part of creating great software always remains at the core of our craft.

The Key Takeaways

  • A good Team Lead is a key element of any software engineering project, responsible for team management, meeting deadlines, and ensuring tasks are completed to high quality.
  • For those transitioning into this role, certain challenges exist such as staying up to date with the latest trends in technology and managing teams whose levels of experience vary greatly.
  • By fostering a supportive environment which encourages self-reflection and professional development, companies can empower team leads on their journey to success.
  • Combining natural leadership qualities with carefully targeted learning efforts is key for successful leadership while allowing leads to engage in the technical aspects of development keeps them productive and motivated.
What Is The Meaning Of True “Craftsmanship” In Software Development?

What Is The Meaning Of True “Craftsmanship” In Software Development?

Curated by: Sergio A. Martínez

Craftsmanship is timeless, being an integral practice to human history since the dawn of our species. It represents a quality of uniform excellence, often characterized by removing unnecessary elements from a design and bringing out the best in the crafted object. And although craftsmanship is often associated with aesthetic pursuits like painting or sculpture, its importance goes beyond; it serves as a powerful reminder of the value of hard work and skilled ‘hands-on’ effort, a notion that helps us tap into our creativity and realize our ambitions. Mastering craftsmanship, therefore, is not only a source of motivation but also a means to change our current place for the better.

What Is The Meaning Of True “Craftsmanship” In Software Development?

And considering how technology is the biggest agent of change in our world, it might be interesting to find out if the idea of craftsmanship has a place in this modern computer-driven reality. Is there craftsmanship to be found in software development? After all, programming consists of a combination of hard skills, innovative techniques, and a love for perfecting processes constantly that translate into high-quality products. It can be said that developers practice a craftsmanship approach in every project, taking pride in the details and focusing on making changes that have a clear impact on performance, stability, scalability, and many other aspects of development. 

However, for most people, it’s easy to overlook the art behind software development, but the craftsmanship is present in every little task. From developing feature-rich designs and diagrams to writing clean and error-free code, the job of a software developer involves multiple levels of precision and detail that demand proper diligence. A well-crafted piece of software is an accomplishment, just as a well-crafted painting or sculpture would be, with each step involving thoughtfulness, attention to detail, and careful consideration. There’s an almost creative element to the job of writing software since developers must find ways to solve programming puzzles with innovative ideas and stylish solutions, so designers must have some artistic understanding of how users interact with technology. Nonetheless, this approach must coexist with the demands of an industry that is always moving forward, making today’s software development an incredibly ingenious and complex task that must always rise to the challenge.

The balance between craftsmanship and business

What Is The Meaning Of True “Craftsmanship” In Software Development?

Crafting software is an attempt to capture a responsive balance between the idealistic embrace of artistic virtue and the practical needs of a business environment. On one hand, developers want to use their creativity to build something meaningful that reflects a sense of usefulness and long-lasting quality. On the other hand, there are ever-present realities that require careful decisions about timelines and budget, and finding harmony between these factors while developing software can be hard to navigate. However, it’s by solving this creative tension that developers ultimately can create elegantly well-rounded solutions.

Still, it’s no small feat: both angles need to be taken into consideration when pursuing a successful project. It takes careful forethought, planning, and collaboration from everyone involved (developers, project managers, stakeholders, etc.) to prioritize craftsmanship over profit while still satisfying the business demands. The biggest challenge here is maintaining quality while meeting time and budget constraints; if a product is rushed out the door too soon or neglected too long, users will pay the price with buggy applications or poor feature implementation, so it’s important to have an experienced team of professionals who understand their collective responsibility to craft perfect software while keeping in mind all other key objectives.

As we have already mentioned, the importance of craftsmanship in software development can often be overlooked. It’s easy to rush through a project to meet a deadline and sacrifice quality, but this doesn’t end well in the long run. Quality software is efficient, minimizing user frustration and increasing overall productivity, and crafting robust software requires an investment of time and thought that demands an eye for details both big and small. High-quality craftsmanship requires rigorous testing before deployment, as well as regular updates after implementation to ensure maximum efficiency at all times. In other words, software craftsmanship may involve an initial extra effort, but it pays off by creating an outstanding user experience for years.

Thus, craftsmanship is an idea that one should take care of and pride in when writing code. Being a software craftsman involves learning, understanding, and researching best practices to write amazing code, with a developer constantly asking themselves questions such as: are there better ways to refactor this piece of code? How can I make this easier to maintain? Is there an accepted design pattern that I could use here? By taking the time to ask these questions themselves, developers can ensure that their software is of higher quality and more robust than it otherwise would be, the result of putting your knowledge, dedication, experience, and passion for problem-solving at the forefront. Craftsmanship in software development requires attention to detail, continual refinement from iteration to iteration, and an interest in learning new technologies for their work and aims for excellence when building quality products.

Craftsmanship at every level

What Is The Meaning Of True “Craftsmanship” In Software Development?

True craftsmanship in software development can be seen in its intricate details. Developers who take their time to create their projects with a focus on the elegance of style and precision when producing games, websites, or applications that stand out from the crowd. Crafting a piece of software to be efficient and durable takes skill and talented developers to understand the importance of meeting user expectations, and making sure their work lives up to those standards by adding creative touches wherever possible. Part art, part science—true craftsmanship in software development makes the difference between an ordinary application and one that really shines when developers care about…

  • Writing clean and maintainable code: Craftsmen developers strive to write code that is easy to read, understand, and maintain over time. This means using meaningful variable names, avoiding duplication, and following established coding standards.
  • Building scalable software: Good software craftsmen know how to design and build software systems that can scale to meet the needs of a growing user base. This means understanding how to distribute workloads across multiple machines and designing software with horizontal scaling in mind.
  • Emphasizing testing: Crafting software means placing a strong emphasis on testing. Developers who practice craftsmanship ensure that their code is thoroughly tested and they use automated testing tools to make sure that any changes they make to the code do not break existing functionality.
  • Being efficient with code: A software craftsman understands the importance of being efficient with code. They know that every line of code that they write has an impact on the overall performance of the application, so they strive to write code that is as lean and efficient as possible.
  • Continuous improvement: Finally, software craftsmen are always looking for ways to improve their skills and the quality of their work. They stay up-to-date with the latest tools and techniques, and they are always looking for ways to improve their code and their processes.

In short, software development is an ever-evolving understanding of how coding works and communicates with different systems. By developing software, coders, and engineers are constantly pushing the boundaries of what can be done, learning from a variety of sources, and tackling complex tasks in efficient ways. It’s hard work, but the craftsmanship exhibited within can be extremely rewarding, as it offers an opportunity to create something useful and marketable that solves a problem or makes life easier for everyone. By continuously pushing their own boundaries of excellence, software developers are able to develop projects that achieve unprecedented levels of quality while ensuring usability and scalability. It’s this iterative approach that separates the best software projects from those just good enough—and it’s the commitment to continuous improvement and craftsmanship exhibited by software developers that allow users to seamlessly interact with highly sophisticated products.

The Key Takeaways

  • When it comes to software development, the value of craftsmanship cannot be overstated; creativity and artistry are critical for any successful piece of software out there.
  • What craftsmanship provides is an inspiration to always become better, strive for a better result, and grow new skills and talents that will result in a more positive outcome for any project.
  • However, finding the balance between craftsmanship and the business needs of the organization can be tricky, and must be navigated carefully.
  • Craftsmanship is found at every level of a development project, and the best developers will take it seriously to build the best possible product at the end.
You took a new project, but don’t have the necessary developers to bring it to life? Nearshore is here!

You took a new project, but don’t have the necessary developers to bring it to life? Nearshore is here!

Curated by: Sergio A. Martínez

Having a constant stream of upcoming clients and projects is the lifeblood of any software development agency, where providing a high-quality service within well-established deadlines is the main goal. But without a comprehensive plan that outlines every stage of the project, it can be difficult for these organizations to allocate time and resources effectively; after all, a good strategy provides businesses with an overall direction, keeping everyone looking at the same goal during the development cycle. With forethought in place from the very beginning, software agencies can confidently move forward with their services, anticipating potential hurdles down the line, and maintaining progress in a positive direction at every turn. This is what allows them to successfully deliver products quickly and efficiently, meeting the expectations of their client at all times.

You took a new project, but don’t have the necessary developers to bring it to life? Nearshore is here!

However, having a constant stream of projects in the pipeline comes with very specific challenges. We have talked before about how juggling projects effectively is critical for any software development partner, and how a smart allocation of resources is what makes these business models work. But in an industry like software development, where everything moves at a breakneck speed, this is not always feasible. Sometimes, flexible planning is what an organization needs to meet all of its goals satisfactorily, especially when the number of resources on hand may not be ideal. Now, planning a new software project without the necessary talent or resources seems like an insurmountable challenge, but the key is being smart, prioritizing tasks based on their feasibility, determining what skills are necessary for the project, and then reaching out to outside support if required.

Expanding on this last point, working with development partners can be an invaluable resource for software companies in times of limited resources. A development partner not only can provide the means to accomplish projects that are outside of the areas of expertise of a business, but also ensure the successful completion of complex technical tasks without having to hire additional employees or redirect resources away from core activities. That way, development partners allow software companies to keep up with the industry, offering them access to specialized knowledge and insights they may not have in-house to keep moving forward with any project that might come their way.

Don’t fake it until you make it!

You took a new project, but don’t have the necessary developers to bring it to life? Nearshore is here!

Sometimes it can be daunting to take on a new software project and not have the necessary resources on hand to complete it, however, there are certain strategies a business can implement to ensure they are set up for success regardless. First, an organization should take a holistic view of all the components required by the project (from staffing levels to available technology, to timelines) and determine whether or not the necessary resources are accessible or need to be secured. And creating a game plan that includes a breakdown of tasks that can be assigned among team members efficiently, while recognizing workloads, strengths, and limitations is key, with knowledge sharing as a beneficial approach to leverage different perspectives, getting the necessary expertise to complete each task successfully, and avoiding the unnecessary waste of time or resources. 

Of course, there’s always the temptation of “faking it until you make it”, but when it comes to taking on big software projects, this ideally should not be the go-to approach. It may seem like a good strategy when negotiating business with a new client, but the unpredictable nature of development can bring unforeseen risks or cause massive disruptions. Sure, a company specialized in building software applications might not want to pass the chance of getting a new contract when the opportunity arises, and while transparency is important at all levels of the development cycle, outright admitting that you don’t have the necessary staff or resources on hand to start as soon as possible isn’t a wise choice either. What can a business do, then, to ensure you can keep taking on projects without straining your team or improvising a solution?

In that case, it’s important to look for external sources of talent that might help close any gaps in your team that might prevent you from taking on a new project. Utilizing freelance developers or outsourcing certain aspects of the project to other companies can be a way of doing so, but this requires research to make sure that both outside employees and companies have the kind of cultural match that will help ensure the project is completed efficiently (which is an often overlooked yet essential factor when outsourcing). And building a cohesive relationship with your chosen software development partner involves understanding each other’s objectives, communication styles, core values, and management processes. Taking the time to assess these criteria can help guarantee that your expectations are met and also tempers potential clashes in work ethic or style that may arise from having two distinct cultures come together. 

With a seamless cultural match between both parties, you can expect higher levels of trust, better team cooperation, mutual respect, and successful outcomes for both teams”, says Rod Aburto, Service Delivery Manager and Partner at Scio. Nearshore development partners become extensions of a company’s talent network, meaning they can provide talented professionals with the perfect cultural fit. By choosing a Nearshore partner with a similar culture, language, and time zone, companies get to work with people who understand their market and its nuances. This is ultimately beneficial for the business as it can lead to increased efficiency and productivity in the process of developing software and other IT solutions. They bring invaluable insight into product development due to a deep understanding of local trends and user preferences. Hiring nearshoring specialists means that everyone involved in the project understands each other’s needs better. This enables teams to create innovative products that meet users’ demands most effectively.

In other words, hiring a great software development team with the right skills and expertise goes hand-in-hand with finding a partner who can seamlessly fit into the rest of your organization. Not only does this help foster communication between teams, but it will also help your organization to get a better position to accept new projects and challenges from clients, without worrying about communication issues or other hurdles that might risk a positive outcome. By having a shared understanding right from the beginning, it will be much easier to reach both short-term and long-term goals while ensuring everyone is satisfied with the results.

Setting up the team to start right away

You took a new project, but don’t have the necessary developers to bring it to life? Nearshore is here!

Setting up an external team to work on a client’s software project can be daunting, especially if the timeline is tight. However, the right strategy makes all the difference in quickly putting together a team that moves effectively. A good approach is to first structure a comprehensive plan defining goals and tasks, which will be the roadmap for onboarding new members and organizing tasks accordingly. It’s also important to invest time in selecting qualified individuals who fit both the project scope and core values, ensuring that they have the necessary skill set to complete the project on time. Developing clear-cut expectations regarding multitasking and communication protocols are also essential to ensure a successful start. With diligent planning combined with an experienced pool of contributors, setting up an external team to work on a client’s software project can be completed swiftly and deliver favorable outcomes.

Gathering all these requirements will help you select the perfect developers from the ranks for a Nearshore partner, with relevant experience and qualifications that are suited for the project. Once you have established the core members, provide resources and tools to collaborate effectively and efficiently, as well as consider setting up regular check-ins with your client to ensure everyone is on track with any modifications they may require along the way. 

In short, working with Nearshore software development services can be the best bet for taking on more clients and new projects with few resources to spare. Not only does Nearshore software give you access to an entire talented pool of experienced and knowledgeable developers well-versed in the latest technologies and tools, but the seamless integration of these teams means clients will always receive the highest quality of work, so projects can be completed quickly and without issue. Ultimately, working with a Nearshore partner guarantees a cost-effective solution that delivers impressive results, so you never have to pass up another opportunity ever again, or pray that your team can handle yet another challenge without breaking the whole development process in the way.

The Key Takeaways

  • When it comes to software development, no company ever wants to say “no” to a new client, but it can get tricky to juggle too many projects at once.
  • For that reason, it’s pretty common to say yes to a new engagement but scramble to find the necessary resources and staff to make it happen, which can have some unpredictable consequences.
  • If that’s the case, partnering with outside help is the best course of action, ensuring that a steady flow of talent is always available. 
  • Since a seamless integration is critical, Nearshore development partners are the best option, with the right balance of expertise, cultural match, and closeness necessary to bring any project to life.
The dilemma of juggling projects in software development: What’s the best approach to manage and expand your talent?

The dilemma of juggling projects in software development: What’s the best approach to manage and expand your talent?

Curated by: Sergio A. Martínez

Running a software development company has never been an easy task. It requires a unique blend of technical knowledge, creativity, and problem-solving skills to create high-quality products, with developers constantly building up their skills, handling many priorities at once, and carefully planning and organizing every step of the process to meet any client’s expectations. And because software development is so labor-intensive, it can be costly to do it improperly, so organizations must consistently evaluate their approach and make the appropriate adjustments, introducing new frameworks and techniques frequently to keep up with a rapidly changing landscape. Ultimately, a rigorous execution is essential for software organizations hoping to succeed in this highly specialized field.

The dilemma of juggling projects in software development: What’s the best approach to manage and expand your talent?

However, how do these challenges compound for an organization whose business approach is to act as a third-party developer for a variety of clients? How does a software company juggle between projects with such technical complexity? In today’s fast-paced world, development organizations need to be able to efficiently manage multiple projects at once to remain competitive, with success critically dependent on the ability to keep the focus on several projects at once, using their personnel and resources efficiently, and be constantly in the lookout for new opportunities without over-extending their capabilities or burning out the people who make this projects happen. And, of course, this is not an easy task.

Keeping your talent at hand

The Value Of Team Flexibility During Challenging Times: Why Is Dynamic Staffing Better?

Why software development companies often need to juggle multiple projects instead of working on just one at a time is not a mystery; it helps them better capitalize on short-term opportunities while effectively managing long-term projects of differing sizes and levels of complexity, thanks to the vast number of customers searching for innovative and cost-effective solutions to their software problems. For this reason, taking on multiple projects concurrently demands that a company is more than able to respond quickly and efficiently, producing a steady stream of quality work while meeting tight deadlines and even tighter budget constraints. So, it’s no wonder multitasking is so essential for software companies, not just concerning technological capabilities but also in terms of business strategy; with its emphasis on agility and flexibility, juggling several software development projects at once has become an invaluable asset for many modern businesses, allowing them to smoothly transition between phases of a project, and using resources most effectively, helping them leverage their strengths and stay ahead.

However, with so much pressure to deliver high-quality work in an efficient amount of time, there can be a strain on the resources of a company. The organization must have a flexible and coordinated approach to ensure every project is given its due attention before submission. Moreover, the team needs to be diligent without becoming too distracted by tasks from other endeavors, but striking a balance between pushing employees too hard or not utilizing them to their full potential can be difficult to maintain. In other words, the challenges associated with having multiple projects active simultaneously are nothing trivial, but if handled correctly great results can be expected from careful oversight and a dedicated team. 

But what is the biggest challenge at the heart of this?

It’s all about the engagement”, says Luis Aburto, CEO and Founder of Scio. “This kind of work revolves around engagements. An engagement is a contract where you are looking for expertise, and a company does resource allocation to ensure you have the people with the necessary knowledge, skill, and experience to successfully bring an engagement to a conclusion. Of course, these engagements vary widely from one client to another, and in the case of software development, you want to have a healthy mix of experts, like Front-Ends, Back-Ends, UX/UI designers, architects, QA, and so, matching with the goal you want to reach.”

However, this “resource allocation”, as Luis points out, happens at every level of the project, and it’s a constant effort to get right. Making sure that the right people are assigned to the right tasks is key to efficiently completing the project because, in theory, the right mix of people can bring the variety of skills, experience, and ideas necessary to quickly assess possible solutions to any encountered issues and determine the best solution. With the scheduling of tasks thoughtfully carried out, each member of the team should be able to collaborate effectively and focus on their responsibilities, underlining that correct talent management is the core component of a successful technical project. But for a Nearshore company like Scio, this kind of management brings an additional challenge when clients are looking for very specific expertise on their side.

For a company that does software development for external parties, it’s not enough to say that they have the expert on, say, iOS development that their clients are looking for, but also that he or she is available to join the project at a moment’s notice. And here is where things start to get more complex”, says Luis. If a company has the portfolio to show their experience at developing applications for iPhone, but all of their resident iOS experts are currently busy, then grabbing new projects can be infeasible. The obvious answer might be getting the right people ASAP so the opportunity is not lost, but you need to make sure those people are trustworthy, can join the team seamlessly, and can contribute to a positive outcome. And as a company that provides Nearshore support, that’s what we do.

After all, a software development company’s success often hinges on its ability to take on more projects, prioritize client needs, and maintain quality control. And while the best approach for a company to do this is to create a streamlined workflow with clearly defined tasks and deadlines that can easily scale up or down according to the specific project, this is not always doable. Is at this point when bringing talent through a trustworthy partnership is the best way to reach a client’s expectations, but what does that look like?

The balance between risk and opportunity

The dilemma of juggling projects in software development: What’s the best approach to manage and expand your talent?

Talent is the lifeblood of every software development project, and having the right people for the job is what guarantees a successful outcome. Nevertheless, it can be difficult to manage multiple development projects with limited resources in both small and large organizations. Nobody wants the team feeling overwhelmed, resulting in burnout, or developers having to take on more roles than they should to keep up with the workload, which often means that the organization has lost sight of the larger picture, leading to less-than-desirable results that affect the business as a whole. As we said before, balance is difficult to achieve. 

In consequence, finding that sweet spot of having a productive team without overworking them, and allowing for the freedom to take on more projects, is what makes a Nearshore partnership such an attractive option to software development organizations that need to keep moving forward with projects. Striking a healthy balance between what can be encompassed in a finite amount of time while keeping developers motivated and ready to take on challenges is no easy task, which often requires efficient task management and adaptation tactics to succeed. 

But what does it mean to have available people?”, asks Luis Aburto about the need to have wiggle room when taking on projects. “In the industry we use something we call ‘the bench’, which is a bit of a necessary evil but allows an organization to take on new projects with less friction. Otherwise, you would need to tell a client to wait for a couple of months to find and onboard the developer they need, and depending on the type of client, that might not be a realistic ask. You risk that business relationship, and that’s a position no organization ever wants, so managing the talent so you have enough free hands to help, but not so many that your overhead costs skyrocket without any productivity from them, is critical. So a software company should always have a bench of, let’s say, 5% of the total developers, available to take on new engagements, sometimes with internal projects that help people exercise their skills while a new opportunity arises. Because another cost of the bench is that people sitting on it for too long can feel wasted, or stuck, which is never a good mindset to have. So managing the bench and giving the team enough space to operate without burning out people, or leaving them behind, is the mark of a good organization. 

In short, working with Nearshore partners is the most effective way for software development companies to juggle multiple projects without sacrificing quality. It allows teams to keep their focus and maintain oversight on multiple projects at once, which increases efficiency and helps to ensure that each project reaches its completion deadlines on time. The added convenience of aligning time zones also means that there is always time for code review, debugging, and other support tasks, allowing clients to be more certain of the end product’s quality and reliability since it will have been tested on the same platforms as their own systems. 

By leveraging the power of Nearshore teams of developers with expertise in different technologies, companies can effectively spread out their workload while taking advantage of time-zone proximity and cultural similarities to drive faster results. The continuous delivery models used by Nearshore partners such as Scio can also minimize complexity and help accelerate production readiness, which all but guarantees a positive outcome on every project where having talent on hand is critical. It just needs the proper management to ensure everyone is ready to take on a new challenge.

The Key Takeaways

  • For any kind of software development organization, having the right amount of people ready to take on new projects is always critical.
  • However, managing people and resources needs to hit a delicate balance between breathing room to expand development, and keeping people productive at all times.
  • In these cases, expanding the number of people involved in a project through a development partnership might be the best approach.
  • After all, the idea is to keep moving forward with projects, but trying to cut down on everything that might get in the way of a positive outcome, like delays, absence of the appropriate expertise, budget, and deadlines.
  • With a Nearshore partner like Scio, having access to this expertise is easy, seamless, and guarantees room to always keep a project going.
The dilemma of scaling a team in software development: What is the best approach to keep the perfect team size?

The dilemma of scaling a team in software development: What is the best approach to keep the perfect team size?

Curated by: Sergio A. Martínez

The success of any software development cycle relies entirely on the team behind it, and when developers don’t have enough resources to see the project through to its successful completion, it can be a costly outcome for an organization. But when too many resources are allocated at once on a project, unnecessary complexities can be introduced, likely increasing miscommunications and further hindering progress. So finding the perfect balance between talent and resources is essential for any company’s well-being, and flexibility in the size and resources of a team is key for optimal outcomes across the board.

The dilemma of scaling a team in software development: What is the best approach to keep the perfect team size?

However, the matter of team size in a development environment is no joke, and deciding whether to scale or reduce a software development team can be a complicated situation. The main thing to remember, though, is that the size of a team should be driven by strategic needs, not only organizational cost savings, so to make the best decision, it’s essential to take into account the project objectives and timeline. If the aim is to launch quickly on limited resources but find lasting success, then scaling may be more advantageous than reducing the team. But, if the desired outcome is short-term and specialized resources are not needed, reducing might be the right move. Either way, having the right approach is critical. 

But what gets involved in such a decision? Scaling or reducing teams in software development is a real quandary because you (ideally) want to find the right number of people to dedicate to development projects, yet you also don’t want to over-commit resources that you probably can’t justify in the long run. And without good and exact data on the impact of different variables on the project, decision-making will be based on guesswork, which rarely ends well. 

And all this without mentioning the most important element of this whole situation: the people. It goes without saying, but the effects of reducing a development team after a project can be huge; not only the morale of the team is affected, but there’s the risk that it may lead to lower-quality outcomes. After all, when a member leaves, they not only take with them their knowledge and expertise but also affect the very relationship between collaborators and their organization; trust is the first thing to go after deciding that a dev team is too large to keep. So, it’s up to Management to assess the impact of reducing their team and attempt to lessen any fallout as much as possible, even if it means transferring individuals over to other projects or departments temporarily or permanently. 

However, what if this is just not possible for a mid-sized company with a small IT department? How can these organizations approach the dilemma of needing to develop a technological solution but don’t have the resources to hire and let go of the software professionals as they need? It’s important to weigh the various possibilities carefully when it comes to staffing software development initiatives — after all, it can spell the difference between success and failure.

The challenge of bringing talent

The dilemma of scaling a team in software development: What is the best approach to keep the perfect team size?

When a mid-sized company wants to bring a software project to life, it often faces the challenge of attracting experienced developers willing to join these short-termed projects. These ventures (which can range from developing new platforms to introducing automation capabilities in existing programs and systems, to doing web design, building enterprise solutions, and even creating mobile apps and improving customer service through technological interventions) are often crucial to a company’s success, yet most experienced developers tend to opt for longer deals elsewhere with the idea that they are more secure. Furthermore, companies also have to compete with large corporate offers, which can seem unrealistic and exaggerated when compared to the smaller compensation packages they can provide, which leaves companies with few options other than recruiting those without less-than-adequate experience, which can be a very unattractive proposal. 

Sure, the gig economy has opened up new opportunities by connecting mid-sized businesses with freelancers who have proven skills and can step in on a project basis, finding reliable talent often requires larger upfront payments or higher premiums than they might otherwise use to onboard full-time employees, so negotiations need to carefully balance the requirements of the developer and what is expected of them with compensation that makes it worth their while. As a result, a mid-sized company must confront several dilemmas to ensure that this decision is successful and produces results: training new members of the team to be properly knowledgeable about the company’s process and demands, issuing the appropriate tools, managing organizational structure, providing timely support from senior management, and considering projections for future growth and corporate objectives without bankrupting the company, or cutting back on quality standards. In short, the challenges involved with scaling up a software development team aren’t something to be taken lightly, but solutions do exist.

If you’re a mid-sized business, achieving your software development goals may seem daunting. It’s expensive and difficult to build up an internal team of knowledgeable software developers in-house, so partnering with a Nearshore development organization can help you accomplish these ambitions without the worry of in-house management or heavy recruitment costs”, says Luis Aburto, CEO and Founder of Scio, a Nearshore development company located in Mexico. You’ll get access to talented developers trained across the stack that are just as effective as hiring your own team of engineers, and a company like Scio provides full project management support should you need it. So instead of going through the process of building a fixed team, you can easily adjust and tailor your talent depending on the progress being made. Giving yourself the comfortability to tune your team size at any given moment guarantees you won’t be hindered by slowdowns or lagging projects due to issues of manpower.

Flexibility as your best decision

The dilemma of scaling a team in software development: What is the best approach to keep the perfect team size?

It’s a big step for any company to choose to scale up its software development teams or start it from scratch. Finding the right balance between cost-effectiveness, training, and onboarding new employees to ensure success is one of the many challenges that a mid-sized organization faces, which often needs to hire top talent while making sure the personnel is not too expensive for the size of its resources. 

That’s why the option of flexibility offered by an external partner, such as a Nearshore company, can be such a critical difference for mid-sized companies looking to accelerate their technology goals. It enables businesses to access top tech talent without the overhead of recruiting and maintaining a large onsite team, and the flexibility to scale up or down depending on the project goals and resources at hand with speed and precision. With access to a wide pool of experts, you get immediate access to the right combination of skills and experience that your business needs — all while keeping your budget under control. These external companies also have access to higher-quality tools, equipment, and technologies, which will ensure the success of your project in far less time compared to hiring in-house developers. What’s more, these dedicated teams are focused on specific project goals and are incredibly flexible, capable of scaling up or down as needed, giving businesses a tremendous amount of control over their software investments.

In short, for mid-sized businesses looking to take their operations to the next level, Nearshore providers offer an ideal staffing solution. Not only do these services provide access to high-skilled and experienced professionals, but they also offer substantial scalability and flexibility in terms of staff numbers. So, instead of having to employ specialized IT resources on a full-time basis, a Nearshore provider means that businesses can benefit from well-trained professionals on demand, meaning staffing levels can be easily adjusted based on need. This not only helps with cost savings initially, but it keeps staffing and project costs down more generally too – allowing your mid-sized business to truly maximize its opportunities in the modern digital economy.

The Key Takeaways

  • Nowadays, software development is a common component of almost any business, but that doesn’t mean that is easy to do.
  • For mid-sized organizations, acquiring talent for a software project is quite a task, for many reasons (costs, onboarding, requirements, etc.)
  • Competition, costs of development, and the finicky nature of the software industry means that these organizations might require alternatives.
  • Nearshore development, for this reason, might be the answer, offering talent, flexibility and expertise that any organization can access, regardless of size or the challenge of the project.