By Scio Team
The way we conceptualize work is changing, first as a result of the pandemic, and second as a result of technology letting us do something unthinkable a mere five years ago. The result is a landscape where a lot of organizations are more willing than ever to adapt to their collaborators, offering ways to work that strike a better balance between their personal and professional lives.
However, what does this balance mean? Because the more we think about changing our actual practices, the more challenges and conundrums appear in the need of a solution. And the software industry, as one of the leaders in this evolution of the workplace, is experimenting with ideas more than ever to hit the specific balance between work, personal life, and the needs of a given project.
A right to disconnect
A lot of buzzes were heard when France, back in 2018, began to implement the so-called “Right to Disconnect”, a legal framework aimed at protecting workers from retaliation if they choose to not attend calls after their shifts. As proposed, this regulation showed that “work” as we knew it was starting to evolve, as more and more tasks in a company started to need a kind of specialization that sometimes could not be accomplished in the traditional 9-5 office hours.
This fostered a culture of being “always-on”, which could not be healthy or sustainable at all in the long run. After all, a good outcome for any project could come from an exhausted team that always had to be ready and reachable? The Right To Disconnect tried to solve this, with mixed results.
“We have our best ideas in unexpected places, at unexpected times. Excelling in today’s economy thus demands short bursts of intensive thought followed by seemingly unproductive – yet necessary – lulls. Nourishing such approaches requires workplace flexibility, not regulatory rigidity; depriving skilled professionals of these practices by telling them exactly when and how to work also deprives them of potential opportunities to create value”, says this article by the non-profit policy research organization R Street.
So, even if the intent of these legal frameworks is desirable and necessary, it could be argued that they also fail to solve many of the intricacies of working in industries like software, where different dynamics are at play. Programming, for example, is as much of creative activity as it is a technical one, trying to solve complex puzzles as efficiently and elegantly as possible in a given timeframe.
This means that, even if everyone obviously needs time to rest and relax, the idea of rigid boundaries to solve a programming challenge during a project is closer to the idea of “mandatory fun” than keeping a healthy boundary, with some companies even going as far as disabling emails and chat programs to ensure their workers comply.
“While some procedures, like taking the email server offline, will help to ensure that all employees are on equal footing, this approach may have unintended adverse consequences on employees with flexible work arrangements. Many caregivers, for instance, handle family responsibilities during the day and resume work after hours. IT departments will need to navigate these issues with human resources and user departments”, claims the HR blog First Reference in this article.
This same quote, however, points out a solution that can keep boundaries clear, without enforcing a total disconnect that can result in counterproductive outcomes: flexibility. As the pandemic rages on, and we rethink what work is, the idea of flexibility starts to become more than choosing to work from home or going to the office on a given day; is the ability, up to a point, to set our schedules, our times, or to select to collaborate with an organization that closely aligns with ourselves.
We’re here for you
Thanks to the rise of remote work, the possibility of working with clients abroad in tech hubs like Silicon Valley and Austin without having to lose boundaries or sleep is closer than ever thanks to Nearshore development companies like Scio. But what distinguishes a Nearshore, exactly?
Nearshore companies are getting popular lately, and it’s easy to see why: the whole idea is to offer outsourced development services within the time zone that matches the clients as closely as possible. Being located in Mexico, Scio works mainly with clients based in the US, collaborating with tech firms on projects with all kinds of challenges to solve, without needing the odd working hours that might result from working with a client in Europe or Asia.
This results in a close collaboration that still leaves room for boundaries, as the working hours of the team and the clients are the same; in fact, the schedules offered by Scio make sure there’s overlap in the middle of the day while leaving every developer to choose when to begin and stop working.
“Some of our clients realized that their developers not only can come from Wisconsin, Wyoming or Missouri; they are finding an enormous amount of talent available in Mexico and other LATAM countries that have no problem whatsoever connecting remotely to collaborate”,
“We can see that in our more recent applicants, who value these opportunities and are more than ready to join from anywhere in the world. Our focus is on certain time zones that are not too far apart from our clients, but Latin America as a whole has opened as a software development possibility like never before.”Tells Rodimiro Aburto, Service Delivery Manager at Scio.
This results in the possibility of expanding the scope of things you develop and learn from, while still maintaining real-time communication with clients in other countries entirely, and without having to adjust your working hours to maintain the same boundaries you are used to, because of the idea of a Nearshore company is to offer convenience in collaboration and communication for both clients and developers, giving you the space to work as you feel best, while maintaining the excellence in outcomes that’s expected in these projects.
“So, what Nearshore comes to offer is the flexibility in which a Development Lead can chat in real-time with a collaborator in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, or Honduras, for example, as a full member of their team while keeping the healthy boundaries in hours that having the same time zone brings”, finishes Rodimiro.
We hope that this article has helped to introduce you to the possibilities of Nearshore outsourcing and shown you how Scio can provide a valuable solution for your business needs. Our team is passionate about creating healthy boundaries for our collaborators while still providing the flexibility needed in the modern workplace. If you are interested in learning more, please send us a message. We would be happy to discuss our services with you and answer any questions you may have. Thank you for taking the time to read our article!