The trend of hiring remote software development teams for executing IT projects has fuelled up in recent years. Take a look at the interesting data on remote software development as of 2021, gathered by the online portal Review42!
- 55% of the businesses around the world prefer hiring remote employees up to a certain capacity.
- 18% of the working professionals are engaged in telecommuting on a full-time basis and 77% of these telecommuters have reported being more productive.
- Firms can save as much as $ 11,000 per year, for each remote employee working on a part-time basis.
Remote work undoubtedly ushers in myriad benefits for employers and employees unanimously. The key gain is of course enhanced productivity for employees and cost-reduction for employers.
However, managing a remote dedicated software development team, particularly in offshore locations, is quite challenging and requires a different management approach altogether. Therefore, I have penned down crucial strategies that will help you to lessen the gap between your in-house and remote teams, and also ensure that your remote workforce stays efficient, productive, satisfied, and accountable for their deliveries.
Check out some important insights on remote hiring and the effective management of remote software development teams!
Remote Teams: An Overview
The term remote teams generally refer to a group of professionals with diverse competencies, belonging to various time zones; working in unison towards a specified objective. Nevertheless, many software development teams/agencies have their employees working remotely from a single country or even city. These employees usually work from their respective dens and are categorized as remote teams as well.
The Key Components of a Remote Software Development team
- A Business Analyst for accumulating the requirements of the project, comprehending the project’s scope, and understanding the needs of clients as well as their pain areas.
- Software engineers, front-end and back-end developers, or a full stack developer depending on your project needs
- A team lead, who understands the technical requirements well, is a part of the development team and looks after the technical delivery of the project.
- UI/UX designer for ensuring that your product possesses a rich interface and delivers a sound user experience
- A QA engineer for analyzing test results and identifying errors during the initial developmental stages
- A project manager for handling documentation and budgeting, leading teams and making them accountable for what they deliver, anticipating as well as managing risks, ensuring timely project delivery, signing SOWs, and communicating with clients.
- A scrum master who will implement agile principles and make sure they are adhered to by the team members as well as by the client-side in order to avoid sprint interruptions by introducing unexpected add-ons.
Tips on Hiring Remote Programmers
Hiring the right set of software programmers/agency is no cakewalk and involves a series of validations and checklists. Check them out!
For validating the proficiency and engineering skills of software development firms/dedicated teams; you can go through their company profiles published on B2B research platforms such as Clutch, GoodFirms, Wadline, Upwork, Freelancer, VenturePact, Toptal, RemoteOK, etc. These platforms analyze and enlist leading software firms, mentioning their level of excellence; and as such, ease out the process of hiring an IT agency.
Check out the following aspects while hiring developers or an app development company from a remote location.
- Industry-specific content published by the firms through reading their blogs, research papers, surveys, podcasts, etc.
- Core competencies and technology stacks
- The firm’s achievement – Projects delivered successfully and other accolades
- The various work models offered
- Events and recognitions like hackathons
Factors to Consider while picking your Remote Software Development Team
Skillset and Expertise
Ensure that the software developers you hire possess the following virtues.
- Talented engineers who not only write good quality codes but also are capable of communicating effectively.
- They should handle the team by sharing their controversial opinions, are capable of accomplishing goals along with a team, and acknowledge individual inputs by peers at the same time.
Software professionals should be keen to work on interesting and challenging projects. They should be proactive enough to ask questions, provide suggestions concerning tasks like organizing sprints, and imbibe thought processing within the members of other teams as well.
Ability to acquire new Skills
The members of your remote team should be able to walk that extra mile and be eager to expand their skillset. Professionals who are naturally self-learners and are willing to push limits for acquiring new skills without even being asked to do so; are preferable.
Sense of Responsibility
A sense of responsibility is an important trait to look for in the software workforce you hire. Employers may ask questions regarding their way of preparing reports, planning their day, prioritizing tasks, dealing with unplanned fixes, and executing alignment meetings and rollbacks; to figure out this trait.
Key Steps to Building a Productive Software Development Team
Selection of the Apt Engagement Model for the Project
Selecting the right set of remote programmers or a development team is crucial. Coming to the first step of hiring a workforce for your project, consider the below-mentioned questions.
- Does their technical skillset befit your project requirements?
- Is the developers’ location suitable for you?
- Are the developer charges within your budget?
Once, you are satisfied that the aforesaid criteria suit your needs, check on the following aspects.
- The past projects they had worked on, the skills they had obtained, and the quality of work accomplished by them.
- Check for references like clients’ testimonials, reviews, etc.
Once, you have finalized your dedicated developers’ team, it’s time for onboarding. The steps given below will ensure a smooth onboarding process.
- Introducing the team to your project management toolkit through training sessions and providing the required login credentials.
- Providing clear instructions about your data security protocols and the communication strategy you’ve selected.
- Discussing the preferred payment model for the team
- Setting the priorities and tasks for individual programmers
- Ensuring that all team members are on the same page regarding the fulfilling of project objectives.
Skill-enhancement via Training sessions
Improving the skill set of your remote team via training sessions enables you to create a trustworthy team that will stay with your enterprise for a longer period. Moreover, this strategy helps you to deliver successful projects, grow exponentially, and hence, elevates the productivity of your business to the next level.
Monitoring the Team’s Performance
Since your team is working remotely, you need to effectively monitor their performances through continual tracking of the team’s performance and the project’s progress. This can be accomplished by keeping in touch, through conducting meetings, audio/video calls, etc.
Proper Communication and Collaboration
Proper communication and collaboration is the stepping stone towards success. For this reason, you need to establish a robust and open communication channel with the remote professionals, and more so, if they are working from various time zones. Consider them to be a part of your team and make them feel that they belong to your organization. This way of team building ensures more contribution from your remote programmers. Besides, your firm’s processes should allow them to focus on their core competencies and deliver top-quality product/software. Furthermore, following a bi-directional communication methodology is recommended, to promote knowledge sharing, so that you can benefit from their valuable inputs and suggestions.
Set Clear Expectations
Whether your remote team of software developers is working remotely or virtually, convey your expectations at the very beginning. Be transparent about the working hours, communication processes, required employee availability, responsiveness expected, scheduled meetings, and the need to adhere to strict timelines.
Selecting the Right Remote Management Tools
Invest in the correct Remote Project Management Software, for achieving success. Remote management tools and software come with the following advantages.
- Tracking the project evolution and workforce productivity
- Maintaining and managing timesheets/tasks
- Holding team discussions and interacting effectively across various time zones
Some of the suggested remote management tools are ZOOM, TRELLO, ASANA, G-Suite, SLACK, and ZOHO.
Now, that you are well versed in all aspects of remote hiring and management, analyze your objectives and finalize the outsourcing location of your upcoming software development project. It has been observed that most business enterprises prefer a remote software development team in India for fulfilling their project needs.