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How to Manage a Dedicated Software Development Team?

Table Of Content:

  1. What is a dedicated software development team?
  2. How to manage a Dedicated Development Team?

2.1 Schedule Regular 1:1s

2.2 Clearly define and map out expectations

2.3 Communication

2.4 Listen and Respond

2.5 The power of trust

2.6 Feedback

2.7 Support

3. Conclusion

Technological innovations like cloud technology and automation in the past decades are responsible for the rise of robust outsourcing solutions. Even amidst the pandemic, remote workers were closely integrated into the company’s daily business operations and other work processes. But if we compare traditional IT outsourcing with hiring a dedicated development team, the latter sounds much more like a strategic partnership nowadays.

Hiring dedicated teams are very beneficial, they offer everything from staff augmentation services to actively participate in making critical product-related decisions. Having a dedicated software development team feels similar to having your own remote IT team but just with the extra flexibility of on-demand services.

Although, if you want to reach such a high level of efficiency then you must avoid mistakes in hiring dedicated developers. You need to plan your projects very carefully and need to conduct effective management as well as thorough optimization.

So, I have written this article to help you through hiring and managing dedicated development teams. It’s already a complicated process and not to mention all the confusion and myths that are going around about it. So, here is a short guide that can get you through it all.

1. What is a dedicated software development team?

A dedicated development team is an industry practice where the software development service provider provides professionals to the client on a duration or project basis depending upon what they have mutually agreed upon in the contract.

The decision would be of the client for which skilled and experienced developers they need to hire for their software project. So, you need to check out their skill sets and experience before you go recruiting them out of the blue.

It is also a client’s decision whether he/she wants to manage the team personally or wants to hire a project manager from the service provider for the same. It is recommended that you hire a project manager because the team will be working from the office of the service provider so you want to be able to supervise them personally on the worksite.

Now, what about the money? The dedicated team is a payment model in itself. It is a simple and transparent pricing system. You have to make monthly payments depending upon the size of the team you hired. The payment you make will consist of employees’ salaries, a fee of the service provider, and some other administrative overheads.

People generally go for this model when they are not so sure about the scope of the project and its requirements. So as they can be changed during the development process, it is better to hire a team but an in-house team would cost a fortune, and that too without hiring experts, the only way to go is hiring a dedicated software development team.

The only aim of hiring a team is to compensate for the lack of expertise and make them work effortlessly as they are one of your team.

2. How to manage a Dedicated Development Team?

After you have accomplished the first step of hiring the right people on your team from your software vendor, now it is about time you start contributing effectively to the software development process. While you are working with a remote team, project management can be very challenging. So you need to ensure about certain tasks before your software outsourcing company performs or manages them for you. You also need to take care of the things mentioned below:

  • Make sure modern technology-based tools for communication are used amongst the team members to collaborate effectively
  • Make sure to add project management tools and web applications that can add value to the entire process.
  • Schedule management tools for creating bridges between your in-house teams and dedicated developers.

2.1 Schedule Regular 1:1s

A one-on-one or 1:1 is a meeting between you and one of your team members who are responsible to report to you on the software development project. It is a deducted time slot where you both can check in with each other. It is where the team member shares the project progress report which depicts the entire scenario for what’s bothering them and what you can do to support them.

You can also set up some regular one on ones so that you get to know your team members better and have a positive impact on them and the work they do for you. Trust me, this is more important than anything because they are the key to managing your software project successfully.

Your role of manager also puts you in the position of a project manager. So you may ask your dedicated development team about the previous progress reports and plans for the next week. This will help you manage your team and guide them on the project in an organized manner. You can hold these 1:1 meetings once every two weeks but then again it all depends on what works for you and your team.

2.2 Clearly define and map out expectations

When you are leading a software development team to deliver high-quality software, you must identify and map out the client’s all business requirements because it is the key to your success. You need to define the scope of development very clearly. That will help you identify expected deliverables and build a schedule for each one of them.

You should also list them all out at a single place in the project management tool from where your entire team can access and understand them to ensure that they are on the same page and know what they have to work on.

Capturing the requirements and expected deliverables as well as writing them down can make your team committed to achieving them.

2.3 Communication

While your project is in progress, you need to have an open communication channel that is accessible to everyone. If it suits then you can send a message on a public channel instead of sending it in private chats. You can also post the article on your company’s internet instead of sending it via mail.

Now, why should you do it?

Practicing open communication will help you set an example of how excellent communication is not only transparent but also accessible to everyone. It also helps you reduce duplicated work and manage at scale. But if there is any private or sensitive matter that you want to discuss in person then you could opt for one-on-one. It is quite perfect for that.

2.4 Listen and Respond

It doesn’t matter how well you have communicated the scope of the project and other details, developers may still have some questions. This is just another iterative process so if you want your efforts to pay dividends then you need to involve your developers to start working once you have gathered all the requirements.

You need to allow the software engineers to extend, critique, or even reject a specific requirement if it doesn’t make any sense. The same thing can be true once the project has taken off. The requirements are like a living document that could evolve with time during the development phase.

Just as not every plan works out well in the end, it is fine if not all sets of requirements survive until the end. Only the best ones will get through and their effective execution is what will make customers love your product.

2.5 The power of trust

If you have hired some people to do your work for you then you better trust them for it. Think about it — you have recruited what it seems to you were the best people for the job then why not let them do what they do best? Also, you paid a large sum of money to get them on board. So, just trust them to deliver.

It might happen during the development phase that you might want the developer to do work in some way and he/she wants to do it the other way. In such situations, it is better if you let them do their job in their way. Even if they come out being wrong at the end, then what could happen worse? Would the work be less efficient? But at least the work would be done well enough.

Don’t try to be perfect, you might end up doing nothing in the end. You may have some very good insights and you can pass them on too but try to get too involved in the work. You are a manager of the project for a reason — you are there to manage not to micromanage. That won’t get the project anywhere good. Also, micro-managers are not considered as good managers.

2.6 Feedback

A good working culture is required if you want high productivity in your office and efficiency in your product. For that, you should be encouraging and open to receive feedback that would help you build a professional relationship with your dedicated development team. In my opinion, face-to-face communication is much more reliable and there is no room for any misinterpretation that may occur during text-based communication.

Even when you are giving feedback on your team’s work, you should be more specific and be detailed about it. For example, if a developer writes a code too fast then you should take time to explain to him why their solution could not live up to your standards and client’s expectations.

But don’t go over just finding faults in them. Make it a meaningful conversation where you talk about their strengths, the benefits of their work, and how some limitations are stopping them from giving their best. This could be a way to create a bond with your team members and promote a culture of trust among each other.

2.7 Support

Every software service provider allows the client to custom build their team of dedicated developers to fulfill your needs. The team support and well-being of the members are the responsibility of the provider. They are always willing to walk the extra mile to help you integrate your development team into a home-based unit and establish a good rapport with them.

3. Conclusion

Dedicated software development teams can serve you as your integrated product development partners which is the opposite of traditional outsourcing. Such a team can deliver top-notch quality software products while helping you out making your company more agile, flexible, and efficient. All this can happen if you know how to manage these teams well.

Instead of thinking of them as just a service provider, you should see them as your strategic partner as they will be involved in every process including employing a team, managing software development, quality assurance, and more.

Also, your internal management team must work just as they would with an internal IT department to optimize all the work processes. And this includes everything from development and project management methodologies, all the quality assurance and code reviews.

If you crave to reap all the benefits of traditional outsourcing but also want to innovate constantly and want to gain a competitive edge in the market then collaborating effectively with a high-functioning dedicated software development team is a way to go.

I hope you enjoyed reading the article, if you have some queries or suggestions then please share them in the comments section below.

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Julia Smith

Julia Smith

Tech-based Content Creator | Tech Geek | Like to contribute Information regarding latest Tech News and Trending Technologies| Always Curious to Learn New Things

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