How do you manage your remote developer team?
As the number of remote developers increases, so does the problem of how to effectively manage a team of remote developers. In our experience, we at Bocasay have become experts in this field. Here are our tips on how to safely manage a team of remote developers.
Choose your team carefully
It goes without saying, but choosing the right people is the most important thing. Skills are obviously a key element, but not the only one. If the remote team you choose doesn’t work hard, isn’t a team player and doesn’t learn quickly, you probably won’t get the results you want. That’s the number one driver of success.
Invest the time required to find talent, recruiting is an important part of a successful project.
Break your project into stages
The projects on which developers work can be more or less long. In any case, dividing the deliverable into different tasks will allow you to better control its progress. Since we are not working together, it is important that each developer is confident in his work in order to be productive and meet the delivery deadlines.
This way, you don’t lose sight of the goal, you can control the direction the project is taking and limit unnecessary mistakes.
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Formal sprints, tools and processes are essential
Once your team agrees on what to produce and why, you need to establish processes. These are rather tedious to establish at first, but they are well worth it in the long run.
These processes must be tailored to your business and make sense to your team members.
There are apps specifically designed for this. Trello is a good example. This tool allows you to create charts, lists, and cards to track your teams’ progress. You can also customize and add more features as the work expands, manage projects, organize tasks and build team spirit all in one place, and more.
Here are some real-world examples you can implement:
- Work in 1-2 week increments (sprints). What you need to develop can change quickly based on what you learn about your users, so work iteratively.
- Introduce best practices into your sprints. For example, have your analytics up to date for decision making, allow time for testing, and schedule a long meeting at the beginning of the sprint to discuss all the elements so that everyone is aligned and has uninterrupted work time throughout the project.
- Have daily, 10-15 minute meetings where each team member says what they did yesterday, what they’re going to do today, and what they’re struggling with. The 🗝️ key to accountability.
If you are not technically proficient, designate a technical project manager
If you are not face-to-face with your team and do not have enough technical expertise to evaluate what your team members are doing, then it would be a good idea to appoint a technical project manager to your team, who will be inherently more competent than you.
He or she will be responsible for measuring the speed and efficiency of your team and ensuring that everyone is accountable for the speed and efficiency of their work. Knowing how to delegate to the right person can only be beneficial to you and your employees.
Track your development speed and improve it over time
Delivery dates are one of the ⚠️️ hot buttons in project management. So it’s natural as a project manager, you’d want to have optimal time to consider all the important risks to avoid those pesky conversations about missed deadlines. Plus, the stress generated by late deliveries directly affects the 😒 morale of the team.
Knowing how to measure your speed of execution, will allow you to bring a better quality of working conditions to your employees and will allow you to readjust priorities and increase the efficiency of task execution.
Deceive yourself and find solutions
Making mistakes is never fun. But, there is a silver lining: mistakes can provide you with lessons that will help you improve and grow in your work. It can be difficult to get past the pain of missteps or failures, but if you are able to see them as opportunities to grow and improve, then these mistakes become a source of learning.
There is no single working model. You need to experiment to discover what works best for your company and your teams. Turn your fears, doubts, and failures into 👍 constructive discussions. Trust your chosen talent and make them an active part of the solution, rather than the problem.
Try to get everyone involved
Whether you’re one of those who sees remote work as a one-time thing, or you fully embrace the change, when it comes to engaging your team of developers and how to involve remote employees, it’s all on your shoulders.
Try to share your wins 🏆, struggles, learnings, and concerns with everyone on the team. It’s a little tricky at first to do this via Slack or video chat, but it’s worth it. The remote dynamic can make people feel isolated or excluded. You also need to remember to challenge regularly if you want your team to be truly engaged.