Last Updated on March 9, 2023 by sourav sahu
If your entire company model is based on software development, you will eventually reach a point where you need to grow your software development team. Scaling your business is crucial when either your customer base starts to expand more quickly or the stakeholders have new goals they want to accomplish as soon as possible.
The development of software will go smoothly if the best practices have already been established, and qualified individuals have been hired. Processes and practices that were successful for a small team can either stop working altogether or perform worse as you try to scale up to a larger workforce.
What can you do, then, to strengthen your existing development team? As a manager, leader, or product owner, you can use the below tips mentioned in the article to successfully scale your software development team:
The Most Common Cases that Requires Scaling your Development Team
Scaling a software development team is an essential action in many cases like:
Case 1: Your start-up or company is expanding
Case 2: You are horizontally expanding
Case 3: Good marketing but the poor technical product
Case 4: Cannot handle all projects
Case 5: Repeatedly missed deadlines
7 Tips to Effectively Scale your Software Development Team
Before you begin scaling, create solid foundations. These are the team’s culture, values, strategy, and success metrics. The amount of that is greatly influenced by the size of the business, the number of projects, and other elements.
Here are some of our tips to effectively scale your software development team:
- Define Your Objectives & Goals: Setting goals and objectives is essential before starting the scaling process. Do you envision a possible expansion into new areas? Does that necessitate the need for new direction and leadership? Perhaps a different viewpoint will help your developers improve their ideas. Whatever mix of factors may be relevant to you, you should ultimately have a specific scaling target.
When hiring new employees, it’s simple to get carried away, but you need to have a good reason. Consider your staff. When you’re making significant adjustments, be open with them. Describe how these activities will help the organization achieve its objectives and goals.
Your team should strive for constant development regardless of the project. Here is when setting goals comes into play. By doing this, you can establish a productive workflow and respond to queries like: Should software designers work more quickly than developers in order to maintain the release measure? Or do development leads need to check in more frequently?
- Create a Roadmap: One of the most prevalent scaling issues for development teams is road mapping. Prior to considering the codebase, software architecture, and team members, it is vital to ascertain the fundamental business concepts. Every business needs a distinct vision of its future direction. The team also needs to be aware of the objectives, the funding sources, and the amount of time allocated for product development.
Planning is always a good idea since it prevents chaos from arising. To move in the right path and adapt to any changes, make a thorough business strategy for the following five years. Consider your roadmap; it will serve as a guide and enable the team to accurately estimate timelines and budget.
- Tool Configuration and Setup: The issue of selecting the proper development tools remains crucial whether you are expanding the team through outsourcing or hiring in-house. The ideal options or tools must be selected for new hires.
There are several things to take into account in this regard. Tools for communication are the first. Make sure that the entire team is using the same channels for communication, such as Google Meets and Slack. Consider how to properly use them, taking into account email filters and search engines.
Tool management is the second point. Regardless of the method you use to manage the project and assign work, the software needs to be set up, personalized and accessible to everyone in the team. Each team member should be aware of which board contains his assigned assignments.
- Plan for Process Improvement: Now that you have set up tools to communicate, assign a task to your team members. You can begin organizing how your development team will function once the roles have been allocated and understood. If your business is agile, you must develop a cadence of routines that includes daily standups, backlog grooming, sprint retrospectives, sprint planning, and sprint review.
When someone points out that a task allocated to them is outside the scope of their role, you should be ready for this eventuality in advance. This indicates that a special procedure should be developed for delegating these chores to others or taking care of unaccounted tasks.
- Stay Agile: The software development industry has adopted the agile idea quite successfully. Agile’s success as a method of software delivery comes down to the agility of the engineering team. This means that before expanding your development team, you must ensure that each employee has the ability to work independently. Although each team member contributes in a unique way to the accomplishment of projects, an Agile team is ultimately cross-functional and is accountable for the outcome.
In order to operate effectively, a team will rank the importance of the features and begin working on those that add the most value. Software development teams can produce gradually at a predetermined cost and time by using an agile strategy, enabling a quicker delivery.
- Cultivate leaders: Building engineering leadership is a crucial part of expanding software projects successfully. Make sure that everyone has a clear understanding of each role’s responsibilities. Without appointing a Scrum master, product owner, development lead, business analyst, or product manager, your project cannot begin.
Assign roles and define responsibilities to ensure ownership, which can increase productivity. Develop technical leaders to serve as executive assistants and support you in managing the scalable team structure.
- Hire Effectively: Sometimes it’s impossible to complete the project without placing too much stress and hardship on your current team. Outsourcing is the best answer to this problem since it gives you the flexibility to scale up or down to meet your development needs. It also has the advantage of eliminating the need to terminate employees at the end of the project.
When building a distributed team and lacking internal manpower, you should think about outsourcing. The lower cost of the outsourcing as opposed to retaining internal or distributed development teams is another perk. You may see it by simply converting the variable cost (project fees) into the permanent cost (salaries).
A Few Common Mistakes to Avoid While Scaling
Take the case where you require more employees. It could appear logical to expand the team by adding more members. This is without a sure the finest option, but there is something to think about. This action needs to be carefully thought out in advance and coordinated with the business strategy of the company. If not, the following problems may arise from hiring new employees:
- Unbalanced workload among team members.
- More developers and takes too much time to market the product.
- Scaling or growth of your team with no proper planning leads to issues like sharing responsibility, team management and redundant communication.
- Long sprint development
- Minor upgrades and bug fixes take a longer time.
Unplanned scaling eventually results in decreased efficiency, higher expenses, and a subsequent corporate shakeout.
The ideal way to achieve successful software development scaling is to have a strong foundation that is founded on a defined mission, vision, and culture, as well as some solid processes and a strong technological foundation.
While every business is different, one thing is generic: in order to foster team cooperation, it is essential to implement agile methodologies and use technology and processes. You may adopt best practices and improve your understanding of the end result by working with the right people, whether they are in-house or an outsourced team.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)
How do you measure the performance of a software development team?
The performance of a software development team can be measured by many metrics. And few of them are the speed of completed work, the number of bugs and defects identified, the percentage of completed tasks, customer satisfaction ratings, etc. You can use a combination of quantitative and qualitative measures to get a comprehensive picture of the team’s performance.
How do you scale your team?
To scale a team, you can hire additional team members, start using automation tools, improve communication and collaboration within the team, and adopt agile methodologies and best practices. You can also outsource or partner with other companies to do the same repetitive tasks.