Anyone who has worked in the tech industry knows that software and web development is one of the most complicated and technical processes in any environment, let alone a corporate setting. Perhaps the most crucial aspect of achieving productive, successful development is the organization of the dev team. People aren’t perfect, and when it comes to something as complicated as development a little help can go a long way; which is why today we’ll be outlining five tips you can use to make your dev team more successful.
Start Small and Grow Into It
Many hands make light work, but too many cooks spoil the broth. These two very famous idioms are exact opposites to one another, but still somehow remain true. In many cases, the same can be said about dev teams; and finding the right amount of people working at the right jobs is integral to finding a balance that works for your specific case.
Too many people working on the same projects at one time can lead to confusion, overlapping work, and even conflict between conflicting ideas. Because of this, it’s a good idea to start small with the dev team, then work your way up in personnel as you work out your needs and can gauge how work is progressing.
Planning is Everything
There is a reason why applications like JIRA and Slack were created; and that’s because planning is probably the most essential part of running a successful development process. Whether you use JIRA, GIT, or just plain old sticky notes and a whiteboard to assign your tasks, setting up and maintaining a software development plan will keep your dev team running like a well-oiled machine without the need for any parts to stop and find something new to do or double check where they’re at in their stack. Development is already messy enough; and taking any steps possible to bring some order to the chaos will pay dividends down the line.
Create a Culture
Sometimes it can easy to forget that development teams, like any community, are largely a social entity as well as a mechanical and professional one. Of course the main purpose of the team is to work and create the best product they possibly can, but some level of fraternization has to go along with any amount of interaction between the members of your team.
And best the development team is just that –a team– it can cause a lot of problems when some members of the team don’t fit together. So, rather than replace entire team members in the middle of your dev processes, working on soft skills and team-building to create a culture can save a lot of headache down the road and avoid a lot of potential conflict or team politics.
Keep Everyone on the Same Page
As we mentioned earlier, programs like Slack and JIRA are invaluable, and serve the vital purpose of communication and planning. As an extension of this, the importance of keeping the members of your dev team on the same page as one another (which can be much harder than it sounds) cannot be overstated. Simple changes to your application’s form or function can cause have a butterfly effect-like impact on the rest of your development, and what seemed like a small change initially can render the work of other team members obsolete.
Automate Where You Can
Last, but certainly not least, is the topic of automation. Automated deployments have become very popular in recent years as the technology has advanced and developers have realized the many advantages it can have. Tools like Contegix’s Agility Bundle allow you to automate deployments across your ecosystems, greatly speeding up the development process and testing times for your development team, and freeing up a lot of their valuable time.
In the end, the way you organize your development team is entirely up to you, and no two situations are going to look exactly the same. However, there are still some general tips and rules to live by, and tools like JIRA, Slack, GIT, and Agility Bundle allow you to speed up your development processes. When you pair these tools with an organized team that works well together and a solid development plan there is nothing your team can’t accomplish.