According to a survey conducted by the Predictive Index, it is projected that by the year 2023, the majority of Chief Executive Officers (76%) anticipate allowing full-time remote work for the majority or all of their employees. Despite this optimism, it appears there is also a challenge that needs to be addressed, as over half of all CEOs (51%) have identified effective remote work as their primary obstacle.
To Expand and Innovate
As we look ahead to 2023, it is imperative that companies approach the concept of remote work in a more strategic and effective manner if they are to remain competitive and continue to grow. Doing so will enable them to capitalise on the potential for innovation and progress, rather than simply maintaining the status quo.
At the beginning of 2022, InformationWeek noted the importance of CTOs and IT executives quickly adjusting their operations to accommodate the sudden need for employees to work from home. It is essential for businesses to take proactive, long-term steps now in order to not only endure the current economic crisis, but to emerge from it in a stronger position.
Recruit Engineers for Remote Work
By hiring experienced remote developers and managers, Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) can enhance the effectiveness of remote development. This twofold approach not only allows for increased productivity through the use of established best practices, but also allows for the establishment of a more efficient mixed office-remote model for the future.
At the peak of the pandemic, educational technology business 2U was able to successfully adapt to the new circumstances. According to CTO Justin Johnson, the software development team of fifty-plus engineers questioned all aspects of their work. He commented, “Everyone, from the team leaders to the individual members, was asking the same questions: what should we do? How can we continue to hold our standup meetings? What is the best way to approach pair programming? How can we effectively perform code reviews? Most importantly, how can we sustain the customs and practices that make our team so distinctive?
Achieve Greater Efficiency
Johnson and Company recently employed the services of Works, a staff augmentation organisation that specialises in placing remote, long-term engineers on permanent teams for corporations. This form of software outsourcing offers a significant degree of cost and time savings, as it allows businesses to gain access to highly-skilled professionals without having to manage the administrative burdens associated with traditional recruitment. The remote developers recruited through Works have already been integrated into some of Johnson and Company’s teams, and have proven to be a great resource.
Due to the example set by the Works engineers and the teams they worked with, 2U was quick to implement distributed software development best practices throughout their organisation.
Engineering Director Nafisa Chowdhury praised the work of Works, noting that their collaboration “has raised the bar for what remote teams are capable of achieving, and has enabled us to maintain a high level of productivity even as we transitioned to a fully remote workplace.” She added, “Thanks to Works, we had a set of procedures that we could implement with teams that had yet to experience working remotely.
Due to the standardised approaches to teamwork, documentation, and communication implemented by the 2U technology team, the development cycle was significantly shortened. The Works engineers have provided invaluable experience with remote engineering, which has enabled us to achieve much more, given the decreased communication barriers due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Getting Where We Want to Go
Given the sudden shift towards remote working due to the ongoing pandemic, it can be difficult to return to the productive development environment that was previously enjoyed by in-house engineering teams. In order to supplement and improve productivity, it may be beneficial to bring on experienced remote engineers who are well-versed in the methods and strategies of distributed software development. While many companies now have a basic understanding of how to use instant messaging, video conferencing and other forms of online collaboration, there are still ways to further optimise their efficiency and effectiveness.
As the prevalence of remote work continues to increase, many companies are looking to remote solutions to build and maintain high-performing software teams. Two years ago, 2U started to hone in on the best ways to collaborate remotely with their product, Works. Now, they are leveraging that expertise to offer entirely remote software development services to their customers.
Remote Article: Works Jobs: What Is the Process of Becoming a Remote Developer?