Software development is an incredibly fast-paced environment where every second count. Whenever we receive a request for a project, we often hear that the deadline is “yesterday” – meaning, things have to be done as soon as possible but at the same time the result should be of high quality.
Meeting deadlines is one of the most critical issues for software developers and wise management can help resolve it. Below we will share the practices that help us meet the deadlines without hurting the product quality.
- Growing expertise
Instead of offering a wide array of services, we prefer to focus on a few and grow expertise in specific areas. Such as mobile applications, AI and machine learning. In terms of technology - React Native, Python etc.
This approach is crucial for our performance, it helps us become an expert in a certain niche and confidently work on the projects.
As well, the confidence in our skills helps us adapt to projects of any size and complexity. This is the reason the startups choose us - we know how to deliver excellent results without going over the budget and deadline.
- Thorough planning
Before getting down to any project, developing a solid and clear business plan is an absolute must.
Even if the client approaches us with a vague vision of a project, we will first work together to outline goals and milestones, develop a so-called scope management plan and only then will start the development.
A plan is needed to monitor the progress and formulate smaller tasks, based on the large ones.
Ongoing communication to eliminate misunderstanding
We are the adepts of transparent and ongoing communication with our clients. Skype, Slack, email, messengers – anything that’s comfortable for the client.
We believe that thorough communication helps prevent misunderstanding, decreases the possibility of an error and time loss.
As well, we have a habit of collecting the client’s and users’ feedback on time. Such feedback helps to timely identify if the work on the project goes in the wrong direction and implement changes before it’s too late.
Keeping things in order
As the project grows, it will become more complex and that’s totally OK. At the same time, increased complexity will make debugging and implementation of new features and functions more difficult, correspondingly.
With a skilled team, growing complexity will not affect the project much. However, there are a few things that we do to eliminate complexity.
First is technical debt. It means a decision to sacrifice quality in favor of speed: i.e. if you need to release something fast. We always track the technical debt thoroughly so that it won’t affect our performance in the future.
The second thing is – we absolutely prohibit cowboy coding! Cowboy coding means fast coding that ignores the overall quality and even some rules or requirements. While certain parts of the project will be performed at lightning-fast speed, it will hurt the general quality, so it’s a big no-no for us.
Rework includes such aspects as debugging, dealing with vague requirements, and completion of incorrect tasks. Here is how we resolve each of these issues:
- Perform code mutual review;
- Testing at certain project stages;
- Thorough communication with a client and double-check whether we are on the same page about the requirements;
- Hold regular meetings on project progress to make sure everyone is moving the right direction and in the right tempo.
At Celadon, we prefer an agile approach towards project development, which allows us to identify the bugs early and implement any fixes as soon as possible to avoid doing double work in the future.
- Work Process: a strict focus on the task
Task completion demands immense focus and concentration and even the slightest interruption may affect the work process. Here is how we manage to maintain the satisfactory speed and quality of work and help the developers stay fresh and ready for work.
At Celadon, we have an organized teamwork space and a few conference rooms for either meetings or private “thinking times”. A quiet place with no people is a good chance of environment and positively impacts the team’s motivation and enthusiasm towards work. In these spaces, our developers can discuss the project, work together or independently and focus on the tasks that require maximal concentration.
As well, we do not promote multitasking. We believe it’s better for a developer to focus on a single task and do it perfectly, then move to another one, rather than get distracted by a dozen of little tasks at the same time and end up in a mess.
- Work Process: burnout prevention
Software developers are normally working quite intensively to meet deadlines and quality. Moreover, all the projects have hard-to-predict-number of unexpected little tasks popping out of nowhere that demand immediate attention. Sounds a bit tough, isn’t it? And the worst thing that can happen is burnout.
Companies with high employee burnout rates have a low level of trust and a bad reputation. As a result - talented and experienced developers don’t want to work there. As well, if developers leave the company on a regular basis, it’s a clear sign that the working process is not organized well enough.
To decrease the level of stress among our employees, we:
- Organize or reorganize the whole working process: from submitting work to putting requests. We do our best to make it as easy and hassle-free as possible.
- Think of suitable encouragements and motivators: what would make our team happy?
- Prevent heavy overtime. In cases when it’s not possible - we give a few additional days of the rest to the employee after finishing overtime sprint.
- Provide an opportunity for learning (we will elaborate it further).
Celadon developers are the ones that make the business running - this is a thing that we always keep in mind.
- Corporate education
Experienced developers can produce high-quality results in a shorter period of time than junior developers, and that’s a well-known fact. As well, skilled developers tend to write clear and easy code while novices produce complex and quite fragile code.
These are the reasons we never hesitate to invest in education for the team. We provide developers with opportunities to visit different educational events or sign-up for online courses.
We also encourage mutual learning to practise inside the team, which means that if a few developers learned something new on a project, they will share the knowledge and experience with may. Thus our developer’s average expertise grows exponentially.
At Celadon, we build a management model in such a way that the work is always done in a high-quality manner and on time. At the same time, we manage to prevent our developers from burnouts and create win-win situations for both our employees and clients.