Including Offshore Teams in Your Workforce
Over the last decade, more and more U.S. based organizations have been working with offshore teams. The pricing for offshore development is very compelling, however, sometimes delivery, and consistency can oftentimes be an issue. Here at Mobomo, we have solved this issue by presenting clients with the option of working with a hybrid team versus strictly offshore or strictly onshore.
Mobomo has a top of the line onshore project management team- these folks are versed with leadership qualities as well as project management skills that can ensure on time deliverables. Some of the benefits of a hybrid team is that your project is being worked on around the clock, which ensures a quicker delivery date. Having U.S. based staff in these leadership roles helps the coordination of the project between the client as well as the development team.
Our project managers sync daily with off shore resources to ensure that items on the to do list are being accomplished as well as to make sure that everyone is on the same page. Going over tasks completed yesterday, what they are planning to do for the day as well as if there are any questions or blockers. When project managers connect with our development teams this is the time that ensures that there is no miscommunication.
Below are a few things that we incorporate into our framework of working with our offshore team.
- This occurs the first day of sprint and could take an hour. Typically, we conduct sprint planning with our development team to ensure our deliverables match with our timeline. We use JIRA to review desired tickets to complete, and estimate the level of effort to ensure we have enough time to complete all tickets in the sprint. The team self-manages who will work on what throughout the sprint.
- We hold a 15 minute conversation to review the prior day’s completed tasks, which tasks need to be completed that day, and any blockers or questions the team may have. The team self-manages who will work on what task each day. We also review any additional agenda items as needed based on the project such as updates or questions from the client, scope changes, etc.
Review Daily Status Reports
- Our offshore team sends an end of day update (morning U.S. time) which consists of a daily summary of tasks that are ready for review, as well as tasks that are still in progress. We download the latest build and test the updates daily, provide feedback as needed, and/or close out completed tickets.
Sprint Review: last day of sprint (~1 hour)
- It’s important to review a completed project or sprint as a team once that sprint is completed. Some of the bigger questions in this review are understanding what worked well, what should the team do differently next time. We call these meetings retrospectives. Our teams find it useful to do a scrum retrospective so that we can find ways to improve based on what went well and what needs to be reviewed for the next sprint and or project. You can see a full analysis of how we run a sprint review here.
Aside from the framework of how to work with an offshore team, it’s important that the project manager has the ability to communicate well with the client as well as the offshore team. Internally, our project managers use Zoom, Google Hangouts, and GChat to have direct conversations with our offshore team to walk through all assigned tasks as needed. Direct communication with all team members ensures everyone is on the same page and opens the floor for immediate resolution of any questions the team may have.