5 habits of highly successful modern software teams

5 Habits of Highly Successful Modern Software Teams

As the speed of innovation in the software industry has become second to none, companies need to work harder and faster to keep up with the rapidly changing demand. And we are not only talking about keeping up with technological advances, but the need to face the organizational challenges that come along with new ways of developing modern software.

A modern software development process means moving away from legacy systems which were traditionally monolithic and on-premise. Specific technologies aside, modern software development also means a team that works in a modern way, and enables innovation for the company. So, you may ask; What is a modern software company?

Here are 5 habits of highly successful modern software development teams:

1. Innovation is a part of their culture

Modern software teams are inquisitive, they are constantly on the lookout for better, faster, and cheaper ways of developing software. In short, they innovate. Researching and trying out alternative ways is a welcomed challenge for modern software teams. This usually comes from establishing a company culture that allows open discussions and encourages new ideas. 

If your team is holding on to the legacy software because it seems daunting to undertake a huge digital transformation, then it’s time to drive some change.

How do I make my software team successful?

The good news is that when it comes to internalizing innovation as part of your culture, it can be easy. Introducing new strategies that allow developers to experiment and explore, you can help your team adapt. Identify the leaders and the most senior developers in your software team, and together you can come up with a solid plan to enable innovation from within.

Every company’s needs are different, but to succeed you need to add innovation into your KPIs, come up with ways of achieving it, and delegate. If you are sticking with these new procedures and providing your software team with the right programming tools, change should follow.

 

2. Modern engineering teams are Agile

One of the 12 principles in the Agile Manifesto states: “Welcome changing requirements, even late in the development process. Agile processes harness change for the customer’s competitive advantage.”

According to research from the Project Management Institute, agile teams finished development projects on time 65% of the time, versus 40% for non-agile engineering teams. They reached 75% of their KPIs, while non-agile teams reached only 56% and which resulted in a revenue growth 37% faster!

Utilizing agile development practices, teams will usually tackle a project in 2-3 week sprints and can quickly iterate and test fresh ideas, whereas using Waterfall methodologies, you might spend several months to a year before a user sees your product. This hinders the chances of continuous improvement and software quality because all current and future plans depend on initial assumptions. If you need to adjust to new customer expectations, change can be difficult and costly to implement.

How do I make my software team successful?

If you haven’t already, consider following an agile methodology for software project management. Here are some of the most widely-used Agile software development methodologies:

  • Scrum 
  • Kanban
  • Lean Software Development
  • And more

Most agile methodologies have overlapping characteristics, but from an implementation standpoint, they each use a unique mix of practices and tactics. Find out what works best for your team, your business, and technical needs.

We have taken on many modernization projects. We know it works, if you pick the correct agile methodology and make it your own. Figure how your product roadmap, and development process. Only then will the best approach be clearer. Otherwise, feel free to reach out and we can help!

 

3. Modern software teams see ahead

Successful modern software teams will not only develop quality software that works perfectly today, but they have an eye for the future. If you internalize innovation, you will expect change coming and design software products that can adapt. 

From scalability and portability to easy maintainability and continuous integration, there are many factors that won’t affect your software today but may cause you trouble in the future.

How do I make my software team successful?

We mostly take these decisions that may affect the future performance of our software at the initial design stage. Make it part of your process to consider each of these factors that allow your software to remain modern

If your team members are working with microservices, decentralized systems, containers, agile methodologies etc., then it should be fairly easy to introduce change. 

If you are past initial stages, your software team needs to analyze where performance can be increased within the existing architecture. Eliminating interdependencies as much as possible is the goal. Making sure new projects have a more decentralized and decoupled architecture will break the cycle.

 

4. Modern software teams work smart and they work less

From continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) to continuous delivery and automated testing, a successful software team knows how to implement DevOps practices. This means an increased efficiency and a continuous software development process that leaves no room for errors. 

Teams utilizing DevOps efficiently experience an 18% reduction in time-to-market and a 21% increase in new software delivery. Software teams with an efficient CI/CD pipeline deliver faster, higher-quality applications to market enabling a 19% revenue increase.

Another side of working smart is writing code that is short, clean and can scale more easily. Today, engineering teams make use of various principles of Clean Coding such as KISS, SOLID and DRY, enabling them to have a neat and scalable code.

How do I make my software team successful?

If your software team is behind on the automation efforts, then it may be wise to reallocate some resources or make more strategic hires.

The good thing is, software developers are keen on adopting continuous development as it means less work for them. Create the opportunity for your developers to assume such a role in the team. You will not only be increasing team motivation, but also productivity.

If you are hiring new software developers, you should know that most tech employers expect developers to have at least some experience in automation. With a few strategic hires, you can add the right skills to your development team.

We have deployed many DevOps, Build and Release, Quality Assurance Automation and Site Reliability Engineers in the past years. We can see these roles have become a must for modern software teams because our clients increasingly ask for this skill set within the extended development teams we provide.

 

5. Modern software teams aren’t bound by circumstances

Beyond being flexible in the face of technical challenges, a successful software team is ready for different modes of working and communication. Great teams focus on hiring only the most fitting developers and these developers might sometimes be on the other side of the world. Will you let that stop you from scoring the talent you want?

How do I make my software team successful?

Especially today, with the high demand for software developers, we have to cater to the needs of the talent more than before. That means being able to accommodate different time zones, remote workers, and different cultures.

Modern software teams today have processes and development tools to enable smooth collaboration and software development. From conferencing tools enabling communication remotely, to project management tools for developers in different time zones to track each other’s progress, you can help your software team develop not only good code but also a collaborative environment.

 

Conclusion

Having a modern software development team is not a state but a process. Even the best teams need to watch out for upcoming software trends and the ever changing market demand. 

Prioritize innovation, whether it be a full on modernization or a gradual shift, and you will see your software team align in the right direction. You may not see the change overnight, but changing mindsets and habits is not like flipping a switch. Stick with innovation as a goal, incorporate it in your culture, enable your software team to follow through and it will become a team value.

 

To sum up, if you want to achieve a successful modern software development team, you should:

  • Lead by example for internalizing innovation
  • Tackle modernization as a whole from the tech stack and architecture to the ways you work as a team
  • Adjust your goals and design solutions sustainable in the long run
  • Encourage your developers to adopt automation and become more efficient
  • Decorate your team with multiple tools and processes to operate anywhere, anytime.

 

At Zartis, we have a team of 100+ software developers specialized in modern software practices from agile software development to microservices architecture utilizing containers, open source development environments and more. From hiring, to security setup, and ongoing support, we take care of your extended team, so you can focus on what matters — building quality software. 

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