The ultimate efficiency and quality of software development is not about huge investments, highly advanced technology, or some “secret industry knowledge.” Market-defining products are achieved through consistent, reliable, and harmonious performance. That’s why it is crucial to build a development team that can readily deliver such performance.
All you need is enough insight on finding, recruiting, and coordinating a newly-gathered team of specialists. With the dedicated format being the most conveniently tailored to specific needs while helping cut in-house expenses, we help you set up a dedicated development team, tackling the underlying issues, and overcoming challenges by sharing years’ worth of firsthand experience.
What is a Dedicated Software Development Team?
There are several team formats when it comes to software development. You may run an in-house team of your own, or you may need to either expand it (e.g., due to lack of certain expertise) or gather/hire an offshore team (e.g., to cut in-house expenses while still getting capacities to complete a project).
Many of us in the market are used to associating offshore teams with outsourcing. However, as opposed to outsourced powers, dedicated teams are more directly focused on your particular business needs and goals. Outsourcing is more about time- and cost-saving opportunities, while dedicated teams may either be assembled from scratch or hired as pre-formed gatherings of specialists that best fit your specific requirements.
When managing a dedicated software development team, as a client, you get full control of the workload and composition of the team. At the same time, dedicated teams are commonly managed on the vendor’s side, allowing you to sort of “rent” a fully functional offshore team to jump in and kick off a project.
5 Essential Steps to Build a Dedicated Software Development Team
With all the advantages of this approach, you might be wondering how to set up a dedicated development team to get reliable performance and guaranteed quality results. The main advice here would be to keep it consistent and go through the process of “dedicated team renting” step by step. Here are the necessary stages to guide you.
Do your requirements
Surely, the best thing to start with is to get your requirements straight. Which particular specialists and how many do you require? What skills and level of qualification should they have? What are the team hiring and project budget? These are the major questions to clarify to compose a set of preliminary requirements.
Keep in mind that your requirements are not only about issuing your needs to the future team. They should also help them get familiar with what you have in store. So take your time to describe your company, business, or brand (or yourself as a project owner) and provide a general outline of the project to be implemented.
Good requirements are clear, to the point, and neatly documented to share with potential vendors easily.
Find a reliable vendor
With well-defined requirements in hand, the next step would be finding a dedicated team vendor that you can rely on. Thankfully, you may turn to a specialized dedicated development center that will help you assemble, organize, and augment a team with your project. Do your market research to pick the best agency.
You can go through platforms like Clutch and B2B review websites to pick from a range of available vendors by location, developer rates, expertise and technology provided, testimonials, and portfolio. It is always a good idea to pay more attention to providers that have scaled recently, like agencies that had 50 employees last year and now have 200+.
Narrow down your list of best-fitting potential vendors and start discussing the opportunities offered by each based on your documented requirements. A proper vendor should be able to give you talents to cover the whole project scope, transparently settle all the contracting specifics (pricing model, terms of collaboration, etc.), and guide you on how to build a software development team with the right tech stack to perfectly fit your project constraints.
Once you have settled with the vendor you favor the most, it is time to handpick team candidates. Dedicated team vendors do all the preliminary “auditioning” amongst talents they have in store. So your task is to pick the best-fitting of the best. Prepare a questionnaire that inquires candidates about how they would handle this or that aspect of the project, what their professional aspirations are, what technologies and methodologies they prefer to wield, etc.
The interview should help you assess the interpersonal capabilities of the future team member, see whether they are really able to deliver on their promise, and simply pick your favorites. Just make sure to make an informed decision.
Set your management straight
Figuring out how to set up a dedicated software development team to reckon with, you must put a major focus on management. In our case, it is a vendor’s task to establish smooth communication between you and the team, distribute project tasks, and keep the workflow going. Stay on one page with the assigned team lead or project manager to coordinate everything as you see fit.
Start tracking performance
With the hired, organized, working team in place, the essential task would be to test it in the field. For this, introducing specific workflow evaluation criteria and setting up regular performance checks would be a good idea. The criteria may involve a range of KPIs and measures, like total time of milestone completion, task intensity tracking, etc.
The Must-Have Roles in Your Dedicated Development Team
You can only build a dedicated software development team that truly delivers with all the right specialists in place. The required qualifications may range based on many underlying factors and requirements. However, a complete full-stack team commonly has the following positions filled.
Project Manager or Team Lead
“The one to rule them all” (forgive the joke)—first off, you need a responsible specialist to make an efficient link between you, your project specifications, and the gathered team. A team lead or a project manager distributes tasks and sets deadlines, communicates all the inquiries and nuances back and forth, controls workload, and keeps performance indicators in check.
Business analysts can be optional, but their role cannot be underestimated. This type of specialist conducts in-depth research of the business and technical aspects of the project. They help achieve the proper compliance of the project with your goals and underlying tech specifications.
Software developers, programmers, architects, or engineers fill up the designed project “carcasses” with functionality and running capacities. They handle all the coding that sets software in motion and makes it work. Keep in mind, however, that software projects usually require separate back-end and front-end developers so that the user-oriented side and the internal tech side of the project are handled accordingly.
A good software development dedicated team is never complete without a QA or testing specialist onboard. Timely quality assurance helps achieve the market-defining quality of the end product by running it through a series of testing sprints, evaluating performance rates and user experience, and identifying flaws and errors for bug-fixing procedures.
A good marketing expert helps hype up your project, prepare the ground for its launch, and introduce it to the public (or investors) with a loud bang. For this, they handle market and competitor studies, compose promotion strategies, generate leads, and promote products in the field. Content marketing, SMM, and SEO are the basic tools for marketing specialists.
DevOps Specialist (optionally)
For utterly honed results and in-depth coordinated workflow, you may want to also include a DevOps specialist in your dedicated team. They coordinate developer and QA performance based on the relevant product development and operational constraints.
To Hire or Set Up a Dedicated Development Team?
Depending on the project specifics or business needs, you may decide to hire a pre-formed team of specialists or assemble it from scratch, member by member. We already told you how to build a dedicated software development team in a nutshell, and the final decision on how exactly to approach the process is yours to make.
Pros and cons of assembling a team
Deciding to build a software development team member by member, you get:
- More guarantees of getting exactly the results you expect;
- Better understanding of team members;
- Better control over the processes;
- Clearer picture of the project.
But you also need to:
- Invest a lot of time and a fair amount of effort into interviews;
- Have all business and tech specifics of the project straight;
- Stay all-around involved with the team.
Pros and cons of getting a ready-made team
Alternatively, hiring a pre-formed team gives you:
- Significant time-saving opportunities;
- An ability to jump in and cut your project’s time-to-market;
- A fitting option for working with requirements that are to be scaled in the future;
But you also may expect:
- Higher risk of errors and non-compliance with your vision and requirements;
- Difficulties during workflow integration;
- Unexpected pitfalls due to the lack of research.
The final choice is yours to make, but you can always rely on experienced professionals to help you find your way around and achieve the best individual results. Who knows, sometimes the path of least resistance is the way to go to launch a booming startup. Just make sure to turn to a custom software development company that can not only give you talents or complete teams but also explain how to build a dedicated development team in detail for your specific case.