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For Directors of Engineering
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Topic - 136 Stories
VP Engineering at Doximity
How to Build a Distributed Engineering Team
At Doximity, they decided to cultivate a culture of inclusion by building a geographically distributed team. To do this, they fine-tuned their recruiting practices, established a personal connection with their teammates, treated collocated and distributed employees equally, created a virtual water cooler, and focused on delivery teams. They also leveraged the right technology, such as videoconferencing, asynchronous chat, screen-sharing, and voice calls. Through this process, they learned that a distributed team is less about saving money and more about hiring top talent, and that trust, collaboration, and creativity are key to success.
VP, Engineering at Starburst Data
Horizontally Scaling the Engineering Organization
As an organization grows, it becomes harder to maintain efficiency without splintering and fractioning teams. To transition from a monolith team to a number of smaller teams, it is important to define the atomic constructs that maximize local decision making and create a layer of technical governance to coordinate how tasks are handled. Transparency is key to ensure the same level of efficiency. Doing more things in a horizontal manner without letting everything turn into chaos ensures the most significant wins for startups.
VP of Engineering at Puzzle
Tracking Task Estimation
This article discusses the importance of tracking ticket estimation and completion within sprints. It outlines the steps taken to ensure that tickets are estimated and completed within sprints, such as setting a total number of points per person, estimating for QA and ticket closure, and keeping things balanced. It also highlights the importance of tracking progress quarterly and making it open to engineers to ensure that tasks are completed.
Hector Zarate Rea
Engineering Manager at Spotify
An Outsourcing Success Story
This article discusses a problem faced by a team that was working at full capacity but had the opportunity to bring in a big return on investment. The solution was to outsource the project to a developer who had expertise in the domain and platform, and to bring him onsite to build a connection and trust between him, the team, and the company. The lessons learned from this experience were that it is important to find a good outsource provider, prioritize quality over time and cost, and that bringing an outsourced provider onsite is not always necessary.
VP Product at Startups
Dividing a Product Engineering Sprint Team
In order to better manage resources and reduce overhead, an organization split their scrum team into two dedicated sprint teams. Each team was assigned a dedicated Product Manager and engineers were assigned based on skills and preferences. Projects were distributed to the lesser booked team to provide flexibility and balance, and the change resulted in improved productivity, visibility on resources, and better project planning.
Head of Digital Product at Better Place Forests
Simultaneously Transitioning Two Offices from Waterfall to Agile
A consultant was brought in to roll out Agile to a 50 person engineering team across two offices. The consultant worked with the VP of Engineering and Product to develop pods aligned to business objectives, and then brought in a consultant to each office for 2 days of Scrum Master training. The consultant then provided coaching and guidance for each team for two months, and worked with the executive leadership team to set expectations around adoption and velocity. The lessons learned were that it is important to start with one team/pod that has practiced Agile before, and to roll out Agile to teams one at a time, allowing each team to adopt to Agile at their own pace. It is also important for all team members to have training and it's best if the team can do the training together.
VP Software Engineering at human
V2 infrastructure project
Multi-year infrastructure overhaul (V2) projects are complex and require a clear business driver and customer-facing value. The engineering leader needs to work closely with business leaders and stakeholders to ensure there is consensus on making the long-term investment. The team needs to go through a prototyping phase to identify components that need refactoring/re-architecting, risks associated with the proposed architecture, and the resources/time required to deliver the project. The engineering leader must also decide how to organize the team for success, either by embedding the V2 team in the V1 team or by spinning up a new V2 team. The project plan should include deliverables, budget, resources, and time, and the team should identify risks early and have mitigation plans. The team should also set KPIs and OKRs and celebrate small victories and demos to stakeholders.
CTO at TESTAVIVA
Tackling Technical Debt - A CTO's Guide for Startups
Technical debt can significantly hinder a startup's progress and agility. This blog post explores the concept of technical debt, its implications, and strategies for managing and mitigating it from a CTO's perspective. Strategies include prioritising debt reduction, creating a technical debt register, establishing coding standards, investing in continuous learning, and balancing short-term and long-term goals. By proactively addressing technical debt and balancing business value, resilience, and engineering performance, startups can maintain their agility and continue to iterate and adapt to ever-evolving market conditions.
Software Architect; ex-Engineering Director at Inditex
Mentors New Leaders, expertise in SDLC in different industries as videogame or ecommerce.
VP of Software Engineering at SambaNova Systems
Engineering & Product Leader | CTO | VPE
CTO at Crisis Text Line
Growth oriented technology leader
Growth Engineering Leader at Faire
Growth Engineering Leader | Advisor | Mentor | Board Member - Scaling High-Performing Teams to Drive Business Growth - MBA
Professional coach & consultant in Leadership and Digital Transformation at Veepee
ex VP of Engineering & VP Products @ Veepee
CTO at Virgin Pulse
Software Executive | Strategy | Vision | M&A | Transformation | B2B | SaaS
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Software Engineering Manager at Measurabl
Why Would Anyone Mob Program? (an intro)
Mob Programming is a concept where a team of ~3-5 works together on a single feature, with only one person typing at a time. It is a difficult process to go from troll-coding to mobbing, but it is an incredibly valuable and efficient experience. It is slow, but the quality of work produced is multiple times better than what a single developer can create. It also allows for full domain knowledge of the system developed, and one member of the mob can represent the team in meetings.
VP - Engineering at ITILITE Technologies
How to measure Engineering Productivity?
Engineering productivity is the measure of how efficient and effective an engineering team is in delivering value. It is important to measure engineering productivity in order to prevent technical debt buildup and to experiment with various approaches to improve throughput and efficiency. Metrics such as cycle time, release frequency, number of bugs, and review to merge time can be used to measure engineering productivity. Additionally, context switching should be avoided as it is a major productivity killer.
SVP Engineering at Trustly
Assessing the Performance of Your Team
The French National Football Team won the 2018 FIFA World Cup, led by exceptional players such as Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappé. The team was coached by Didier Deschamps, who was also a player on the 1998 championship team. This post discusses the importance of a coach in any team sport, and how an Engineering Manager is similar to a football coach. It also provides a list of metrics to measure the performance of individual team members, such as pull requests merged, bugs or support tickets touched, and open source contributions. Finally, it emphasizes the importance of assessing the “soft” skills of collaboration, motivation, and culture fit in a dynamic business context.
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